Managing the coast in a changing climate

This report by the CCC’s Adaptation Committee investigates the long-term challenges of managing England’s coastline against the backdrop of a changing climate.

Overall, we conclude that the current approach to coastal management in England is unsustainable in the face of climate change.

The key findings are:

  • Coastal communities, infrastructure and landscapes already face threats from flooding and coastal erosion. These threats will increase in the future.
  • In the future, some coastal communities and infrastructure are likely to be unviable in their current form. This problem is not being confronted with the required urgency or openness.
  • Sustainable coastal adaptation is possible and could deliver multiple benefits. However, it requires a long term commitment and proactive steps to inform and facilitate change in social attitudes.