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The role of sea-level changes in the evolution of coastal barriers – An example from the southwestern Baltic Sea

  • According to a basic model, the formation of the coastal barriers in the southwestern Baltic can be divided into four evolutionary stages which are characterized by different rates of sea-level rise and varying relations between sediment supply and accommodation space. This model is tested using the example of a strandplain of the island Usedom, along with a local sea-level curve that reflects even smaller fluctuations of the water table and a detailed chronostratigraphy based on OSL measurements that allows the correlation of the morphodynamics with specific climatic phases. The resulting evolution scheme generally confirms the basic model but the timing of the stages depends on the inherited relief and has to be adjusted locally. A comparison with barriers from the W and SW Baltic region shows that the development during the past 5000 years was controlled by climate fluctuations which caused minor variations of the rather stable sea level and consequential changes in sediment supply, accommodation space and foredune deposition. Progradation decline can mainly be related to cool and windy climate phases which centered around 4.2, 2.8, 1.1, and 0.3 ka b2k, while increasing progradation correlated with warmer climate around 3.5, 2.0, and 0.9 ka b2k. The climate warming and the increasing sea-level rise in the recent past, however, led to shrinking progradation rates and may indicate a critical point beyond which the main progradation trend of the past turns into erosion.

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Author: Reinhard Lampe, Matthias Lampe
Parent Title (English):The Holocene
Publisher:SAGE Publications
Place of publication:Sage UK: London, England
Document Type:Article
Date of first Publication:2021/04/01
Release Date:2021/06/10
Tag:Late-Holocene; SW Baltic Sea; climate fluctuations; coastal geomorphology; eolian activity; foredune progradation; luminescence dating; sea-level change
GND Keyword:-
First Page:515
Last Page:528
Faculties:Mathematisch-Naturwissenschaftliche Fakultät / Institut für Geographie und Geologie
Licence (German):License LogoCreative Commons - Namensnennung