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Coastal and Estuarine Processes and Morphology

The establishment of the baseline of coastal and estuarine processes and morphology involved the collection of data relating to a number of aspects. Please click on the links within the text below to see more detailed information on each of these subjects.

The assessment of coastal evolution of the tidal Thames included data collection on both the geological and Holocene evolution of the estuary, and also included the historic relative sea level change and ground motion recorded for this area.

The consideration of anthropogenic influence in the baseline included data collection on land claim and industrial development in the tidal Thames, the construction of West Thurrock Oil Jetty, Woolwich Ferry Terminals, and Rainham Creek Dam, as well as the Diver Shoal Groynes, dredging and disposals, and the operation of the Thames Barrier.

The baseline also considered other physical processes such as salinity, mixing and the turbidity maximum, tides and tidal range, storm surges, tidal and residual currents, waves, and the freshwater input to the estuary. Issues such as the response of intertidal areas to historic sea level rise are also documented.

Sediment sources and transport (both suspended and bedload) are also important aspects when considering coastal and estuarine processes, and were included in the baseline assessment. Sediment budget was also investigated for the subtidal channel, Blyth Sands and Yantlet Flats, Mucking Flats, and sediments derived from both saltmash, and fluvial sources.

Finally, a summary of the morphological characteristics of the subtidal channel, intertidal flats and saltmarsh were also provided in the baseline.

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