Wave-measuring buoys which could help warn of an impending flood have been strategically placed around the UK coastline as part of a three-year monitoring project, Environment Minister Elliot Morley announced today.
The six hi-tech SmartBuoys will aid flood forecasters by feeding real-time data on wave height and direction to a new website database, Wavenet, located at <a href=’http://www.cefas.co.uk/wavenet’>www.cefas.co.uk/wavenet'</a>.
Large-scale continuous monitoring of wave characteristics will also help improve understanding of coastal erosion risk and the design of coastal erosion defence works.
Wavenet integrates data from the new buoys with existing data from the Met Office, Ireland’s Marine Institute and Shell and Marathon Oil to provide a live, single source of over 20 marine monitoring stations, which is publiclyaccessible and free of charge.
‘Helped by Wavenet, forecasters will now be able to predict wave and tide heights around the country 12, 24 and 36 hours in advance – and more quickly spot and act on potential flood danger,’ said Morley.
The Defra-funded initiative has been implemented by its executive agency CEFAS (Centre for Environment Fisheries and Aquaculture Science) – the scientific research and advisory centre working in fisheries management, environmental protection and aquaculture.