Nov 18 2014 Posted: 11:34 GMT

An expert on coastal environments will visit NUI Galway on Thursday, 27 November, to deliver a free public talk on coastal climate change. Andrew Cooper is Professor of Coastal Studies at the University of Ulster and co‚Äźfounder of the Centre for Coastal and Marine Research and Centre for Maritime Archaeology. His latest book The Last Beach, which was published this month, is a call to action to prevent global beach destruction.

The talk ‘Human response to coastal climate change: adaptation or resistance’ takes place on Thursday, 27 November, at 4pm in Seminar Room 203 of the Arts and Science Building.

The realisation of climate change and its potential impacts on coastal environments and coastal communities has prompted much activity in the area of ‘adaptation’.

Adaptation is typically viewed as actions in response to climate change that seek to limit its impacts and/or bring some benefit to human society. This talk will consider adaptation actions in response to the twin risks of coastal flooding and shoreline retreat both of which are likely to increase in frequency, rate and magnitude as a result of global climate change. Those measures that involve adaptation of human activities in response to the changing coastal environment are likely to be more sustainable in the longer term, but are politically more difficult to implement. 

Dr Kevin Lynch, Director of the NUI Galway's MSc in Coastal and Marine Environments, and a member of the University's Ryan Institute, said: “Last winter, the Irish coast, countryside and cities were ravaged by a series of intense storms from early December. Coastal communities, their defences and facilities bore the brunt of this onslaught which continued for months. Professor Cooper’s talk will perhaps give us some insights as to how we can prepare for such storms in the future, and plan for the long-term sustainability of our coastal communities in a changing planet.”

Professor Andrew Cooper chaired the Northern Ireland Coastal and Marine Forum for six years. He has been researching coastal geomorphology and coastal zone management worldwide for 25 years and has published more than 200 articles. 

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