chapter  4
16 Pages

Geomorphological Development of Modern Coastlines: A Review

WithDavid Hopley

This chapter considers why coastal landform development in some areas is much more advanced than might be expected. Bloom revived some older speculation on coastal isostatic deformation by the post-glacial rise of sea level. He suggested that the load of water added to the continental margins by the transgression would produce subsidence of coastal areas in proportion to the average depth of water in the vicinity. The establishment of rates of coastal processes can be made on three scales: short-term measurements, for example, of beach changes by dumpy level survey, or similar short-term surveys of rocky shore erosion using micro-erosion meters; surveys of changes in historic times using photographs, maps and charts. Australian examples of coastal geomorphology may be compared with northern hemisphere equivalents to indicate that the length of time that the sea has stood in its present position relative to the land is an important factor in coastline development.