The impact of coastal protection on surfing resources is poorly understood and rarely quantified prior to construction. There is an increased requirement for surfing resources worldwide as participation levels in the sport grow. There is also an increased requirement for coastal protection as the occupancy in the coastal zone increases. This research paper takes the first steps towards a schematic categorization of the effect of coastal protection on surfing resources. To do this, we sourced the data through the global network of Surfrider Foundations via questionnaires. These questionnaires enquired about wave quality, crowd levels, stakeholder participation, and the economic importance of surfing to the local area before and after the construction of coastal protection.
The results show that of the 30 surfing resources surveyed, 18 experienced a reduction in wave quality and 12 showed an enhancement, or no change, in wave quality.
The paper provides an explanation of the results by proposing mechanisms of enhancement and reduction of wave quality after the construction of coastal protection. The conclusion states that coastal protection usually has an effect on the surfing resource that may be positive or negative in terms of the outcome on wave quality and crowd levels.