Liu, X. Y.Wang, R. Costanza, I. Kubiszewski, N. Xue, Z. Gao, M. Liu, R. Geng, and M. Yuand. 2019. Is China’s coastal engineered defences valuable for storm protection? Science of the Total Environment. 657:103–107.
China has a long history of building hard engineered coastal defences for storm protection, which enables us toexamine the economic effects of the hard engineering to mitigate storm damage. Examining historical storm im-pacts between 1989 and 2016, a significant negative relationship exists between the relative economic damages(i.e., TD/GDP) by storm and the length of existing hard engineering within the storm swath. This indicates thathard engineered defences play a critical role in storm mitigation. We estimated that the storm protection valueprovided by hard engineered defences in China is CNY 3.18 million/km [US$0.50 million/km] on average, witha median of CNY 1.69 million/km [US $0.27 million]. They provide an annual economic value of CNY 6.04 billionon average. Despite their great contribution to reduce total economic damages from storms, hard engineereddefences are not as efficient as coastal wetlands. Coastal wetlands are more cost effective based on comparisonfrom China and USA. This study highlights the need for the Chinese government to transfer focus from prevailinghard engineered defences to ecosystem-based measure or the combination of both measures to prevent stormdamage in the future.