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coastal environment

Keywords associated with coastal environment

TermMeaning
Coast Region where the land meets the sea/ocean.
Dynamic coastal environment A coast that is subjected to rapid and extreme changes e.g. sandy beaches.
Waves They are caused by the transfer of energy from the wind blowing over the surface of the sea.
Tide Is the daily rise and fall of the sea level. It is caused by the attraction of the moon and the sun.
Currents The flow of a liquid (e.g. water) or a gas (e.g. water vapours).
Geology The study of solid Earth, the rocks of which it is composed, and the processes by which they change.
Ecosystem A collection of organisms and the natural surroundings they interact with.
Fetch The maximum distance of water over which winds can blow and form waves.
Wave refraction Is the change in wave direction. The depth of water present at a coast is different depending on the features present. As wave approaches a coast its progress is modified due to friction from the seabed, halting the motion of waves.
Swash Water movement up a beach.
Backwash Water movement down a beach.
Abrasion /Corrasion Particles carried by the waves crash against the cliffs, eroding the cliffs.
Hydraulic action When a wave breaks against a cliff, it causes air which is trapped within cracks, to be compressed suddenly. When the water retreats the air is allowed to expand, often explosively. This process is known as hydraulic action.
Attrition Rock particles carried by the waves crash against each other and are broken up into smaller particles.
Solution A chemical weathering process in which a material is dissolved.
Longshore drift It is the lateral movement of sand and shingle along beaches.
Destructive waves Are high energy waves,created from big, strong waves. Have short wave length and are high and steep. They can travel over a long fetch due to powerful wind blowing over their water surface for a long time. Their backwash is stronger than their swash.
Headland It is an area of land that juts out into the sea. It is made up of harder rocks that are more resistant to the erosive powers of the sea.
Cliff A large area of rock or a mountain with a very steep side, often at the edge of the sea or a river.
Cave A large natural hole in the side of a cliff or hill, or under the ground.
Arch Due to prolong erosion, caves on either side of a headland are developed which later joined together to form a natural arch.
Stacks They are tall columns of rocks. They are formed when a natural arch collapsed leaving upright sections of isolated rocks behind.
Shore platform A rock shelf fringing the coastline between the low and high water marks.
Bay A part of the sea that is partly enclosed by a curve in the land.
Spit Long ridges of sand and shingle attached to land at one end.
Tombolo A spit linking an island to the mainland.
Beach A gently sloping deposit of sand, pebbles or mud, deposited along the coast.
Created by: edugan_hoh