A Quantitative Study for Evaluation of Coastal Scenery

Ergin, Ayşen
Karaesmen, Engin
Ucar, Baris
Scenery is a resource that has to be evaluated in an objective and quantitative manner to provide a means of comparison against other resource considerations and environmental impact assessments. This article presents the results of a quantitative evaluation of coastal scenery, enhancing the previous public survey questionnaires for Turkey, the U.K., Malta, and Croatia. The technique developed to evaluate coastal scenery uses 26 scenic parameters (of both physical and perceptual characteristics) for the four countries listed above and also for Australia, Ireland, the United States, New Zealand, and Japan, assembled via consultations with coastal users and experts. The weights of the scenic parameters are estimated and, together with a checklist that uses a fuzzy mathematics approach, an evaluation index (D) for each site is estimated for 86 worldwide coastal regions. These sites are further classified into five categories according to the D values they achieved. The results show that human impacts may adversely affect the coastal scenic value of a site. Comparison between assessment grades from experts and those from the public showed good agreement, specifically for human parameters. The results could be quite useful as a guideline for assessing, designing, and managing coastal areas when decisions must be made regarding intensive urban and industrial developments.