Estimating the risk of loss of beach recreation value under climate change
Shoreline recession due to the combined effect of waves, tides and sea level rise is increasingly becoming a major threat to beaches, one of the main assets of seaside tourist destinations. Given such an uncertain future climate and the climate-sensitive nature of many decisions that affect the long term, there is a growing need to shift current approaches towards probabilistic frameworks able to take uncertainty into account. This study contributes to climate change research by exploring the effects of erosion on the recreation value of beaches as a key indicator in the tourism sector. The new paradigm relates eroded sand to geographic and socioeconomic aspects and other physical settings, including beach type, quality and accesses, yielding monetary estimates of risk in probabilistic terms. Additionally, we look into policy implications regarding tourism management, adaptation and risk reduction. The methodology was implemented in 57 beaches in Asturias (north of Spain).