Implications of the cementation of beach sediments for the recreational use of the beach

Beach sediment cementation (beachrock formation) is a sedimentary process that can transform significant sections of beaches into rock outcrops. This contribution reports the results of two questionnaire surveys (one focusing on foreign tourists and the other on local people) carried out in coastal resorts of the island of Lesbos (Greece), on the perceptions of beach users regarding the impacts of beachrocks on their recreational activities. The survey focusing on foreign tourists showed that the majority of the interviewees took notice of the formations and commented negatively on them. Although most of the interviewees did not consider beachrocks a significant safety risk, a considerable proportion of the sample stated that beachrocks influenced their beach ratings that they would prefer beachrock-free beaches and would be willing to contribute financially to preventative and protective measures. In contrast, the results of the survey focusing on local people, who are more familiar with the phenomenon, showed a high perception of beachrock-related risks and limited beachrock tolerance. In addition to the safety risks that the irregular, slippery, beachrock surfaces may pose to beach users, beachrocks may also degrade beach aesthetics. promote beach sediment erosion and decrease the beach carrying capacity. As beachrocks are a common attribute of tropical, subtropical and low-temperate beaches that are typically associated with major tourist destinations, and are likely to spread under global warming conditions, they may be considered as a significant threat to the coastal tourist industry. (c) 2008 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.


Beach management, Beach carrying capacity, Beach safety, Risk perception, Coastal tourism, Beachrocks

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Vousdoukas Michalis, Velegrakis Adonis F., Kontogianni Areti, Makrykosta Efstratia-Natalia (2009). Implications of the cementation of beach sediments for the recreational use of the beach. Tourism Management. 30 (4). 544-552.,

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