ENsuring DUne REsilience against Climate Change | 2 Mers Seas Zeeën


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ENsuring DUne REsilience against Climate Change

Priority Axis

Adaptation to Climate Change

Specific objective

Adaptation to Climate Change

Lead partner

Norfolk County Council (NCC)


Start Date


End Date


Project budget

2 116 635

ERDF amount

1 269 981

ERDF rate



    Common challenge

    Climate change causes sea level rise across the 2 Seas area by 2-4mm each year. This increases risk of coastal flooding x100 in some areas, impacting people, communities & infrastructure. Many traditional defences are old, failing & expensive to replace. A 9km sea wall costs >€88 million but does not provide a permanent, economically sustainable sea defence. Natural ecosystems provide better resilience - dunes naturally flex & evolve to provide a self-replenishing barrier, but this adaptive ability is often negatively affected by poor/reactive management aimed at mitigating erosion/flooding events rather than enhancing dune function. Sand dunes protect 420km of our shared coastline, yet they do not receive the same attention given to more traditional hard interventions. Joint working & crossborder collaboration is poor, lacking input & learning from high quality cutting-edge science, research & design expertise.

    Main Achievements

    In a year that has felt like it lasted 1,000 days, ENDURE is thrilled to have completed two outputs, with a third on the cusp of being completed in early 2021.

    A sharp refocus away from physical delivery towards remote working to push through our mapping tools was needed in April when we were left with travel restrictions, lockdown and bans on outdoor working on pilot sites.

    In Work Package 1, our sand net work moved away from the pilot site and into an indoor facility lab, enabled our work to continue despite the pandemic and produce our report. We managed to press ahead with plans to protect the under pressure dunes at Winterton-on-Sea with rope and posts, and stronger fencing on the dune cliff, protecting 20,000m2 of dunes from human pressure, and visitors from danger at the same time. Little did we know that was to be the last time we could work on site...Still we managed to combine this with installation of people counters to monitor the impact of our rope and post fencing and we'll be able to visualise this as the development of our online data platform continues in 2021.

    From April our attention really turned to finalising work on our now finalised two mapping tools:

    • Firstly a mapping tool, showing marram health and predicted dune growth/erosion, also showing dune resilience at several sites across the 2 Seas area. The methodology enables site managers and decision makers to reproduce the transect to visualise their dune health/resilience to storms and climate change. A truly unique tool in dune management which we cannot wait to share and promote in 2021.
    • Our second tool is a land-use tool, showing how management decisions impact ecosystem services. If a site manager wanted to build a sea wall, how would that effect recreation or wildlife? This tool shows positive and negative impacts of various management methods, and showcases nature based solutions - and dunes - as an essential part of coastal protection.

    In this the year to end all years, there had to be one work package negatively impacted, and this was work package 3. Physical outreach events were largely cancelled, and only two guided walks survived the cull, but at reduced capacity. We hope to be able to deliver more in 2021, and if not, we are working on online content to inform and educate about how our wonderful sand dunes work, and how people can help protect them.

    We will then share all our outputs at our closing conference, week commencing 20 September 2021, save the date!



    Mobiliteit en Openbare Werken (MOW)

    Universiteit Gent

    Centre Permanent d’Initiatives pour l’Environnement (CPIE)

    Centre d’Etudes et d’Expertise sur les Risques Environnement Mobilité et Aménagement (Cerema)

    Hoogheemraadschap Holland Noorderkwartier (HHNK)


    URL / Download

    New mapping tool to visually compare benefits of dune management options (nature-based solutions vs hard engineering) & decide best practice.

    Theme: Climate change - Coastal erosion
    Type: Method/tool
    Target: Coastal zone management organisations - SMEs /enterprises - Universities and research centres

    Early warning system for dunes: using marram grass as a natural indicator for dune health with heat maps to quickly/easily ID vulnerable areas.

    Theme: Climate change - Coastal erosion
    Type: Method/tool
    Target: Coastal zone management organisations - SMEs /enterprises - Universities and research centres