Wave attenuation by salt marsh vegetation

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstractScientific

49 Downloads (Pure)


Salt marshes are a characteristic feature of estuaries and coastal seas. They are found in the upper coastal intertidal zones between land and water, which are regularly flooded by tides and surges. They are covered with salt-tolerant vegetation types, such as herbs and grasses. Sheltering from continuous intense hydrodynamic forcing by waves and currents and sufficient supply of (fine) sediment are the two main requirements for salt marsh development. The presence of vegetation accelerates the sediment settlement by reducing the wave forces on the bed material. Addition-ally, the roots of the plants stabilize the accumulated sediments and amplify the process of subsoil drainage, consoli-dation and compaction. Salt marshes and the intertidal flats in front form a coherent system with many mutual dependencies.
Coastal flood risk reduction by creating and restoring ecosystems is increasingly seen as a promising supplement to conventional coastal engineering methods. Salt marshes, mangrove forests and reed fields can act as a vegetated foreshore in front of a coastal dike. In such a combined dike-foreshore system, the foreshore plays a role in attenuating storm waves, whereas the dike retains the surge and the remaining wave energy. The current study focuses on the process of wave attenuation by vegetation and, vice versa, the process of breakage of vegetation due to wave action.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages2
Publication statusPublished - 2016
Event18th Physics of Estuaries and Coastal Seas Conference, 2016 - Scheveningen, The Haque, Netherlands
Duration: 9 Oct 201614 Oct 2016
Conference number: 18


Conference18th Physics of Estuaries and Coastal Seas Conference, 2016
Abbreviated titlePECS 2016
CityThe Haque
Internet address


  • salt marsh
  • vegetation
  • wave attenuation
  • estuaries


Dive into the research topics of 'Wave attenuation by salt marsh vegetation'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this