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Innovation & Research

Issue No. 82 IN THIS ISSUE

Bridges Lightweight composite bridge decks 2

Buildings Glass in buildings

Construction process Soft formwork

Developing countries Biofuel production in East Africa

Design Therapeutic design for healthcare

Energy New measurement network

Flood risk management Tools for FRMplanning

3 4 4 6 3 7

IT Grid-friendly connections for renewables 8

Innovation Innovate to survive conference success 5 New measurement network


Internal environment Therapeutic design for healthcare

Materials Glass in buildings

Renewables Biofuel production in East Africa Grid-friendly connections

Water Water management challenges

6 3 Lightweight composite bridge decks 2

4 8

Next generation offshore wind towers 2 7 Also at August 2010 Evaluating climate change impacts on

English coastal zone habitats Coastal habitats are likely to be impacted both by sea-level rise and by changes in the frequency of coastal flooding. An assessment of the potential impacts is being carried out to provide an evidence base on whichmanagement strategies for habitat adaptation to climate change can be developed. The work is being carried out by a teamof experts including HRWallingford’s Environment Group.


he consequences of climate change for coastal zone habitats are being evaluated at a national scale. The work for this

Defra-Natural England funded study supports adaptation to climate change and planning for replacement habitat, and focuses on Biodiver- sity Action Plan (BAP) habitats behind both the natural and defended coastline. HRWallingford is using the latest UK Cli-

mate Projections (UKCP09) within a coastal flood risk model to investigate future flooding conditions. Habitat sensitivity criteria are being specifically developed to enable the ef- fects of inundation by brackish or saline inun- dation. The national scale study quantifies the sensitivity of the coastal zone habitat to flood duration and flood frequency. The flood risk model takes into account the

probability of a particular flood loading event occurring and the consequences arising from the flooding. The model comprises a novel ap- plication of risk assessment methods in an en- vironmental context, including an exciting use

of climate change scenarios in the structured risk assessment framework to predict the future risks to coastal habitats. The work is identifying areas of BAP

habitat around the English coasts that will potentially be damaged or lost under different climate change and flood risk management scenarios. The results will help to support Defra and Natural England in planning for fu- ture habitat creation requirements. The techniques developed, such as the

robust risk assessment framework, are applicable throughout the world and represent significant advance in how coastal engineering society can assess and respond to climate change.

For further information, please contact Valerie Bain, Senior Scientist, Environment Group, HR Wallingford (01491 822418; E-mail:

Coastline at Holkham, Norfolk Innovation & Research Focus Issue 82 AUGUST 2010 1

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