Mangroves As Coastal Bio-Shield: A Review of Mangroves Performance in Wave Attenuation

Ernie Amira Kamil, Husna Takaijudin, Ahmad Mustafa Hashim


Mangroves have been recognized as soft structures that provide coastline protection. The capability of dampening waves helps minimize destruction from catastrophic events including erosive wave attacks, torrential storms, and tsunamis. Mangroves act as the first line of coastal defense in natural tragedies such as during the Super Typhoon Haiyan 2013 and Indian Ocean Tsunami 2004, whereby the leeward mangrove area encountered less damage than the unprotected area. This has further brought the attention of researchers to study the attenuation performance of these coastal vegetations. Based on an extensive literature review, this paper discusses the attenuation mechanism of mangroves, the factors influencing the dissipation performance, studies on mangrove dissipation via different approaches, the dissipation efficiency, mangrove conservation and rehabilitation efforts in Malaysia and implementation of mangrove as coastal bio-shield in other countries. The study highlights that mangrove parameters (such as species, width, density etc.) and wave parameters (such as wave period and incident wave height) are among the contributing factors in mangroves-induced wave attenuation, with different efficiency rates performed by different mangroves and waves parameters. Towards that end, several improvements are proposed for future research such as to incorporate all influencing dissipation factors with specific analysis for each species of mangroves, to perform validation on the studied mangroves attenuation capacity in different settings and circumstances, as well as to address the extent of protection by the rehabilitated mangroves. A systematic and effective management strategy incorporating ecological, forestry, and coastal engineering knowledge should be considered to ensure a sustainable mangroves ecosystem and promising coastline protection by mangroves.


Doi: 10.28991/cej-2021-03091772

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Mangroves Ecosystem; Wave Dissipation; Coastal Protection; Rehabilitation; Conservation.


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