DOI: 10.1029/2023gl105323 ISSN: 0094-8276

Impacts of Climate Change on Coastal Hydrodynamics Around a Headland and Potential Headland Sediment Bypassing

Danghan Xie, Zoe Hughes, Duncan FitzGerald, Silke Tas, Tansir Zaman Asik, Sergio Fagherazzi
  • General Earth and Planetary Sciences
  • Geophysics


Shorelines face growing threats due to climate change and diminishing sand supply. Coastal headlands, common rocky features along coastlines, are crucial in shaping hydrodynamics and sediment transport. Yet, the influence of future climate conditions, including sea‐level rise (SLR) and intensified storm energy on complex shorelines with headlands has remained relatively unexplored. In this study, we model changes in hydrodynamics and headland bypassing under different SLR and higher storm wave scenarios. Our findings reveal the formation of circulation cells on both sides of a headland, where wave energy converges around the headland zone. Future climate conditions result in larger storm waves on the beach. However, SLR enhances nearshore currents through a landward shifting of the circulation cells, while higher storm waves intensify offshore flow currents due to the seaward movement of the cells. This effect, in turn, increases the potential for headland sediment bypassing.

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