European Initiative for Sustainable Coastal Erosion Management

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Citation: "'A considerable amount of the European Union’s coast is currently eroding despite the development of a wide range of measures to protect shorelines from eroding and flooding. The prospect of further sea level rise due to climate change and the heritage of mismanagement in the past imply that coastal erosion will be a growing concern in the future. This motivated the European Parliament in 2001 to initiate a project on developing coastal erosion policy recommendations and requested the European Commission to launch the call for tenders “Service contract concerning coastal erosion – evaluation of the needs for action” (ENV.B.3/SER/2001/0030)."

EUROSION is a project commissioned by the General Directorate Environment of the European Commission, which was won by a consortium led by the National Institute for Coastal and Marine Management of the Dutch Ministry of Transport, Public Works and Water Management. The implementation of the project started in January 2002. The project was expected to achieve its objectives by May 2004 and had a budget of five million euros.

EUROSION is based on the assumption that coastal erosion is a phenomenon that can never be completely controlled but can be managed in an economically and ecologically sustainable fashion.

As part of its objectives, EUROSION has produced a GIS database at scale 1:100,000 meant to provide baseline information on the different factors influencing coastal erosion processes and the value of assets at risk. The full GIS database is now part of the Geographical Information System of the European Commission (GISCO) and has to be requested directly to EUROSTAT.