The stabilization of Sefton Dunes: the impact of climate and management techniques

Irene Delgado-Fernandez, Phil Smith, Paul Ashton, Nicholas O'Keeffe

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstractpeer-review


The level of resilience of coastal dunes depends, among other factors, on the degree to which they are vegetated. The presence of bare sand plays an essential role in dune field dynamics, creating active aeolian transport paths and enhancing landforms and species diversity. The 20th century has seen dramatic resealing of coastal dunes worldwide. There is an overall consensus to relate vegetation over-growth with climatic shifts but the role played by inappropriate management techniques remains uncertain. This study analyses changes in vegetation over the last 60 years at Sefton Dunes, the largest coastal dune field in England. Results indicate an overall dramatic loss of bare sand from the 1940s to the 1980s, and system stabilization in the 1990s-2000s. Direct human intervention introduced strong variability among ownership sectors and is responsible for at least 40% loss of bare sand due to differences in management techniques.
Original languageEnglish
Publication statusPublished - 2014
Event20th Windy Day - School of Geography and Environment, University of Oxford, United Kingdom
Duration: 8 Oct 2014 → …


Conference20th Windy Day
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom
Period8/10/14 → …


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