Coastal pollution and climate

The BGS climate change programme is addressing climate change issues through a variety of focused efforts. Potential impacts of climate change include an increase in storm activity and rise in relative sea level which may ultimately remobilise previously buried contaminated sediments.

We are currently assessing the contemporary and historical contamination preserved in coastal and estuarine sediments in order to improve coastal zone management and understand the full implications of climate change.

Our partners include many of the UK's finest universities and the research centres and facilities of the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC).

Selected research

Thames Flood BarrierThames, London, UK

Information on research of contamination of the sediments in the Thames Estuary.

AttenboroughAttenborough Ponds, Nottinghamshire, UK

Environmental forensics: using sewage as biomarkers to tell us about the history of the ponds.

Clyde, UKClyde, UK

Research into accumulations of flame retardants in estuarine sediments in the Clyde River.

Mersey, UKMersey, UK

Sediment contamination of mercury and persistent organic pollutants (POPs) in the Mersey estuary.

Mangrove swamps, ChinaMangrove swamps, China

Persistent organic pollutants in mangrove swamp sediments in China.

New JerseyNew Jersey, USA

Information on a baseline survey of estuarine sediment pollution (mercury, total petroleum hydrocarbons and persistent organic pollutants) in the Barnegat Bay–Little Egg Harbor estuary, New Jersey, USA.


Contact Dr Christopher Vane for more information.