February 10, 2018

Against the Tide: The Battle for America's Beaches by Cornelia Dean PDF

By Cornelia Dean

ISBN-10: 0231084188

ISBN-13: 9780231084185

ISBN-10: 0231084196

ISBN-13: 9780231084192

American citizens like to colonize their shorelines. but if storms threaten, high-ticket beachfront building always takes priority over coastal environmental matters -- we rescue the structures, no longer the seashores. As Cornelia Dean explains in opposed to the Tide, this trend is resulting in the fast destruction of our coast. yet her eloquent account additionally deals sound recommendation for salvaging the stretches of pristine American shore that remain.The tale starts with the story of the devastating storm that struck Galveston, Texas, in 1900 -- the deadliest normal catastrophe in American historical past, which killed a few six thousand humans. faulty citizens built a wall to avoid one other tragedy, however the barrier ruined the seashore and finally destroyed the town's booming inn company. From harrowing debts of usual failures to lucid ecological causes of traditional coastal tactics, from experiences of human interference and development at the shore to clear-eyed elucidation of public coverage and conservation pursuits, this e-book illustrates in wealthy aspect the conflicting pursuits, momentary responses, and long-range imperatives which were the hallmarks of America's love affair along with her coast.Intriguing observations approximately America's seashores, earlier and current, comprise discussions of storm Andrew's attack at the Gulf Coast, the 1962 northeaster that ravaged a thousand miles of the Atlantic shore, the beleaguered shorelines of latest Jersey and North Carolina's swiftly vanishing Outer Banks, and the sand-starved coast of southern California. Dean offers dozens of examples of human makes an attempt to tame the sea -- in addition to a wealth of lucid descriptions of the ocean's counterattack. Readers will delight in opposed to the Tide's painless direction in coastal procedures and new standpoint at the seashore.

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Additional info for Against the Tide: The Battle for America's Beaches

Sample text

In other words, how could they keep the builders off the beach? The question was not new. Eleven years earlier, a small group of coastal geologists had confronted it at a conference at the Skidaway Institute of Oceanography, in Savannah, Georgia. They summed up their work in a twelve-page report whose conclusions were stark: 1. People are directly responsible for the “erosion problem” by constructing buildings near the beach. For practical purposes, there is no erosion problem where there are no buildings or farms.

It retains its approximate beach width and configuration, only now it is further inland. 9 Onshore winds also help islands move inland by blowing sand from the beach into the dunes and from there further inland. Sand fences that beachfront property owners use to trap sand and build protective dunes in TH E GR EAT B EAC H 23 front of their homes take advantage of this process. Even something as small as a sprig of beach grass or a tiny piece of driftwood may be enough of a barrier to trap these grains of sand and form the base of what will grow into a dune.

If they don’t trap enough sand, they don’t work. If they trap too much sand, they overflow and dump the excess sand into deep water, where it may be lost to the beach. Usually, groins cause more problems than they cure. They aren’t much to look at and they make long walks along an unobstructed beach a thing of the past. On beaches with any kind of surf, they pose a potentially serious hazard to swimmers. And they leave property owners downdrift bereft of sand. Usually, these property owners respond in the only way they can, by constructing their own groins and sending the problem down the coast to the next guy.

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Against the Tide: The Battle for America's Beaches by Cornelia Dean

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