Aps, R., Tõnisson, H, Anfuso, G., Perales, J.A., Orviku, K., Suursaar, Ü. 2014. Incorporating dynamic factors to the Environmental Sensitivity Index (ESI) shoreline classification - Estonian and Spanish examples. In: Green, A.N. and Cooper, J.A.G. (eds.), Proceedings 13th International Coastal Symposium (Durban, South Africa), Journal of Coastal Research, Special Issue No. 70, pp. 235–240, ISSN 0749-0208.
Oil transportation is growing in the Baltic Sea area and especially in the Gulf of Finland where it will reach approximately 180–200 million tons a year by 2020. Growing oil transportation is considerably contributing to the risk of accidental spill-related shoreline oiling. This paper focuses on amending the Environmental Sensitivity Index (ESI) related shoreline classification to local conditions by dynamically changing the categorization of the shoreline in terms of its susceptibility to spilled oil caused by extreme meteorological events. This takes into consideration a number of natural physical factors. The paper presents the results of two European case studies: the Estonian shoreline of the Gulf of Finland (Baltic Sea), and the Spanish coast of the Gibraltar Strait. Susceptibility to spilled oil of some categories of the Estonian shoreline (sandy shores, till shores and gravel shores) occasionally changes over time from low to high sensitivity and back; especially conditioned to the influence of heavy storms. The studies carried out in Spain revealed a well recognizable indirect proportionality between foreshore slope and the tidal range. At many locations, the dynamic morphological characteristics of the beach appeared to be largely determined by contouring and specific conditions that are modifying the initial ESI related categorization of the sandy beaches concerned. The novelty of this work is in attempt to move from the standard ESI related, and locally adapted, static shoreline classification towards more dynamic shoreline monitoring based on characterization of the elements sensitive to oil pollution on shorelines.