Sea Wall in the Maldives and its Sustainability

Photo Courtesy: Jonny Belvedere

Seawalls are considered harmful to beaches, despite being defense structures. Beach nourishment, strengthening awareness and enhancing institutional resilience are seen as more sustainable options.

Abstract: The Small Island Developing States are particularly vulnerable to the peril of climate change. Sea level rise, increase in sea surface temperature, high incidences of drought and flood are some of the vulnerabilities that loom large over such island states. The Republic of Maldives is one such example, which has been publicly advocating for the reduction in greenhouse gas emissions. Despite being one of the least contributors to such emissions, the Maldives faces the highest impact of global warming. Being one of the lowest-lying island nations, it has been undertaking various steps to curb the egregious impacts of environmental catastrophes. One of the response measures taken by the Maldives is the construction of seawalls. This article discusses this, while accenting the drawbacks and benefits associated with the approach.

The author is a Research Scholar at the National Maritime Foundation, New Delhi. The article should be cited as Kapoor R.V. 2020. Sea Wall in The Maldives and Its Sustainability, Geography and You, 20(146): 44-50