Liu, Y.; Li, X., and Hou, X., 2020. Spatiotemporal changes to the river channel and shoreline of the Yellow River Delta during a 40-year period (1976–2017). Journal of Coastal Research, 36(1), 128–138. Coconut Creek (Florida), ISSN 0749-0208.
The coastal zone is a sensitive region affected by both human activities and climate change. The shoreline is a crucial component of coastal zones. Shoreline monitoring research has a vital role in managing and protecting coastal ecosystems and communities. This study focuses on measurements of morphological change in the Yellow River channel and the Yellow River Delta (YRD) shoreline during a 40-year period. The lower reaches of the Yellow River continuously changed because of silting, stretching, lifting, swinging, and avulsion, to ultimately, changing course. The location of the mouth of the Yellow River was directly influenced by the swinging and the artificial avulsion. Overall, the shoreline expanded seaward at a decreasing rate over time, but it exhibited distinctively different patterns in two subregions (Diaokou and Qingshuigou). The shoreline in Diaokou displayed a trend of retreating inland, whereas the shoreline in Qingshuigou expanded rapidly towards the sea. The rate of change was greatest near the river mouth. An upward trend in the shape index was found across the YRD and its subregions, reflecting the shoreline becoming more complex over time. Human activities will become an increasingly important factor affecting the development and evolution of the YRD. This study should be useful for coastal engineers, coastal managers, and policy makers in the YRD.