Coastal Environments: Recent Advances in Conservation and Sustainable Development

A special issue of Journal of Marine Science and Engineering (ISSN 2077-1312). This special issue belongs to the section "Marine Environmental Science".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 25 June 2024 | Viewed by 8303

Special Issue Editors


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Guest Editor
School of Science and Technology, Hong Kong Metropolitan University, Homantin Kowloon, Hong Kong, China
Interests: environmental biochemistry; harmful algal blooms; coastal wetland; proteomics

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Guest Editor
Department of Applied Science, School of Science and Technology, Hong Kong Metropolitan University, Homantin Kowloon, Hong Kong, China
Interests: marine and freshwater pollution; aquatic physiology; environmental toxicology; microalgal ecophysiology

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Guest Editor
Department of Applied Science, School of Science and Technology, Hong Kong Metropolitan University, Homantin Kowloon, Hong Kong, China
Interests: ecological services of mangrove swamps; ecological performance of restored landfill; recycling food waste as fish feed; antibiotics consumption in ornamental fish; health risk assessment with a focus on food safety

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Guest Editor
Department of Construction and Quality Management, School of Science and Technology, Hong Kong Metropolitan University, Homantin Kowloon, Hong Kong, China
Interests: environmental monitoring; analytical chemistry; applications of microorganisms; bioremediation of organic pollutants

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Coastal environments are well known for their ecological importance in providing habitat and food to wildlife, and coastal wetlands are known to possess multiple functions such as shoreline erosion prevention, resilience against storms and floods, and recreation. As rapid development and urbanization continues, protecting, conserving, and rehabilitating coastal environments are more urgent and crucial than ever. In this regard, papers providing recent updates of coastal environment research, and current challenges in and solutions to coastal environment conservation and development are called for submission. Suggested themes of submitted manuscripts include the following:

  • Ecological challenges and conservation;
  • Coastal environment degradation and restoration;
  • Impacts and sustainability of coastal development;
  • Bioresources and applications of coastal environments.

Prof. Dr. Fred Wang Fat Lee
Dr. Steven Jingliang Xu
Dr. Wing Yin Mo
Dr. Sidney Man Ngai Chan
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Journal of Marine Science and Engineering is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2600 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • coastal wetland
  • ecology
  • pollution
  • conservation
  • restoration
  • resources
  • application
  • sustainability

Published Papers (8 papers)

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Research

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15 pages, 11116 KiB  
Article
Regional Sediment Management in US Coastal States: Historical Trends and Future Predictions
by Jyothirmayi Palaparthi and Tiffany Roberts Briggs
J. Mar. Sci. Eng. 2024, 12(4), 528; https://doi.org/10.3390/jmse12040528 - 22 Mar 2024
Viewed by 620
Abstract
Sea level rise and natural disasters, such as hurricanes and tropical storms, are resulting in coastal erosion-related problems across the US. Beach nourishment is one of the most commonly adopted solutions for erosion mitigation. Borrow sources for nourishment are often from offshore or [...] Read more.
Sea level rise and natural disasters, such as hurricanes and tropical storms, are resulting in coastal erosion-related problems across the US. Beach nourishment is one of the most commonly adopted solutions for erosion mitigation. Borrow sources for nourishment are often from offshore or upland mines. However, in some areas, sediment availability from known borrow sources is becoming scarce. This suggests that sediment should be considered a non-renewable resource within the framework of long-term planning and coastal management decisions. Regional Sediment Management (RSM), or the beneficial use of dredge material (BUDM), targets inlets for borrowing material and can also be a more cost-efficient strategy that has widely been supported by the US Army Corps of Engineers as a system-based approach. However, not all states have embraced this approach, and a national-scale evaluation of these projects in coastal management and adaptation is needed. This study examines past RSM/BUDM projects in the top ten most highly nourished states in the US and compares those trends to a selection of minimally nourished states from different coasts. Based on the historical trends identified, the volume of sediment required for future RSM/BUDM projects in these areas over the next 50 years is predicted using Auto Regressive Integrated Moving Average (ARIMA) models. Although growth in the total number of RSM/BUDM projects was measured over time, there was a decline in the volume of sediment placed for these projects. Results of the forecasting model suggest that CA, NC, and the FL Gulf Coast could require the highest volume of sediments for RSM/BUDM activities over the next 50 years. Based solely on proximity to inlets for sediment resources, DE, FL Atlantic, and NJ coasts are potential beaches that can increase BUDM activities. This study aims to provide a framework to evaluate the suitability of future RSM/BUDM projects in efforts to mitigate coastal erosion. Full article
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17 pages, 3815 KiB  
Article
Estimation of Silting Evolution in the Camastra Reservoir and Proposals for Sediment Recovery
by Audrey Maria Noemi Martellotta, Daniel Levacher, Francesco Gentile and Alberto Ferruccio Piccinni
J. Mar. Sci. Eng. 2024, 12(2), 250; https://doi.org/10.3390/jmse12020250 - 30 Jan 2024
Viewed by 696
Abstract
The reduction in the usable capacity of reservoirs, which is linked to the ongoing silting phenomenon, has led to the need to remove sediments to allow the storage of greater quantities of water resources. At the same time, however, the removal of sediment [...] Read more.
The reduction in the usable capacity of reservoirs, which is linked to the ongoing silting phenomenon, has led to the need to remove sediments to allow the storage of greater quantities of water resources. At the same time, however, the removal of sediment from the bottom results in the need to manage a large quantity of materials, for which the current prospect of discharge is both economically and environmentally unsustainable. This research work concerns the assessment of the silting volume increment of the Camastra reservoir and the phenomenon of progressing speed based on topographic and bathymetric surveys carried out in September 2022 through the use of a DJI Matrice 300 RTK drone with ZENMUSE L1 LiDAR technology, multibeam surveys, and geophysical prospecting using a sub-bottom profiler. It was possible to estimate the increase in dead volume and compare this value with that obtained from the surveys through a literature calculation model and previous silting data. The used model, which slightly underestimates the silting phenomenon, estimates the volume of accumulated sediment from the original capacity of the reservoir, which is understood as the volume that can be filled with sediment in an infinite time, from which an amount is removed depending on the characteristic time scale of reservoir filling and the level of complexity of the silting phenomenon for a specific reservoir. Furthermore, there is evidence of an increase in the speed of sediment accumulation, which is linked to the more frequent occurrence of high-intensity and short-duration meteoric events caused by climate change, which can lead to an increase in erosion and transport phenomena. Further evidence is provided by the occupation of approximately 50% of the Camastra’s reservoir capacity, which makes sediment dredging policies and interventions a priority, contributing to the practical significance of the present study. In this regard, the main recovery and reuse alternatives are identified and analyzed to make the removal of accumulated material environmentally and economically sustainable, such as through environmental and material recovery applications, with a preference for applications for which sediment pretreatment is not necessary. Full article
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13 pages, 2893 KiB  
Communication
The Impact of Anthropogenic Pollution on Tidal Water Quality in Mangrove Wetlands
by Kit-Ling Lam, Yu-Hin Lam, Angie Ying-Sim Ng, Ken Kwok-Yin So, Nora Fung-Yee Tam, Fred Wang-Fat Lee and Wing-Yin Mo
J. Mar. Sci. Eng. 2023, 11(12), 2374; https://doi.org/10.3390/jmse11122374 - 16 Dec 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 1160
Abstract
Mangrove wetlands are vulnerable coastal ecosystems that provide critical habitats for aquatic life. Tai O is a popular tourist village on Lantau Island, Hong Kong, which is surrounded by mangrove wetlands with rich biodiversity; and this village is also famous for its traditional [...] Read more.
Mangrove wetlands are vulnerable coastal ecosystems that provide critical habitats for aquatic life. Tai O is a popular tourist village on Lantau Island, Hong Kong, which is surrounded by mangrove wetlands with rich biodiversity; and this village is also famous for its traditional stilt houses. However, the untreated municipal sewage from some stilt houses is directly discharged into nearby tidal channels, potentially threatening health of the adjacent mangrove wetlands. In order to evaluate the anthropogenic impact on these wetlands and identify the potential sources of their pollution, this study aimed to evaluate spatial (at the sampling points) and temporal (during weekdays and weekends) differences in the quality of their tidal water, and examine relationships between the water quality and the density of the stilt houses. The results indicated that the water quality was worse during weekends. The ammonia concentrations in most samples exceeded the limits of the Hong Kong Water Quality Objectives, China’s Sea Water Quality Standards, and even the U.S. EPA criterion for fish reproduction. This high ammonia input could potentially adversely affect the mangrove ecosystem, underscoring the need for further comprehensive studies. Moreover, some of the weekend water samples had lower dissolved oxygen levels and were polluted by phosphate. Our Principal Component Analysis revealed that water quality was correlated with stilt house density, suggesting that anthropogenic inputs of untreated sewage was the major source of pollution. These findings highlight that nutrients released from human activities, particularly ammonia and phosphate, must be controlled for a better protection of mangrove wetland ecosystems. Full article
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12 pages, 3589 KiB  
Article
A New Species of Free-Living Nematode (Enoplida: Enchelidiidae) from the Mangrove Wetlands of China
by Huilan Zhu, Yuqing Guo, Haichao Zhou, Yi-Jia Shih, Fenglan Li, Fred Wang Fat Lee, Steven Jingliang Xu and Nora Fung Yee Tam
J. Mar. Sci. Eng. 2023, 11(7), 1412; https://doi.org/10.3390/jmse11071412 - 14 Jul 2023
Viewed by 1123
Abstract
A new species, Belbolla mangrove sp. nov., isolated from the mangrove wetlands of Fujian and Zhejiang Provinces in China, is described and illustrated. Belbolla mangrove sp. nov. is characterized by a pharynx with four bulbs, a small gubernaculum with a short dorsocaudal apophysis, [...] Read more.
A new species, Belbolla mangrove sp. nov., isolated from the mangrove wetlands of Fujian and Zhejiang Provinces in China, is described and illustrated. Belbolla mangrove sp. nov. is characterized by a pharynx with four bulbs, a small gubernaculum with a short dorsocaudal apophysis, four weakly developed precloacal supplements, a conico-cylindrical tail with a terminal spinneret, and the absence of terminal setae. This new species differs from B. vietnamica by the absence of ocelli and the blunt and rounded proximal ends of the spicules. The 18S rDNA GenBank accession numbers of B. mangrove sp. nov. are provided. Full article
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7 pages, 1411 KiB  
Communication
Influence of Oyster Shell Pyrolysis Temperature on Sediment Permeability and Remediation
by Maheshkumar Prakash Patil, Hee-Eun Woo, Seokjin Yoon and Kyunghoi Kim
J. Mar. Sci. Eng. 2023, 11(5), 934; https://doi.org/10.3390/jmse11050934 - 27 Apr 2023
Cited by 3 | Viewed by 1250
Abstract
Permeability is an important aspect of sediment remediation. It is well-known that oyster shells can be used for sediment remediation, however the influence of pyrolysis temperature on sediment permeability remains unknown. In this study, we examined sediment permeability and remediation using crushed oyster [...] Read more.
Permeability is an important aspect of sediment remediation. It is well-known that oyster shells can be used for sediment remediation, however the influence of pyrolysis temperature on sediment permeability remains unknown. In this study, we examined sediment permeability and remediation using crushed oyster shells of less than 5 mm in size that were pyrolyzed at 350 °C (POS350) and 600 °C (POS600) for six hours. Based on the results of the variable head permeability test, POS600 has greater sediment permeability than POS350. In addition, POS600 has greater than POS350 to reduce dissolved inorganic nitrogen (DIN; NH3-N, NO2-N, and NO3-N) and phosphate (PO4-P) from organically enriched sediment because of its higher Ca2+ elution. In conclusion, pyrolysis of oyster shells at 600 °C is more effective than pyrolysis at 350 °C. This finding is true because the transformation of CaCO3 to CaO, which is the source of Ca2+, stimulates pore water flow. Based on these findings, it can be concluded that pyrolyzed oyster shells are beneficial for increasing sediment permeability, thereby helping in the remediation of sediments. Full article
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15 pages, 764 KiB  
Article
Culturable Endophyte Fungi of the Well-Conserved Coastal Dune Vegetation Located on the East Coast of the Korean Peninsula
by Jong Myong Park and Young-Hyun You
J. Mar. Sci. Eng. 2023, 11(4), 734; https://doi.org/10.3390/jmse11040734 - 28 Mar 2023
Viewed by 1507
Abstract
This study aimed to determine the diversity and distribution of endophytic fungi in coastal dune vegetation. Endophytic fungi promote plant growth and protect host plants from environmental stress and pathogens. Plants that have flourished as a result are critical for protecting coastal sand [...] Read more.
This study aimed to determine the diversity and distribution of endophytic fungi in coastal dune vegetation. Endophytic fungi promote plant growth and protect host plants from environmental stress and pathogens. Plants that have flourished as a result are critical for protecting coastal sand dunes from erosion. A total of 361 root-colonizing fungal endophytes were purely isolated from 24 halophyte species comprising all dune plant communities indigenous to a well-conserved coastal area based on morphological differences. Molecular identification and phylogeny using amplified ribosomal RNA sequences and internal transcribed spacer regions identified that the fungal isolates belong to seven classes and 39 genera. Penicillium (43.21%) was the most dominant genera, followed by Talaromyces (16.90%) and Aspergillus (11.91%). Furthermore, these genera present a wide host range. However, 16 other genera exhibited strong host specificity. When compared to other herbaceous or shrub host plant species, Talaromyces predominated as endophytes of the roots of the canopy-forming coastal windbreak tree Pinus thunbergii. Based on Margalef’s, Menhinick’s, Shannon’s, and Simpson’s diversity indices, the root-colonizing endophytes of P. thunbergii had higher morphological diversity. The endophyte fungi associated with five of the coastal plants studied are heretofore unreported. In fact, of all fungal genera characterized here, 13 genera (30%) have not been previously reported as marine fungal endophytes or coastal fungi. The foregoing results suggest that future coastal sand dune conservation studies should examine the biological resources of entire bioclusters and not merely the dominant plants or their endosymbionts. Full article
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Review

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18 pages, 646 KiB  
Review
Untangling Structural and Functional Diversity of Prokaryotic Microbial Assemblage on Mangrove Pneumatophores
by Varsha Bohra, Nora Fung-Yee Tam, Luzhen Chen, Kaze King-Yip Lai, Winnie Lam, Steven Jing-Liang Xu, Hai-Chao Zhou, Tao Lang, Chak-Lam Lee and Fred Wang-Fat Lee
J. Mar. Sci. Eng. 2024, 12(5), 802; https://doi.org/10.3390/jmse12050802 - 11 May 2024
Viewed by 341
Abstract
Mangroves are important coastal wetlands along tropical and subtropical regions. Pneumatophore, a kind of aerial root, is among the prominent components of a mangrove ecosystem, which provides microhabitats for a range of prokaryotic (bacteria and cyanobacteria) microbial assemblages, whose role in the maintenance [...] Read more.
Mangroves are important coastal wetlands along tropical and subtropical regions. Pneumatophore, a kind of aerial root, is among the prominent components of a mangrove ecosystem, which provides microhabitats for a range of prokaryotic (bacteria and cyanobacteria) microbial assemblages, whose role in the maintenance of mangrove ecology often remains neglected. Very few studies are available on pneumatophore-associated prokaryotic microorganisms (PAPMs). The majority of them are related to the microscopic identification of cyanobacteria, with very limited research on the bacterial population, even though they demand more attention. Also, very scarce information is available on biotic and abiotic factors shaping the PAPMs. The objective of this review is to highlight the structural and functional importance of prokaryotic organisms associated with pneumatophores. This review begins with a brief introduction of what mangrove pneumatophores are, then focuses on the PAPMs, accentuating the breadth and depth of information gained from previous research. We further discuss how a combination of a traditional cultivable approach and a newly developed omics approach can be efficaciously employed to untangle PAPMs. This review provides updated information on PAPMs, which will intensify the visibility and necessity of pneumatophore-associated microbial community research. Full article
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32 pages, 9240 KiB  
Review
State of the Art on Fe Precipitation in Porous Media: Hydrogeochemical Processes and Evolving Parameters
by Wenran Cao, Guanxi Yan, Harald Hofmann and Alexander Scheuermann
J. Mar. Sci. Eng. 2024, 12(4), 690; https://doi.org/10.3390/jmse12040690 - 22 Apr 2024
Viewed by 560
Abstract
The mixing of terrestrial groundwater and seawater creates dynamic reaction zones in intertidal areas, where land-derived Fe(II) is oxidized to Fe(III) and then precipitates as Fe hydroxides at the groundwater–seawater interface. These hydrogeochemical processes contribute to the formation of iron bands at the [...] Read more.
The mixing of terrestrial groundwater and seawater creates dynamic reaction zones in intertidal areas, where land-derived Fe(II) is oxidized to Fe(III) and then precipitates as Fe hydroxides at the groundwater–seawater interface. These hydrogeochemical processes contribute to the formation of iron bands at the saltwater wedge (SW) and beneath the upper saline plume (USP). This study provides a comprehensive review of physical and geochemical processes at field scale in coastal areas, explores the impact of mineral precipitation on pore structure at pore scale, and synthesizes reactive transport modeling (RTM) approaches for illustrating continuum-scale soil physio-chemical parameters during the evolution of porous media. Upon this review, knowledge gaps and research needs are identified. Additionally, challenges and opportunities are presented. Therefore, we reach the conclusion that the incorporation of observational data into a comprehensive physico-mathematical model becomes imperative for capturing the pore-scale processes in porous media and their influence on groundwater flow and solute transport at large scales. Additionally, a synergistic approach, integrating pore-scale modeling and non-invasive imaging, is equally essential for providing detailed insights into intricate fluid–pore–solid interactions for future studies, as well as facilitating the development of regional engineering-scale models and physio-chemical coupled models with diverse applications in marine science and engineering. Full article
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