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VAE > Project

Subsidence in River Estuaries in France


The relationship between river estuaries and the built-up environment surrounding them is gaining recognition in light of predicted climate change impacts on sea level and subsidence of urban areas. The case of the Thames river estuary demonstrates how sea level rise in combination with land subsidence and physical encroachment can contribute to elevated risk to physical assets and infrastructure in a river basin. Initiated in 2002, the Thames River Estuary Project (TE2100) continues to work to evaluate the potential impact of climate change on the Thames River floodplain, including the greater London area. This project has identified significant potential impacts which could affect more than 1.25 million people. It also provided a platform upon which to create a preparedness plan and guided development decisions with regard to flood preparedness.

EO Contribution

The purpose of the EOEuropa project is to provide input for similar studies of European river estuaries, where EIB has invested in infrastructures (e.g. port facilities). The project aims to identify and characterise the historical deformation of the ground around the Gironde and Loire estuaries in France, where the main deformation phenomena are coastal lowland subsidence. The deformation of flood defense infrastructure will also be studied, as well as carrying out comparisons with historical events (e.g. floods) and an analysis of the correlation with human activities in the areas.

The terrain motion products are derived using the Persistent Scatterers Interferometric (PSI) technique and contain point-wise information of vertical displacement rates with an accuracy better than a few mm/year.

Technical Officer: Philippe Bally

Starting Date: 2012-01-18

ALTAMIRA INFORMATION SL as supplier - prime
Sogreah as supplier - sub

European Investment Bank as user - buyer
Syndicat Miste pour le Développement Durable de l'Estuaire de la Gironde as user - partner/collaborator
Communauté urbaine de Bordeaux as user - partner/collaborator
Direction départementale des Territoires et de la Mer de la Loire Atlantique as user - partner/collaborator

historical mapping of terrain deformations (Disaster Risk Management)
terrain deformation for coastal lowlands: subsidence monitoring (Disaster Risk Management)
terrain deformation for coastal lowlands: flood defense structure monitoring (Disaster Risk Management)