Climate Smart Lab members have recently published a study on the limitations of current coastal erosion assessments under climate change in the journal of the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences, Ambio. This review article, entitled Coastal erosion and climate change: A review on coastal-change process and modeling, is delivered by the first author Tianze Pang, corresponding author lab director Dr. Xander Wang, and coauthors Rana Ali Nawaz, Genevieve Keefe and Toyin Adekanmbi.

The research team pointed out that current understandings and responses toward coastal erosion are not resilient to future climate change without clearly considering the coastal-change processes. It is worth mentioning that this article from Climate Smart Lab, as their first publication in the field of coastal erosion, marks a significant early step in the lab’s focusing on the environmental security of PEI coastal communities. Relevant research outcomes to support the coastal protection and adaptation will be continuously delivered by the lab in the future.


Coastal erosion is a normal process of nature. However, the rate of coastal erosion, and the frequency and intensity of coastal flooding events, are now on the rise around the world due to the changing climate. Current responses to coastal erosion are primarily determined by site-specific factors, such as coastal elevation, coastal slope, coastal features, and historical coastline change rate, without a systematic understanding of the coastal-change processes in the context of climate change, including spatiotemporal changes in sea level, regional changes in wave climate, and sea ice coverage. In the absence of a clear understanding of the coastal-change processes, most of the current coastal responses have been built upon a risky assumption (i.e., the present-day coastal change will persist) and are not resilient to future climate change. Here, we conduct a literature review to summarize the latest scientific understanding of the coastal-change processes under climate change and the potential research gaps towards the prediction of future coastal erosion. Our review suggests that a coupled coastal simulation system with a nearshore wave model (e.g., SWAN, MIKE21, etc.) can play a critical role in both the short-term and long-term coastal risk assessment and protective measure development.

Read more at: