Cyngor Sir Ceredigion undertakes annual topographic and LiDAR (Laser Illuminated Detection and Ranging) surveys of a number of beaches located along the Ceredigion coastline.
This data is used to inform an annual monitoring report which then summarises the changes in beach profile seen over a 12 month period.
2014 was the eighteenth year that beach surveys have been undertaken along the coast. Subsequently, there is now a relatively long time period over which data has been collated, and this is progressively enabling the Council to identify long term trends of beach accretion and erosion.
The 15 locations along the coastline at which Ceredigion County Council currently undertakes monitoring at, are:
- Pen Yr Ergyd/Teifi Estuary
- New Quay Bay
- Aberaeron South Beach
- Aberaeron North Beach
- South Marine Terrace (Aberystwyth South)
- Victoria and Marine Terrace (Aberystwyth North)
The objective of the monitoring is to inform local coastal management practices and decisions. As each year of new data is added to the monitoring programme, long-term change and trends are identified with greater clarity. As a result of this data, not only can the decision to intervene be better informed, but the question of how to intervene can also be considered.
The designs of the coastal defence schemes at Aberaeron North Beach and Borth (Phases 1 and 2) were informed by data collated during the ongoing monitoring programme, and the data is now being used to assist with the design future coastal defence schemes at Aberystwyth and Aberaeron South Beach.
With the West of Wales Shoreline Management Plan 2 (SMP2) now being approved by Welsh Government, the data from this monitoring programme can be used to inform the likely long term evolution of the Ceredigion coastline.
The analysis of historical data within the SMP2, likewise, having been used in developing this monitoring programme to date, so that an overall picture of beach evolution can be developed.