Integrated Coastal Zone Management is an issue of general interest worldwide. It took off in the US in the beginning of the 1970s due to the need for integrated public coastal zone management. The objective is to identify and promote measures to remedy problems of many coastal zones and the deterioration of their environmental, socio-economic and cultural resources. The EC interest for the issue has been justified under the consideration that a) coastal problems have a European dimension and cannot be solved by Member States on an individual basis, b) EU policies and actions influence coastal zone development (regional, maritime, transport, fishing, environmental, agricultural, energy and industrial policies), and c) exchange of experiences and knowledge is needed in a field that is still poorly known and in which there is public demand for a substantial policy.
The EU has become increasingly aware about the importance of the marine problem and its link with the state of the coastal zone, and this is reflected in Directive 2008/56/EC of the European Parliament and Council, dated 17th June, 2008, which establishes community action framework for marine policy (Framework Directive on marine strategy). It establishes a framework and common objectives for protecting and preserving the marine environment in 2020, such that Member States start evaluating the needs of marine areas under their competence and then prepare and apply coherent management plans in each region and guarantee follow-up of the same. The Framework Directive on marine strategy has an important complement in the “Framework Directive of water 2000/60/EC” which includes ‘coastal waters’ and ‘transition waters’ for global and integrated management of the hydrological cycle, and must therefore be taken into account for proper ICZM, and in particular, to achieve “management according to the very nature of the ecosystems”.
INTEGRATED COASTAL ZONE MANAGEMENT
▪ Line 3.1: Hydrodynamic and physical modelling of the coastal zone. It includes numerical modelling and physics of coastal processes, circulation and coastal hydrodynamics and upwelling processes, hydrodynamic studies of estuaries, exchange between estuary and shelf, salinity mixing and stratification of flows, hydrodynamic studies and human impact on the environment and its vulnerability. It also encompasses issues such as turbulence, physical modelling of waves in tanks and rivers, numerical modelling and hydraulic projects in transition zones, modelling of estuarine circulation.
▪ Line 3.2: Coastal Geology. It includes the study of the coastal environment from diverse points of view such as geology, sedimentology, morphodynamics, seismology, migration and evolution, pollution and risks (including global change and effect of sea level rise), study of different coastal elements and time studies including several periods (Holocene, Palaeocene…), and the use of measurement technology such as penetration radars and sonars.
▪ Line 3.3: Modelling of sediment transport in fluvial and coastal systems. This line of study covers sediments from different aspects such as: transport, erosion, accumulation, modelling, measurement technologies, impacts and uses.
▪ Line 3.4. Matter flow across frontiers. This line includes nutrient aspects in ecosystems such as origin, cycles, vertical and benthonic flows, food availability, physical-biological interactions of ecosystems.
▪ Line 3.5. Biodiversity and littoral zone ecology. This line covers multiple aspects that go from the individual to the ecosystem.
▪ Line 3.6. Pollution and environmental impacts. It includes analysis of the effects of diverse pollutants (hydrocarbons, heavy metals, pesticides, etc.) on the several ecosystem compartments, at different time scales, as well as the use of bioindicator species and bioremediation techniques and regeneration of ecosystems.
▪ Line 3.7. Diagnosis and response of coastal ecosystems to climate change. This line analyses ecosystem responses to global change (rise in CO2, sea level, temperature), in the different components (phytoplankton, zooplankton, nutrients, etc.) and processes (respiration, photosynthesis, etc.), as well as the use of diverse measurement techniques (Photogrammetry, UAV, LIDAR, 4D monitoring).
▪ Line 3.8. Economic and legislative assessment of coastal ecosystems and of environmental impacts. This line studies ecosystems and the impacts produced on them from environmental, economic, social, etc. points of views at local/ regional/national and cross-border level.
▪ Line 3.9. Analysis and environmental assessment of the coastal zone. This line analyses and plans management of the marine area from diverse points of views such as uses, activities, impacts, benefits, legal aspects in its management, environmental strategy, environmental impact assessments, etc.
▪ Line 3.10. Coastal zone planning. Comprehensive planning of coastal zones. It includes diverse aspects such as development instruments, management, town planning, sustainability, load bearing capacity, demarcation and management of national and international marine zones, use of diverse methodologies (GIS, remote sensing, etc.)
▪ Line 3.11. Coastal economic activity: assessment and sustainability. It includes diverse aspects such as social sustainability, markets, corporate social responsibility, public policies, employment, etc.
▪ Line 3.12. Governance in marine activities, integration of public land and marine policies and social responsibility. It includes diverse legislative (public policies and strategies, planning and regulation instruments, fiscal instruments, etc.) and governance aspects (organisations/institutions, levels, conflicts and laws, etc.).
▪ Line 3.13. Marine protected areas. These reserves are studied from the point of view of economics, management, conservation, modelling and characterisation, amongst others.
▪ Line 3.14. Sustainable coastal tourism use. It includes the study of the coast: physical medium, species, human impacts, etc. and sustainability with tourism use.
▪ Line 3.15. Society and coastal heritage: History, population and conservation. It includes contemporary, urban, fishing and marine history, and even marine and maritime culture.
COASTAL PROTECTION AND MARITIME SAFETY: ENGINEERING AND REGULATION
▪ Line 3.16. Coastal protection structures: types of wave breakers and screens. It includes concepts related to breakwaters, wave breakers, fixed and floating screens, underwater breakwaters, 3D modelling, costs and benefits, numerical simulation, connecting forces, wave transmission coefficients, structural assessment, etc.
▪ Line 3.17. Comprehensive coastal zone management: Map of vulnerabilities and technologies. It deals with issues such as support systems for decision making, risk and vulnerability analysis, structural force measures, video monitoring, laser technologies, coastal erosion, digital models of land, photogrammetry systems, etc.
▪ Line 3.18. Recovery of coastal zones. Regeneration of beach and dune systems, management strategies for sediment and dredging. It covers subjects related to benefits and impacts of dredging, influence of coastal structures, dune analysis and recovery projects, bathymetry, sediment quality, turbidity, systems for obtaining geo-environmental data, digital side scan sonar, etc.
▪ Line 3.19. Safety, risk and responsibility. It includes studies and techniques related to risk evaluation, optimum inspection, economic analysis of oil spills, risk management, state and civil liability, responsibility of vessel’s flag state, environmental offences, coastal protection, criminal law, corporate offences, maritime legislation, design of new emergency plans, digital models of elevations, geographic information systems, LIDAR.
Line 3.20. Organisation of public measures to respond to crises. It covers subjects such as functions and competences of the International Maritime Organisation, international law, the European Union, environmental economy, shelter ports, regulation of risks, proactive participation, etc.