Glossary:Coastal area

Common term: Coastal area, Plural: Coastal areas

Short definition: Coastal areas are local administrative units (LAUs) that are bordering or close to a coastline. A coastline is defined as the line where land and water surfaces meet (border each other). Due to the existence of several measures (for example, the mean or median tides, high- or low-tides), the European Commission has adopted the harmonised use of the mean high tide (EC, 1999) in order to delineate EU coastlines. All other municipalities are non-coastal.

Coastal areas are a classification based on the following two categories:

  • coastal areas: LAUs that border the coastline or LAUs that have at least 50 % of their surface area within a distance of 10 km from the coastline;
  • non-coastal areas: LAUs that are not ‘coastal areas’; in other words, LAUs that do not border the coastline and have less than 50 % of their surface area within a distance of 10 km from the coastline.

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