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Trace the History of Coastal Defence in the UK

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Trace the History of Coastal Defence in the UK Coastlines display enormous diversity. This is due to the variety and complexity of the factors influencing coastal morphology. In very general Davisian terms, any shoreline is a product of "structure, stage and process". In other words, in analysing any shoreline, one must take into account structural factors such as the arrangement of different rock types and their resistance to wave attack and solution, as well as other geological considerations such as the angle of dip and pattern of bedding and jointing of sedimentary strata, The form of any shoreline is also a product of its age and the stage reached in its evolution; that is to say, one must take into account former geological processes and earlier changes of climate and sea-level which may have produced particular features of the present coastline. Finally, the contemporary processes of coastal erosion and deposition operating on the shoreline are obviously important in determining its form, as are various other physical, chemical and biological processes operating above the tidal zone, together with human activity which is a rather specialized but important cause of coastal change. The multiplicity of factors involved and their local variations result in a wide variety of coastal landforms. ...read more.


It has also been suggested that another problem with Johnson's scheme is that, if strictly applied, virtually all coasts are of the compound type. That is to say, at some time in their history, almost all coasts will have been affected by both positive and negative movements of base level. Another approach is that of F.P. Shepard whose "Revised Classification of Marine Shorelines" (1945) placed greater emphasis on contemporary shoreline processes rather that the evidence of former emergence or submergence. Thus, Shepard makes a broad distinction between Primary or Youthful Coasts shaped primarily by non-marine processes, and Secondary or Mature Coasts shaped primarily by marine processes (Figure 2). 1) Primary or Youthful Coast (shaped primarily by non-marine processes) a) Shaped by terrestrial erosion and then drowned e.g. Ria coast, Dalmatian coast, fjord coast, etc. b) Shaped by terrestrial deposition e.g. Delta coast, dune coast, mangrove coast, etc. c) Shaped by volcanic activity e.g. Coast of volcanic deposition, volcanic explosion coast. d) Shaped by diastrophism e.g. Fault scarp coast, fold mountain coast 2) Secondary or Mature Coast (Shaped primarily by Marine processes) a) Shaped by marine erosion e.g. Coasts made more regular by erosion, coasts made less regular by erosion. b) Shaped by marine deposition e.g. Sand spits, cuspate forelands, barrier reef coasts, etc. ...read more.


Responsibility for flood protection and land drainage continued to shift, and in 1984 was held by the Land Drainage Division; in 1986 by the Flood Defence and Land Sales Division; and in 1989 by the Flood Defence Division. A Flood and Coastal Defence Division was established in 1993 within the Environment Policy Group of MAFF's Countryside, Marine Environment and Fisheries Directorate. By 1997, as a result of reorganisation within MAFF, it had been transferred to the Regional Services and Defence Group of the Agricultural, Crops and Commodities Directorate. Around 1995 it absorbed an Emergency Unit dealing with emergency planning in relation to national food supplies, and became known as Flood and Coastal Defence with Emergencies Division (FCDE) (Defra, 2005). Until MAFF's replacement by DEFRA in 2001 (the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs was created in June 2001 from the then Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food (MAFF) and from the environmental and countryside business areas of the then Department of the Environment, Transport and the Regions (DETR)), FCDE ran MAFF's flood and coastal defence programme. The National Assembly for Wales (exercising powers formerly held by the Welsh Office) worked with MAFF to monitor the progress made towards reaching policy objectives. These aimed to minimise flooding and coastal erosion in England and Wales, and to reduce the associated risks to people and the developed and natural environment. The Division was responsible for the following in England: Word Count: 1692 ...read more.

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