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Coastal vulnerability assessment: a case study of Samut Sakhon coastal zone

Author(s): Farida Duriyapong | Kanchana Nakhapakorn

Journal: Songklanakarin Journal of Science and Technology
ISSN 0125-3395

Volume: 33;
Issue: 4;
Start page: 469;
Date: 2011;
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Keywords: coastal vulnerability index | physical process vulnerability | socio-economic vulnerability | Samut Sakhon coastal zone | GIS

The Samut Sakhon coastal zone (~41.8 km), which was selected as a study area due to its low-lying topography, hasbeen increasingly impacted by climate change and erosion processes affecting the local community. This study examined thevulnerability area in this region by combining a physical process vulnerability index (PVI) and a socio-economic vulnerabilityindex (SVI). Four physical variables (coastal slope, coastal erosion rate, mean tidal range, and mean wave height) and foursocio-economic variables (land use, population density, cultural heritage, and roads/railways) were employed. The result wasa single vulnerability indicator of a coastal vulnerability index (CVI) showing that the high vulnerability area, covering anarea of 1.3 km2 (0.45% of total study area), was located in Ban Bo, Ka Long, Bangyaprak, Bangkrajao, Khok Kham, Na Kok,and Puntainorasing. The moderate vulnerability area covered an area of 28 km2 (9.5% of total study area), the low vulnerabilityarea 180 km2 (60.56% of total study area), and the very low vulnerability area 88 km2 (29.52% of total study area).The CVI map indicated that it was highly differentiated and influenced by socio-economic indicators, rather than physicalindicators. However, comparison between the different results of the PVI and SVI can contribute to understanding the variabilityand constraints of vulnerability. The results of this investigation showed that the study area was more correlated withaspects related to socio-economic characteristics than physical parameters.

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