Search This Blog

Monday, January 28, 2013


Read Richard Campanella's article to better understand how
The Corps policies "broke" our coast and only Corps policies can fix it.

"For all the economic gains — and there were plenty — 20th-century hydrological interventions also altered the flux of terrestrial sediment to ocean systems. Particles that once pulsated messily but beneficially from the continent’s interior to its coasts now piled up uselessly behind locks and dams, or in the bedload of slackened currents. Or else they got jettisoned onto the continental shelf, sans any geomorphological or ecological benefit whatsoever. And as the century wore on, ocean currents continued to gnaw away at fragile beaches and barrier islands, and rising sea levels inundated coastal wetlands which were already subsiding under deprivation of fresh water. New residential and commercial development, meanwhile, crept ever closer to surge-prone coasts and deeper into flood plains, egged on by the availability of federal flood insurance and a false sense of security imparted by flood-control structures."

"America’s sediment budget did... not get knocked off balance by sinister or incompetent forces, but rather as an unforeseen consequence of promethean engineering projects that have produced great wealth for American society for generations. No more can we decommission dams and locks for the sake of increasing sediment supply than we can remove levees from the lower Mississippi for the sake of fast-tracking coastal restoration; millions of Americans rely on these engineering structures, and they are here to stay. Nevertheless, we should recognize that they come with a cost, and strategically augmenting the sediment load of rivers as they flow to coasts, particularly by maximizing the beneficial use of dredged sediments, is a good way to reduce that cost. Human intervention skewed North America’s sediment dynamics, and only human intervention can rebalance them."


No comments: