The objective of the Forum will be to investigate whether existing space-based and in-situ observations can help in providing precise and systematic information about coastal zone evolution in response to extreme events (storm surges, tropical cyclones), natural climate variability, slow processes such as long-term sea level rise, and direct anthropogenic forcing.
The Forum will focus on physical aspects but biological and ecological issues will also be evoked. The main purpose of the Forum is to discuss data need about the various forcing factors and associated variables (sea level, waves& winds and currents in a changing climate, sea water temperature and salinity, precipitation, river runoff, sediment supply, vertical ground motions, land use change, urbanization,…) and induced coastal changes (shoreline morphology, bathymetry, topography, erosion, flooding episodes, salt water intrusion in coastal aquifers, ecosystem degradation, …). Although in situ & airborne datasets will be reviewed (e.g., from tide gauges, GNSS stations, field & airborne sensors, UAVs,…), special focus will be given to remote sensing observations (active microwaves/SAR, altimeters, lidars, visible IR, multi and hyperspectral imagery, including ocean colour imagery,….). The Forum will investigate the potential and capabilities for each observing system to provide information on the forcing parameters and the coastal response and evolution. It will address the issues of data precision, resolution, spatio-temporal coverage and continuity, data gaps, and multi-sensor synergetic use to increase information and knowledge. Although observations inventory and requirements will be the main goal of the Forum, processes and modelling issues will also be briefly discussed. Finally, plan for implementing an international coastal data base for coastal change monitoring, process understanding, and coastal management & decision support will be an output of the Forum, together with a ‘white paper’ to be published in a high-impact journal.