Spits are unique natural environments whose evolution is linked to the adjacent coast and near shore morphology, sediment supply, coastal dynamics and sea-level change. Over the past century, Global Mean Sea Level (GMSL) has risen by 10 to 20 centimetres and many coastal spits represent the first sentinel against coastal submersion.
Scientific research indicates that sea levels worldwide have been rising at a rate of 3.5 millimetres per year since the early 1990s, roughly twice the average speed of the preceding 80 years. This trend, linked to global warming will undoubtedly cause major changes in spit morphology.
Spits are highly mobile coastal landforms that respond rapidly to environmental change. They therefore represent a signature of past environmental change and provide a landform indicator of climate change.