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Sea Erosion – Causes – Effects – Prevention

by Sekar Puspa

Nowadays, ocean suffers many kinds of problems seriously. One of them is the sea erosion. So, what is sea erosion? Well, sea erosion often refers to beach erosion due to the frequent presence of the erosion at the beach. It is known that beach erosion occurs when waves remove the sand from beach system.

Moreover, the loss of sand causes the beach become narrower and lower in elevation. Also, coastal erosion can lead to the breaking up of rock along the coast. At this point, sea erosion has become a serious concern for coastal countries as we know that the sea is the source of everything.

Sea erosion faces the five steps in sea erosion process. The first one, the sea suffer from corrosion which refers to the event when the waves pick up beach material like pebbles and hurt them at the base of a cliff. Then, it comes to the abrasion which is also known as the sand paper effect due to the breaking waves which contain sand and larger fragments erode the shoreline. The repeated action of waves breaking on a cliff.

After that, the waves will hit the base of a cliff air which is compressed into cracks. This event occurs when the wave impacts a cliff face, air is forced into cracks under high pressure and called for a hydraulic action.

Moreover, there comes attrition which causes the rocks and pebbles to bump into each other and break up. At the last process, the certain types of cliff erode resulting in weak acids in the sea called the corrosion or solution as its name. Consequently, several rocks are vulnerable to this acidic water and dissolve into it.

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As the consequence, we should discover what to. Then, if you want to find out what are they, then kindly read the following statements below.


1. Destructive Waves

Waves can destruct the shoreline as it could be huge and large waves. Indeed, the large waves can cause the sea erosion as it might cause the abrasion. Not only for the abrasion, waves can smash the rocks on the shore and cause them break and smoother. As a result, we cannot blame the waves as it is a natural way. Then, as a solution, we should think about how to deal with the destructive waves in order to prevent the sea erosion.

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2. Sea Water’s Acid

It is also known that the acids contained in sea water can cause the sea erosion. This one occurs due to the dissolving process to some types of rock including chalk or limestone.

See also: Acidification of The Ocean

3. Deforestation

As explained before, the natural disaster can cause the sea erosion. However, the one who put the biggest contribution in the erosion of the sea is exactly the human factors. We know that every human activity might break the ecosystem and nature living. In the same way, we increase the deforestation level and remove the natural vegetation. Indeed, these actions resulting in issues such as the recession of the shoreline.

In addition, we may need the forest natural sources for the sake of human living. We cannot deny that we need wood and other forest sources to support our living. However, thinking about how many healthy forests left in this earth may make us realize how important to keep the sustainable ecosystem.

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4. Sand Mining

Another human factor which contributes to coastal erosion is sand mining. As the consequence, sand mining involves the extraction and removal of sand from beaches. The purpose of this action is mainly for the roads and driveways construction.

For instance, many countries used million tons of sand and hard rock per year in order to support their country development. Indeed, human actions give bad impacts to the ocean environment as the things that they have done often resulting in unsustainable rate and threatening the coastal living.

5. The Increase of Population

As the population of human is being increased, many homes are built along the shorelines. As the consequence, this situation also affects to the ocean environment. The civilization and the accompanied developments during the last few decades give the negative impacts to cause the coastal erosion.

Besides, there are many kinds of a hotel are built along the shoreline to attract beach visitors. Also, visitors to the beach often cause ocean problems like throwing the trash everywhere. Hence, though this socio-economic development and the increasing local income seem like as a good thing, still, we need to ensure the understanding of the coastal zone management as the very first number to do.

6. Climate Changes

Next, the coastal zone is undergoing severe erosion caused by natural coastal processes including climate changes.

We know that climate changes are a big problem and the effect will be just increasing in a few decades later. Indeed, by the presence of climate changes, it has been worsening the level of erosion in some coastal countries.

Moreover, the rising sea levels caused by climate changes gives the bad impact to bring the risk of sea erosion.

This event affects in accretion and subsidence of the ocean. Indeed, the rising sea level would exacerbate the impacts and increase the flooded area and affect marine life.

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7. Fish Farming and Aquaculture

The loss of shoreline also caused by the excessive enlargement of the fish farms and other aquaculture activities. Besides, it is also caused by the expansion of the fish farms total area. Moreover, people do fish farming and do pumping the sea water some artificial ponds for maintaining the fish breeding.

See also: Ocean Animals

8. Urban activities

Recently, it has shown that the urban growth and development has been increased and this case affects to the coastal zone. The major urban growths bring the change to the coastal living at the expense of agricultural lands, coastal sand dune, and barren soil. Also, urban activities have a role in the construction of the road along the coastal zone. This development of infrastructure affect in changing the coastal environment for sure.

9. Sand dunes and barren soil

The presence of sand dunes and barren soil is actually linked with the coastal erosion. While the average annual rate of the coastal sand dune and barren soil are being decreased, then it is mainly caused by the expenses of fish farming and agriculture purpose resulting in coastal erosion.


As the consequence, sea erosion gives bad effects to both of humans living and the environment. Then, to know what are they, kindly check the following statements below.

  • Shoreline changes

Due to the presence of sea erosion, then it will result in shoreline changes. Indeed, this event is associated with erosion and accretion occurs in the shoreline.

  • Intrusion of Saline Water

As explained before, the rising sea level is one of the major problems which contributes in sea erosion. At this point, the sea level rise will bring the bad impacts such as the intrusion of saline water into freshwater rivers. Indeed, this event will affect to the quality of drinking water resources around the coastal zone.

  • Farming Quality

It has shown that sea erosion can give bad impacts to the farming activities. For instance, the intrusion of saline water can create the growth of algal blooms and enhance eutrophication. As a result, it affects to the ecosystems including the aquatic ones.

  • Tourist and Cultural Sites

With the presence of sea erosion, it makes the land of the beach becomes narrower. As the consequence, this will reduce the beauty of the beach which is associated to the tourist attractions. Furthermore, we know that it is a big problem as we also need to develop some tourist and cultural sites as well.

  • Markets or Economic Problems

As explained before, the sea erosion can cause the decreasing interest of tourist to come into some specific places. Consequently, it will affect to the growth of markets in the coastal zone.

  • Housing and Industries Facilities

If the sea erosion level becomes higher and higher, then it will cause the bad things in human’s living. For instance, the destructive waves which case the sea erosion might threaten the placement of housing and industries facilities.

See also: Effects of Ocean Currents


As sea erosion becomes the major problem in the earth, then we have to discover what effective ways in order to deal with this problem. As a result, there are few effective strategies for dealing with coastal erosion. Here they are.

  • Identifying Sea Erosion Areas

The first thing we can do to reduce the sea erosion level is to identify the areas which are most likely to be affected. With a good knowledge of sea erosion areas, we can identify and discover what treatments and prevention could be done by us. Also, we can do further studies and research of sea erosion areas as well.

  • Structure relocation and debris removal

One of the ways to prevent the sea erosion is by removing the debris. Also, by applying the structure relocation will help to deal with this problem. Indeed, by doing something beneficial will help to recover the bad impacts of sea erosion.

  • Stabilizing the dune with fences and vegetation

To deal with sea erosion, one thing that we can do is to stabilize the dune with fences and vegetation. By using fences along the shoreline, it may help to prevent the erosion. Moreover, the vegetation of the sand can help to rebuild the dune in the coastal zone.

  • Finding Climate Change Solution

As explained before, climate change has a role to the increase of sea level. Consequently, this event affected to the presence of sea erosion. At this point, we have to find a way to reduce the climate change effects by doing something great such as reducing the use of transportation. Hence, if you try to prevent the climate change events by now then at the same time you also help to prevent the event of sea erosion.

  • Protecting Wetland

While wetland is associated with surface water flow, then wetland protection is believed to help to prevent the erosion of the sea. Besides, wetland protection includes the wetland conservation which is the protecting action in preserving areas like swamps, marshes, and bogs. This conservation is believed to bring the balance of the ecosystem. Moreover, wetland protection can improve water quality and store the floodwaters.

See also: Marine Energy

  • Minimizing Human Exposure at Hazardous Events

We all know that human activities take the major role in making the damaged environment. As the consequence, to prevent the sea erosion, we have to minimize the human exposure at hazardous events like doing deforestation and burning the forest. Also, it will be beneficial if we reduce the building of construction along the coastal zone.

  • Restoring Open Space

To support sea erosion prevention, we can restore the open space and wildlife that support coastal communities. With the great awareness, it is possible for us to deal with the sea erosion.

  • Nourishing the Beach

The first thing we can do to deal with sea erosion is by involving the pumping of sand and dumping them from another source onto the beach which is eroding. As a result, we can make the new beach with the addition of the sand. However, this kind of solutions will face the problem too as it cannot stop the erosion cycle. Yet, it can restore the beach by continually adding the sand to deal with the erosive process.

  • Offshore Breakwaters

The next solution to deal with the sea erosion is by installing the offshore breakwater. The work of this one is by slowing down the movement of the incoming waves. As a result, we can install the offshore breakwaters about 200-300 feet from a beach to reduce the water movement. Therefore, this solution can save the beach from the erosion.

  • Installing the Groine

You may unfamiliar with the ‘Groine’ terms. Yet, by installing the groine can help dealing with the sea erosion. Groine itself is a rigid hydraulic structure made of steel and concrete or even wood which is built from the shoreline to interrupt the flow of water and limit the movement of sediment.

  • Beach Lifters

We cannot deny that the technology is very useful to help human’s life. As a result, the application of the technology help in preventing the erosion of the sea. Consequently, there is a technology which can lift a beach upward in elevation. This technology application works when the sands of the beach are elevated, then the incoming currents reduce in speed.

  • Conducting the erosion-related studies and investigations

As we need more study and research about coastal and sea zone. Then, the better studies will discover the great ways in dealing with sea erosion. Also, people need to do more investigations of the sea so that we know the risks, cause, and the further real solutions for recovering the sea erosion.

  • Developing the Right Strategies

Due to some solutions, we can apply in life in order to prevent sea erosion, then we have to develop the right strategies. For instance, we should know which areas that needs the groin installation. With a great implementation of strategies, it is believed that the sea which suffers from the erosion could be recovered.

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To conclude, the presence of larger scale, waves, currents, wind and tides from can cause the erosion and affect to the shoreline. Also, sea level rise contributes in the erosion of the sea so that it becomes a far more complex and serious issue. Indeed, the sea becomes threatened since few decades ago and we have to find the right way to deal with it.

Besides, erosion can be caused by the human activities along coastlines and the presence of large storms and other natural events. Moreover, not also affecting in the coastal zone, but sea erosion has a role in interfering the sea ecosystem and human living as well.

Consequently, we have to spend more money to protect the sea as well as maintaining the beaches and waterways. Yet, we still have a chance to recover the condition of the sea if we really do the hard work for it.

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