Project title: Sea Level Rise Scenarios Along the Mediterranean Coasts–2
SAVEMEDCOASTS-2 is the acronym for Sea Level Rise Scenarios Along the Mediterranean Coasts. The project aims at preventing natural disasters caused by combined effects of sea level rise (SLR) and land subsidence (LS) in the major exposed coastal zones of the Mediterranean region.
SAVEMEDCOASTS-2 retrieves flood risk scenarios accounting for amplification effects on storm surges, tsunamis and coastal erosion, supports local stakeholders and responds to the needs of populations to face expected potential effects of the rise of sea level in the coming years.
The project undertakes activities in selected areas at risk along the Mediterranean coasts, such as river deltas, lagoons, coastal plains and reclamation areas. Project’s Case Studies are the Ebro river delta in Spain, the Venice lagoon in Italy, the Chalastra plain in Greece, and the Basento reclamation area in Italy, where flood risk scenarios and risk communication actions are implemented. Project’s Study Areas are the Rhone river delta, in France and the city of Alexandria, in the Nile river delta, Egypt, where only the impact of SLR is evaluated.
Why do we study river deltas, lagoons and reclamation areas?
River deltas, lagoons and reclamation areas are among the most valuable wetland regions in the world. These often highly populated zones are productive ecosystems closely connected with human activity, that are exposed to changes in coastal environments as a consequence of climate change and sea level rise.
In addition, geological processes that favor soil compaction make these lowlands to be highly subsident and therefore to sink. Fast subsidence can highly accelerate the rise of sea level, and in turn add on threats to living conditions of local populations with increasing probabilities of flooding and inundation, that may occur also in combination with tides and extreme meteorological events.
River deltas, lagoons and reclamation areas are transition zones between internal and coastal environments; so they are highly sensitive to physical and biological changes that may further influence the integrity of water tables and the coastal zone dynamics at all levels. In addition, the anthropogenic factor makes these areas highly susceptible to infrastructures and ecosystem degradation due to industrialization and pollution.
To assess the current and future changes of these zones in response to sea-level rise, land subsidence and other environmental factors acting in the Mediterranean region and mitigate risks, it is crucial to get high resolution map of the current rates of the areal land subsidence, together with sea level rise projections
What do we do?
High resolution digital maps, subsidence rates measurements, from geodetic and remote sensing data from space, and sea level rise projections based on data from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) are used to evaluate coastal hazard and expected flooding scenarios for 2100. Selected stakeholders are engaged through a structured approach that encourages them to consider the potential impacts of sea level rise for coastal management and facilitates the cooperation with the scientific community and the identification of mitigation and adaptation measures. In order to act today and shape adaptation in future generations a specific attention will be devoted to risk communication for schools.
The activities are framed into 9 Work Packages.
Funds and capitalization
SAVEMEDCOASTS-2 is funded by the European Commission ECHO (Grant Agreement 874398). The project capitalizes results from SAVEMEDCOASTS-1 (www.savemedcoasts.eu ), KnowRISK (Know your city, Reduce seISmic risK through non-structural elements; https://knowriskproject.com/ ) and Tsumaps-NEAM (Tsunami Maps for the NEAM region; http://www.tsumaps-neam.eu/).
The project is a consortium among European research institutions, universities and selected stakeholders.