GEOSS Support for Decision-Making in the Coastal Zone: Managing and
Mitigating the Impacts of Human Activities and Natural Hazards in the
A series of (regional) GEO Workshops organized by the GEO Coastal Zone Community of Practice
Rationale: Increases in coastal urban population and land-use practices in coastal catchments and floodplains have led to rapid and accelerating changes in sediment supplies and increases in nutrient, pollutant and pathogen loadings to coastal waters. These pose serious risks to human health and the capacity of ecosystems to support products and services critical to the survival and well being of human populations, in developed and developing nations alike. Risks are increasing and are likely to be compounded by global climate change. High and immediate priorities for GEOSS are improved forecasts of sea-level rise and associated increases in coastal inundation that may be exacerbated by increases in the frequency of extreme weather. Detecting, predicting, assessing and managing the interplay of coastal urbanization and global climate change are critical to the sustainability of healthy ecosystem and the products and services they provide to human populations. Approaches for carrying out these tasks will necessary differ from country to country in view of the multiplicity of tools, policies, measures, and standards employed for monitoring, assessing and managing risk within the coastal zone. Nonetheless, there remains an urgent need to promote integrated, multidisciplinary and multisectoral coastal and ocean management at the regional level in ways that leverage, support, and enhance the capacity of individual coastal States in developing effective coastal zone policies, robust response mechanisms and risk mitigation strategies.