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

By Cornelia Dean

Americans like to colonize their shorelines. but if storms threaten, high-ticket beachfront development constantly takes priority over coastal environmental matters -- we rescue the constructions, no longer the shores. As Cornelia Dean explains in opposed to the Tide, this development is resulting in the speedy destruction of our coast. yet her eloquent account additionally bargains sound recommendation for salvaging the stretches of pristine American shore that remain.The tale starts off with the story of the devastating typhoon that struck Galveston, Texas, in 1900 -- the deadliest common catastrophe in American heritage, which killed a few six thousand humans. inaccurate citizens developed a wall to avoid one other tragedy, however the barrier ruined the seashore and finally destroyed the town's booming hotel company. From harrowing money owed of ordinary failures to lucid ecological reasons of traditional coastal procedures, from experiences of human interference and building at the shore to clear-eyed elucidation of public coverage and conservation pursuits, this e-book illustrates in wealthy element 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 shorelines, previous and current, contain discussions of typhoon Andrew's attack at the Gulf Coast, the 1962 northeaster that ravaged a thousand miles of the Atlantic shore, the beleaguered shores of recent Jersey and North Carolina's quickly vanishing Outer Banks, and the sand-starved coast of southern California. Dean presents 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 take pleasure in opposed to the Tide's painless direction in coastal techniques and new point of view at the seashore.

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Material that had consolidated into cliffs crumpled under the onslaught, throwing dirt and rock into the sea, where the constant grinding of the surf reduced it to ever finer grains of sand. Currents picked up this sand—as much as two hundred thousand cubic yards a year—and carried it west along the new coast. As sand was removed, the cliff-crumpling continued, creating new sand in its place. By the time Washington was siting the lighthouse, the action of the waves ARMOR 37 and currents had carried off enough Montauk sediment to form a string of barrier beaches along most of Long Island’s south shore.

It would probably not be around to guide the next team looking for the monuments. Even more than vegetation, the buildings had changed. There was nothing left of one house 20 TH E GR EAT B EAC H he had noted in 1979 except the remains of a concrete septic tank sticking out of the edge of the eroding bluff. The house itself had fallen away. Later in the day, he found another monument at the edge of what is now the driveway of another cottage. The concrete rose out of the ground at an angle (“someone evidently backed over the monument,” Leatherman observed), and its brass plaque had been knocked off.

We’re on a collision coast,” Inman told the Woods Hole group. ” By contrast, he said, the East Coast “is a low coast line, it’s a trailing edge coast and the effect of sea level rise is to let the barrier migrate inland and so you have something like, on the Outer Banks of North Carolina, average landward migration of the order of five to six feet per year. And that means that over a ten-year period you’re talking fifty to sixty feet. This is appreciable. “On the West coast we have an entirely different situation with half the rise.

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