Advertisement

Journal of Coastal Conservation

, Volume 23, Issue 5, pp 931–942 | Cite as

Application of system approach framework for coastal zone management in Pärnu, SW Estonia

  • Hannes TõnissonEmail author
  • Are Kont
  • Kaarel Orviku
  • Ülo Suursaar
  • Reimo Rivis
  • Valdeko Palginõmm
Article

Abstract

Due to changes in atmospheric circulation and warmer winters, the frequency of strong westerly storms associated with high sea level in ice-free sea conditions has increased on the western coast of Estonia. This trend is especially dangerous for the sections of depositional seashores along the eastern coast of the Baltic Sea such as Pärnu Bay and its surroundings. Pärnu is the largest city in SW Estonia being a popular summer resort with excellent sandy beaches and relevant infrastructure for tourism. Extreme events that may occur in the Pärnu Bay region are irregular extensive floods and sea ice attacks but also strong erosion of beaches. During the last 50 years, the city has suffered from two remarkably high storm surges and associated inundations. The aim of the paper was to analyze the best solutions for coastal zone management in Pärnu Bay area using a System Approach Framework (SAF). It is based on some new results of geomorphic surveys performed in the study area in 2015–2017, review of previous work as well as results from stakeholder meetings. Some formerly proposed flood defence projects and ideas were re-analyzed and new ideas were proposed to better inform the people about risks and reduce the damage in case of catastrophic events. Based on the analysis of the collected data and discussions with the stakeholders, we concluded that hard coastal protection measures would be too expensive and therefore not reasonable for implementation. Developing different kinds of adaptation measures and raising awareness of the people are the most applicable response options to high storm surges and extensive inundations in the Pärnu Bay region.

Keywords

Baltic Sea Climate change Increased storminess Coastal erosion Coastal flooding Adaptation measures Coastal management 

Notes

Acknowledgements

This study was part-funded by the BONUS-BaltCoast project. BONUS-BaltCoast has received funding from BONUS (Art 185) funded jointly from the European Union’s Seventh Programme for research, technological development and demonstration, and from Baltic Sea national funding institutions and by the Estonian Research Council grants PUT1439 and IUT18-9.

References

  1. Antso K, Kont A, Palginõmm V, Ratas U, Rivis R, Tõnisson H (2013) Changing natural and human impacts on the development of coastal land cover in Estonia. J Coast Res Spec Issue 65:862–867CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Ashley ST, Ashley WS (2008) Flood fatalities in the United States. J Appl Meteorol Climatol 47:805–818CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Benavente J, Del Río L, Gracia FJ, Martínez-del-Pozo JA (2006) Coastal flooding hazard related to storms and coastal evolution in Valdelagrana spit (Cadiz bay Natural Park, SW Spain). Cont Shelf Res 26:1061–1076CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Dawson RJ, Dickson ME, Nicholls RJ, Hall JW, Walkden MJA, Stansby PK, Mokrech M, Richards J, Zhou J, Milligan J, Jordan A, Pearson S, Rees J, Bates PD, Koukoulas S, Watkinson SR (2009) Integrated analysis of risks of coastal flooding and cliff erosion under scenarios of long term change. Clim Change 95:249–288CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Hirsch RM, Ryberg KR (2012) Has the magnitude of floods across the USA changed with global CO2 levels? Hydrol Sci J 57:1–9CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Hopkins TS, Bailly D, Elmgren R, Glegg G, Sandberg A, Støttrup JG (2012) A systems approach framework for the transition to sustainable development: potential value based on coastal experiments. Ecol Soc 17:39.  https://doi.org/10.5751/ES-05266-170339 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. IPCC (2013) IPCC fifth assessment report (AR5). In: Climate change 2013: the physical science basis https://www.ipcc.ch/report/ar5/wg1/ Google Scholar
  8. Jevrejeva S (2000) Long-term variability of sea ice and air temperature conditions along the Estonian coast. Geophysica 36:17–30Google Scholar
  9. Kartau K, Soomere T, Tõnisson H (2011) Quantification of sediment loss from semi-sheltered beaches: a case study of Valgerand Beach, Pärnu Bay, the Baltic Sea. J Coast Res Spec Issue 64:100–104Google Scholar
  10. Kont A, Tõnisson H (Eds.) (2009) Climate change impacts on Estonian coasts. The results of the ASTRA project. Publications of the Institute of Ecology at Tallinn University 11 (in Estonian with English summary), Tallinn, 146 ppGoogle Scholar
  11. Kont A, Aunap R, Jaagus J, Ratas U, Rivis R (2008) Implications of sea-level rise for Estonia. J Coast Res 24:423–431CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Kont A, Tõnisson H, Anderson A, Vilumaa K (2017) Systems approach framework report on whole SAF, study site of Pärnu-Valgeranna. Tallinn University, 51 ppGoogle Scholar
  13. Kunkel KE et al. (2013) Monitoring and understanding trends in extreme storms: state of knowledge. Bull Am Meteorol Soc 94:499–514.  https://doi.org/10.1175/BAMS-D-11-00262.1 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Mäll M, Suursaar Ü, Shibayama T, Nakamura R (2017) Modelling a storm surge under future climate scenarios: case study of extratropical cyclone Gudrun (2005). Nat Hazards 89:1119–1144.  https://doi.org/10.1007/s11069-017-3011-3 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Orviku K, Jaagus J, Kont A, Ratas U, Rivis R (2003) Increasing activity of coastal processes associated with climate change in Estonia. J Coast Res 19:364–375Google Scholar
  16. Orviku K, Jaagus J, Tõnisson H (2011) Sea ice shaping the shores. J Coast Res Spec Issue 64:681–685Google Scholar
  17. Palginõmm V, Ratas U, Kont A (2007) Increasing human impact on coastal areas of Estonia in recent decades. J Coast Res Spec Issue 50:114–119Google Scholar
  18. Recasens RG, Delaney A, Tõnisson H (2018) Coastal management in Estonia through stakeholder engagement and ecosystem management practices. Aalborg University Student Report, Department of Development and Planning, Aalborg, p 42Google Scholar
  19. RPI Estonian Project (1981) Report: protection of Pärnu City against floods 2. Natural conditions of the projecting area, Tallinn (in Russian)Google Scholar
  20. Schernewski G, Bartel C, Kobarg N, Karnauskaite D (2018) Retrospective assessment of a managed coastal realignment and lagoon restoration measure: the Geltinger Birk, Germany. J Coast Conserv 22:157–167.  https://doi.org/10.1007/s11852-017-0496-6 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Sooäär J, Jaagus J (2007) Long-term changes in the sea ice regime in the Baltic Sea near the Estonian coast. Proceedings of the Estonian Academy of Sciences. Engineering 13:189–200Google Scholar
  22. Soomere T, Keevallik S (2001) Anisotropy of moderate and strong winds in the Baltic proper. Proceedings of the Estonian Academy of Sciences. Engineering 7:35–49Google Scholar
  23. Suursaar Ü, Kall T (2018) Decomposition of relative sea level variations at tide gauges using results from four Estonian precise levelings, and uplift models. IEEE J Sel Top Appl Earth Obs Remote Sens 11(6):1966–1974.  https://doi.org/10.1109/JSTARS.2018.2805833 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Suursaar Ü, Kullas T (2006) Influence of wind climate changes on the mean sea level and current regime in the coastal waters of West Estonia, Baltic Sea. Oceanologia 48:361–383Google Scholar
  25. Suursaar Ü, Kullas T, Otsmann M, Saaremäe I, Kuik J, Merilain M (2006) Hurricane Gudrun and modelling its hydrodynamic consequences in the Estonian coastal waters. Boreal Environ Res 11:143–159Google Scholar
  26. Suursaar Ü, Jaagus J, Tõnisson H (2015) How to quantify long-term changes in coastal sea storminess? Estuar Coast Shelf Sci 156:31–41CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Tõnisson H, Orviku K, Jaagus J, Suursaar Ü, Kont A, Rivis R (2008) Coastal damages on Saaremaa Island, Estonia, caused by the extreme storm and flooding on January 9, 2005. J Coast Res 24:602–614CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Tõnisson H, Suursaar Ü, Orviku K, Jaagus J, Kont A, Willis DA, Rivis R (2011) Changes in coastal processes in relation to changes in large-scale atmospheric circulation, wave parameters and sea levels in Estonia. J Coast Res Spec Issue 64:701–705Google Scholar
  29. Wang XL, Feng Y, Compo GP, Swail VR, Zwiers FW, Allan RJ, Sardeshmukh PD (2012) Trends and low frequency variability of extra-tropical cyclone activity in the ensemble of twentieth century reanalysis. Clim Dyn 40:2775–2800.  https://doi.org/10.1007/s00382-012-1450-9 CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Nature B.V. 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute of EcologyTallinna UniversityTallinnEstonia
  2. 2.Estonian Marine InstituteUniversity of TartuTallinnEstonia
  3. 3.Institute of Agricultural and Environmental SciencesEstonian University of Life SciencesTartuEstonia

Personalised recommendations