The coast is where land meets the sea or the ocean, and coastal waters form a natural boundary that is dynamic and changes due to various hydromorphological, climate- and weather-driven, and human-related processes. Depending on their location around the world, coastal waters can be affected and transformed by tides, waves, currents, storm surges, sediment transport and sea level rise, some of which can cause coastal flooding and erosion. Coastal defence engineering and shoreline management are often used to mediate these effects.
Coastal waters, including estuaries (where rivers meet the sea), are often areas of concentrated human activities and associated pressures. Pollution, eutrophication and deteriorating water quality are common issues in coastal areas, affecting the quality of bathing waters and water used in other activities, such as fisheries and aquaculture. In the recent decades, increased ship traffic, oil spill incidents, changing land use and climate change have had an adverse effect on coastal waters, globally. As a result, environmental protection measures need often put in place, to ensure ecosystem services are properly assessed and sustainably managed.
The EU H2020 Coastal Waters Research Synergy Framework (Co-ReSyF) will deliver a platform to support and monitor economic and social coastal activities (e.g. fisheries, harbour operations, ship traffic monitoring, oil spill detection) in a changing world. For a list of the research applications currently being developed in Co-ReSyF, see here.