ABPmer to Present at 5th Workshop on Remote Sensing of Coastal Zone in Prague (Czech Republic)

ABP Marine Environmental Research Ltd (ABPmer) will be presenting a paper on the role of earth observation data in understanding the effects of climate change at the EARSeL “5th Workshop on Remote Sensing of the Coastal Zone” being held on 1-3 June in Prague.

Sponsored by the European Space Agency, the EU and UNESCO, this conference provides an opportunity for promoting co-operation between remote sensing experts and environmental managers / decision-makers as well as a platform for sharing innovative applications of remote sensing in the management of the coastal zone.

The application of Earth Observation data for coastal monitoring has been the subject of numerous studies during the past 10 years. Examples include flood risk mapping, pollution monitoring, waves, coastal erosion, nearshore bathymetry and marine water quality monitoring. The clear advantage in using satellite data for monitoring the marine environment is the facility to provide repeat surveys for large (and often inaccessible) areas at a cost that compares favourably with ship based surveys. However, in many cases the uptake of Earth Observation data for marine and coastal applications is restricted to airborne platforms such as LiDAR. This is due in part to the inherent limitations of earlier satellite systems and in particular, the limited spatial resolution that could be achieved near to the coast.

Alison Houghton, a senior coastal scientist, explained, “The effects of changes in the earth’s climate are clearly manifested at the land/sea interface as rising sea levels and variable hydrodynamic forcing combine to alter the nature and configuration of the coastline. These changes represent a potential threat to both the natural environment and coastal communities in terms of increased erosion and inundation risks. An understanding of the interaction between hydrodynamic and sedimentary process at a variety of temporal and spatial scales is fundamental to the effective management of the coastal zone. A wide variety of tools and data sources are currently used to develop a conceptual understanding of coastal morphology and ecosystem dynamics and to monitor or predict their response to both natural changes and to anthropogenic activities.

Recently, the development of sophisticated image analysis techniques has enhanced the accuracy and resolution of the data that can be derived from satellite images. This paper explores the potential for improved integration of remote sensing data with in situ data sources and as input to numerical models with a view to fully exploiting the potential of earth observation for monitoring the response of coastal zones to changing physical forcing and climate change.”

ABPmer is a recognised provider of specialist expertise to the coastal management sector and has undertaken a number of studies aimed at increasing the use of satellite data for monitoring the marine environment.


Source: abpmer, May 26, 2011;



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