Coastal erosion



Why do these landscapes and objects look like they do? What natural processes have caused them to look the way they do? Which are the product of erosion and which are the product of weathering and which are the product of both?

Acid rain
Verdun Gorge, France, France
Etang Long taken from Port de Barlonguère, Pyrenees
Coastal Defences on Spurn Head, Yorkshire, UK



Weathering and erosion

Key Stage 3 Geography: Coasts: Weathering and Erosion from Richard Allaway

Define the following terms →

  • Weathering
  • Physical weathering
  • Freeze-thaw
  • Onion skin / Exfoliation
  • Chemical weathering
  • Biological weathering
  • Erosion
  • Fluvial

Types of waves

[29 September 2007]

Define the following terms →

  • Fetch
  • Hydraulic action
  • Attrition
  • Abrasion
  • Solution

Constructive Waves

Constructive Waves
  • Associated with calm weather.
  • Are less powerful waves.
  • Break on the shore and tend to deposit material.
  • Are responsible for transporting material.
  • Swash is stronger than the backwash.
[28 September 2007]

Destructive Waves

Destructive Waves
  • Associated with storm conditions.
  • Are created when the wave energy is high and there is a large fetch.
  • Tend to remove material from the coast and are therefore associated with erosion.
  • Backwash is stronger than the swash.
[28 September 2007]