Longshore sand transport estimates along the Mediterranean coast of Israel in the Holocene

D. Zviely, E. Kit, M. Klein

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The Nile littoral cell, one of the world's longest, runs 650 km along the southeastern Mediterranean, from Abu Quir Bay near Alexandria, Egypt, to Haifa Bay on the northern Israeli coast. Haifa Bay constitutes the northernmost final depositional sink of Nile-derived quartz sand, transported from the Nile delta by longshore currents generated by approaching breaking waves. The northward net sand transport along the Mediterranean coast of Israel results from larger waves approaching from west-south-west and south-west compared to their counterparts from west-north-west and north-west. This study utilizes an extensive new database gathered from sediment drill cores, marine geophysical maps and field observations to measure the volume of sand deposited in Haifa Bay and the adjacent Zevulun Plain during the Holocene. It then compares this volume to recent data, including measurements of sand accumulation along Haifa Port's main breakwater (constructed in the southern entrance of the bay) as well as longshore sand transport estimates along the northern Carmel coast. Research findings estimate the annual average quantity of sand transported to Haifa Bay throughout the period at 80,000-90,000 m3. The findings further conclude that this amount has not changed appreciably over the past 75 years. Evaluating calculated values over the long term, it is suggested that the characteristics of longshore sand transport along the coast of Israel have not changed significantly during the past 7900-8500 years. It is obvious that this conjecture should be treated with reservations.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)61-73
Number of pages13
JournalMarine Geology
Issue number1-4
StatePublished - 27 Mar 2007


  • Haifa Bay
  • Nile littoral cell
  • coastal processes
  • longshore sediment transport (LST)
  • paleo-coastlines
  • sand

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Oceanography
  • Geology
  • Geochemistry and Petrology


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