Holocene morphogenesis at the southern Baltic Sea: Simulation of multi-scale processes and their interactions for the DarssZingst peninsula


A modeling methodology based on a multi-scale hybrid morphodynamic model and representative climatic driving conditions is presented to study the long-term morphological evolution of wave-dominated coasts on a centennial-to-millennial scale. The Darss–Zingst peninsula at the southern Baltic Sea, which developed during the last 6000 years by a combined effect of eustatic sea level change, isostatic movement, meteorological drivers and nearshore sediment dynamics, is selected for a case study. A paleo-Digital Elevation Model (DEM) serving as initial condition is reconstructed by a compilation of recent digital elevation data sets, an eustatic sea-level curve, an isostatic map and dated sediment cores. Representative wind series are generated based on a statistical analysis of paleo-wind data from a simulation with the coupled atmosphere-ocean general circulation model ECHO-G over the last 7000 cal yr. These wind data were calibrated by proxies from lithostratigraphic studies of sediment cores from the central Baltic Sea, and used as climate driving conditions for the morphodynamic model. Based on the reconstructed paleo-DEM and the representative climatic driving conditions, the methodology is applied to reconstruct the Holocene morphogenesis of the Darss–Zingst peninsula since 6000 cal yr BP. Simulation results indicate that the development of the barrier system is a combination of long-term effects of climate change, isostatic crustal movement, wave dynamics and eolian transport with short-term effects of extreme wind events, i.e. storms.
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