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Quote of the Day - I have the world's largest collection of seashells. I keep it on all the beaches of the world... perhaps you've seen it. - Stephen Wright
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USACOE 3, Turtles 0, Beach Replenishment Still Undone

Hurricane Katrina also wiped away some of Florida's coastline, and in addition to the Army Corps of Engineers' efforts to refortify the dikes in New Orleans, the USACOE is also restoring beachfront in Destin, Florida.  Beachfront homeowners were upset because the beach replenishment plan would create a public beach in front of their previously private beach.  The plan was to add 80 to 100 feet of beachfront anlong a five-mile stetch. 

The ACOE met with some stiff resistance from a citizen property owners group made up of these beachfront homeowners, but the ACOE eventually won the right to drege the seabed and pump the sand onto the Destin beach in Walton County.  

In the course of dredging the seabed, the ACOE apparently has killed three endangered turtles, and dredging is now suspended.  The ACOE has issued advisories about turtles in the past, but it's not a high priority.  There's been nothing about protecting sea turtules posted in the ACOE's newsroom of press releases for the last five years.  The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration issues marine take permits, and it appears the ACOE has such a permit for this project.  The dredging will commence again when the permit renews and takes can recur. 

Maybe this year's hurricane season will shift sand to the beach, and avoid the ACOE's dredging.  Otherwise, the citizens of Florida will have to choose between building up beachfront property and preserving sea turtles.  Otherwise, maybe the ACOE can truck the sand from an inland location and dump it on the beach, or leave Mother Nature to her whims. 

New Orleans can't keep the water out, and Florida can't bring the sand to the beach.  What's the message here?

Printer friendly page Permalink Email to a friend Posted by J. Craig Williams on Friday, May 12, 2006 at 14:44 Comments Closed (0) |
 
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