Monday, July 09, 2007

Can money hold back the sea?

We'll find out on Nantucket. As a beach erodes, wealthy homeowners are engaged in a high-stakes battle to "just say no" to coastal erosion.

A foolish project on a geological scale, but one that makes sense in the here and now. What to do with a tenuous piece of land treasured by people with large treasure chests?

The Sconset Beach Preservation Fund is drawing a line in the sand and saying no to further erosion. They're looking to spend $25 million of their own money to dredge sand offshore, dump it on the beach, and then watch it slowly erode away. They understand that it's a temporary solution, and they'll likely have to do it again in a few years to keep their beach. Check out this interesting powerpoint presentation on the erosion control plan.

The amount of sand is big. For now, they want to move 260,000 dump truck loads. That's right, two hundred sixty thousand loads.

Strong arguments are made on both sides, possible impacts to marine life vs. cultural preservation. An interesting twist is that some of those arguing are used to getting their way in life. Like Cape Wind, the wind power electricity generation station proposed in Nantucket Sound, this is no ordinary coastal development vs. environmental protection fight. (btw, lemme know if you wanna see blogfish do Cape Wind)

Folks, it ain't gonna work. You may win a few years, but the great mother ocean will take what she wants. And she seems to want your land.


Ed Bruske said...


I've nominated you for a 'Bloggers for Positive Global Change' award. Check out my blog post today for the details.

Ed Bruske

Tracy Rouleau said...

Hi Mark,

I'd love to see blogfish comment on "cape wind"!!!