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UNESCO Reports on New Model for Estimating Coastline Erosion from Sea Level Rise

UNESCO10 September 2012: The Institute for Water Education of the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO-IHE) has highlighted recent findings that coastline erosion resulting from rising sea levels is much greater than previously estimated. Researchers from UNESCO-IHE, the Delft University of Technology (TU Delft) and the Deltares Institute found that the previously used model, known as the Bruun effect, did not consider erosion in inlet areas, such as river mouths and estuaries.

Inlet areas are affected by factors other than sea-level rise, such as changes in rainfall due to climate change.

According to UNESCO-IHE, the research team used a model developed by scientist Rosh Ranasinghe to include these additional details of the landscape. The model was applied to four different coastlines in two countries, Viet Nam and Australia. UNESCO says the outcomes are valuable to coastal management and planning.

The team's findings are published in the online edition of the journal "Nature Climate Change." [UNESCO Press Release]