Terefenko, P.; Giza, A.; Paprotny, D.; Kubicki, A., and Winowski, M., 2018. Cliff Retreat Induced by Series of Storms at Międzyzdroje (Poland). In: Shim, J.-S.; Chun, I., and Lim, H.S. (eds.), Proceedings from the International Coastal Symposium (ICS) 2018 (Busan, Republic of Korea). Journal of Coastal Research, Special Issue No. 85, pp. 181–185. Coconut Creek (Florida), ISSN 0749-0208.
In Międzyzdroje, a coastal town in Poland, significant cliff retreat has been observed in recent times. It used to be considered mainly a response to storm events with particularly high water levels and wave energy. However, morphology of cliff coasts is shaped not only by the most extreme storm surges or by a number of accompanying processes such as precipitation. Much wider effects are now being linked to the occurrence of series of subsequent storms. This research uses a set of five terrestrial LiDAR surveys carried out between November 2016 and April 2017 to determine short-term cliff erosion associated with two major storm surges and several smaller storms. The surveys covered the whole cliff profile as well as the topography of the adjacent beach.
Results indicate a considerable reduction in beach levels as a first important effect. Frequency of the storm events prevented the beach from recovering between the surges, allowing the waves to directly attack the cliff base. Consequently, the cliff foot line retreated up to 4.7 m. This resulted in an erosion volume exceeding 25.000 m3 within 5 sections of the coastal cliff analysed, which are 500 m long in total.
This work demonstrates that the development of the coastline is not only directly linked with the rate of erosion at given storm parameters. More importantly, the frequency of extreme events has to be considered.