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Home arrow Articles by Topic arrow Erosion arrow Rapid shoreline building on a stormy coast
Rapid shoreline building on a stormy coast PDF Print
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Articles - Erosion
Written by Darren King,Terry Hume, and Scott Nichol, Water and Atmosphere magazine, 2005, NIWA   
Wednesday, 01 July 2009

Plots of the shoreline positions at North Piha over the period 1940 to 2000. Note how the shoreline in 1940 was at the seaward edge of the houses behind Takatapu (Monkey Rock); the shoreline has advanced well seawards of the rock in the last 60 years.

Coastal managers and the public must recognise that the rapid advancement of the shoreline in the last century and associated increase in ‘available’ coastal land at Piha may be a temporary situation that nature could well reverse over management time scales.

Along Auckland’s stormy west coast, waves and winds have carried ashore large amounts of sand to fill small embayments like Piha Beach. Over the last century a rapid influx of sand has added a substantial area of new land to Piha. Understanding the dynamics of this process is important for managing our coastal environments, particularly in relation to how we make decisions about coastal hazards and how close to the sea we can safely build.

So where does the sand come from at Piha? How much is stored within the system? Has the rate of sand delivered to Piha varied through time, and what are the implications for building by the sea? Research at NIWA and the University of Auckland looks for the answers to these questions through a variety of means.

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Last Updated ( Wednesday, 01 July 2009 )
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