Coasts & Estuaries

Coastal and estuarine zones are particularly sensitive to pressure from climate drivers, population and increasing exploitation of resources. Our challenge is to deeply understand the dynamics of and interactions between natural and anthropogenic processes, and to aspire to a sustainable coastal and estuarine management.

Climate change adaptation and integrated management

IMDC offers a full range of specialist consultancy services to public and private sector clients for coastal and estuarine management, from reviewing specific aspects of a development strategy to the implementation of a fully integrated management plan. We assist in establishing the basis for a long-term planning and development of activities, by taking into account land use and adaptation to the effects of climate change. At the same time we consider impacts on landscape, local communities and cultural acceptance as well as 'co-benefits', such as biodiversity conservation/enhancement, sustainable local livelihoods, human health and well-being, etc.  

Hydrometeorological hazards

Economic damage costs from extreme hydro-meteorological events are increasing. IMDC's experts have a profound understanding of the complex processes involved and deliver site specific solutions to prevent and mitigate risks from coastal and estuarine hazards. Specialist consultancy services are offered for risk reduction and social, economic and ecosystem resilience enhancement through a combination of natural, nature-based, non-structural and structural measures, as well as the development and the implementation of early warning and forecasting systems.

Innovative solutions

IMDC is proficient at finding innovative solutions to protect coastlines and estuaries at all levels of design detail. IMDC project designs adopt the building with nature principle. Whenever possible natural and nature-based measures - such as nourishments, wetland restoration or sand-filled geosystems - are promoted. Structural interventions are incorporated when absolutely needed. 

Computer models

Comprehensive numerical modelling of waves, hydrodynamics and sediment transport, including their interactions, is required to investigate different management options and to evaluate and design erosion and flood protection measures. IMDC uses state-of-the-art modelling techniques and model validation methods for all these phenomena, by means of established open source and third-party software models as well as advanced and innovative proprietary software models.