WASHINGTON The Trump administration changed a 25-year-old policy to make it easier for coastal communities to take sand from protected ecosystems to improve their beaches.
The shift makes it cheaper for some of the wealthiest communities in the country to replenish their beachfronts, which are increasingly under threat from more frequent and intense storms, rising seas and other effects of climate change. Critics say that comes at the expense of vulnerable coastal ecosystems.
Undeveloped coastal islands and beaches will now be opened up to sand mining that will imperil birds and other wildlife, destroy important habitat and reduce the protections these places provide against impacts of storms and erosion, said Karen Hyun, vice president for coastal conservation at the National Audubon Society, in a statement.
In 1982, Congress established the Coastal Barrier Resources System, which protects 1.4 million acres of land around the country from development. The Interior Department has long said that the law prohibited using federal money to remove sand from those zones to replenish beaches elsewhere.
In a letter this week to Jeff Van Drew, a New Jersey congressman, Interior Secretary David Bernhardt said he had reversed that position. Last month, Representative Van Drew met with the secretary to request the change.
This flawed interpretation of the law has prevented a number of coastal storm damage reduction projects, Secretary Bernhardt wrote this week to Representative Van Drew, who represents communities in Southern New Jersey that stand to benefit from the new policy.
The Trump Administration is committed to protecting our coastlines and utilizing our available resources to restore, enhance or stabilize our beaches consistent with the law Congress wrote, Secretary Bernhardt said in a statement released by Representative Van Drews office this week.
Want climate news in your inbox? Sign up here for Climate Fwd:, our email newsletter.
Late last month, Representative Van Drew was one of two Democrats to vote against opening an impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump.
A spokeswoman for the Interior Department, Melissa Brown, said in a statement that There is absolutely no connection whatsoever between the vote and the letter from Mr. Bernhardt.
The communications director for Representative Van Drew, Mackenzie Lucas, wrote in an email, These things have nothing to do with one another. Noting that Representative Van Drew has long opposed impeachment, the spokesperson wrote, it is absurd to think that the Congressman would trade his vote for some sand.
In his news release this week, Representative Van Drew said Mr. Bernhardts decision proves that we can still come together in a bipartisan fashion and seek common-sense solutions to improve the lives of Americans.
Beyond the threat posed to protected coastal zones, critics said the policy shift would also encourage more property development in beach towns at risk of flooding, or even becoming uninhabitable in the long term, because of climate change.
They say the cost of that development will fall on taxpayers, who fund not just the beach renourishment projects but also the programs required to support those communities, such as federal flood insurance and disaster recovery programs. In many cases, beach nourishment is subsidizing the most vulnerable and exposed property in the United States, said Robert S. Young, director of the Program for the Study of Developed Shorelines at Western Carolina University.
For more news on climate and the environment, follow @NYTClimate on Twitter.
Here is the original post:
- Drag Race alum Adore Delano talks Ex on the Beach season 4: 'We have every spectrum of sexuality' - Entertainment Weekly News - November 25th, 2019
- Five Must-Try Water Activities For Your Next Beach Vacation - Forbes - November 25th, 2019
- Beach Hazards Statement issued for beaches due to red tide - Fox 4 - November 25th, 2019
- President Trump to arrive in Palm Beach County on Tuesday - WPTV.com - November 25th, 2019
- Man, 20, killed in fiery Newport Beach crash is identified as Stanton resident - Los Angeles Times - November 25th, 2019
- South Bay History: The beach cities greenbelt, where joggers took over from railroad trains - The Daily Breeze - November 25th, 2019
- A swell century: surfing Sydney's beaches from 1915 to 2019 in pictures - The Guardian - November 25th, 2019
- Huntington Beach resident identified as one of two women killed in Westminster crash - Los Angeles Times - November 25th, 2019
- IRCSO: Vero Beach man arrested, accused of trafficking and carrying opioids - TCPalm - November 25th, 2019
- Stuart, Port St. Lucie and Vero Beach are Purple Heart cities, but what does that mean? - TCPalm - November 25th, 2019
- Wings made of conch shells on Jersey Shore beach are a heaven-sent photo op - NJ.com - November 25th, 2019
- Long Beach Man Killed in Citys 3rd Shooting in Just Over 24 Hours - KTLA Los Angeles - November 25th, 2019
- Hoops revival continues: Tulane men win 2 of 3 in Myrtle Beach, improve to 5-1 - NOLA.com - November 25th, 2019
- A Komodo dragon hit the beach wearing a turtle as a hat, and there's video evidence - INSIDER - November 25th, 2019
- IN PICTURES: Central Long Beach residents treated to Thanksgiving turkeys, meals - Long Beach Post - November 25th, 2019
- Teens Confess to Vandalizing Benches at Groton Beaches: Police - NBC Connecticut - November 25th, 2019
- Jax Beach Pier closed: Work begins on 2-year project - ActionNewsJax.com - November 25th, 2019
- Mexican Architect's Mansion on Miami Beach's Star Island Hits Market for $30 Million | Daily Business Review - Law.com - November 25th, 2019
- Vero Beach woman dies after crash; Indian River Boulevard to close for investigation - TCPalm - November 25th, 2019
- The Beach Boys top this weekend's nightlife in the Coachella Valley - Desert Sun - November 25th, 2019
- Sea of devotees throng beaches - The Hindu - November 12th, 2019
- Bricks of 'very pure' cocaine keep washing up on French beaches - New York Post - November 12th, 2019
- Needles and other medical supplies just washed up on a California beach - CNN - November 12th, 2019
- South Bay, Long Beach areas honor nations veterans with ceremonies solemn and celebratory alike - The Daily Breeze - November 12th, 2019
- Technically, This Is the Most Perfect Stretch of Beach In the World - Thrillist - November 12th, 2019
- For the 2nd day in a row, some Hawaii beaches are closed because of shark sightings - Q13 News Seattle - November 12th, 2019
- Thousands of Glorious 'Ice Eggs' Wash Up on Finnish Beach - Livescience.com - November 12th, 2019
- Lee and Collier County upgrading tools to keep SWFL beaches clean - Wink News - November 12th, 2019
- Miami Beach: One of The Hottest Destinations In the World Welcomes Art Basel 2019 - PRNewswire - November 12th, 2019
- Suspect and victim in deadly shooting ID'd - WPTV.com - November 12th, 2019
- First responders fed up with their HOA community in Royal Palm Beach - wflx - November 12th, 2019
- IVGID to discuss golf carts, tennis center, bocce ball, beach house and summer wrap up - Tahoe Daily Tribune - November 12th, 2019
- Ice eggs: Thousands of rare balls of ice cover beach in Finland - CBS News - November 12th, 2019
- Jersey Shore beach fill project will begin after fight with feds over sand - NJ.com - November 12th, 2019
- 150kg of diamond cocaine washes up on French beaches, locals urged against treasure hunting - RT - November 12th, 2019
- Feature: Long Beach Poly's James Chubba Maae In The Middle Of It All - The562.org - November 12th, 2019
- Several Birds Found Dead On Huntington Beach Test Positive For Very Unexpected Type Of Botulism - CBS Los Angeles - November 12th, 2019
- Forward Progress Of Marin County Coast Wildfire Stopped - CBS San Francisco - October 25th, 2019
- Your favorite beaches around the world could disappear because of the climate crisis, development - CNN - October 25th, 2019
- More sand dunes, sea oats coming to Harrison County beaches - WLOX - October 25th, 2019
- A rare Caribbean island where beaches aren't the draw - CNN - October 25th, 2019
- In Southern Shores election, traffic and beaches and town manager dominate - The Outer Banks Voice - October 25th, 2019
- Reunion Special: Who's Still Together From Ex On The Beach Season 3? - MTV.com - October 25th, 2019
- Twin Harbors and Long Beach approved for clam dig that starts this weekend | KXRO News Radio - KXRO Newsradio - October 25th, 2019
- 'We're doing everything we can:' Humpback whale still beached in Samoa Thursday - KRCRTV.COM - October 25th, 2019
- MTV Announces New Dating Show, Ex on the Beach: Peak of Love with Your Favorite Reality Stars - PEOPLE.com - October 25th, 2019
- Rules banning dogs from cemeteries, beaches and playgrounds published by council - Isle of Wight County Press - October 25th, 2019
- Second suspect arrested in Huntington Beach shooting that left man in critical condition - Los Angeles Times - October 25th, 2019
- Wonsan's Beach Resort on Pace for Completion by Spring 2020 - 38 North - October 25th, 2019
- Authorities identify 2 men found dead inside Long Beach bar; victim had worked there to help support his mother - Long Beach Press Telegram - October 25th, 2019
- 165,000 tons of sand on the move to replenish Naples beaches - Wink News - October 25th, 2019
- Ex-St. John Bosco High football star who robbed Long Beach girlfriends bank in Torrance gets probation - Long Beach Press Telegram - October 25th, 2019
- Park Point residents are worried about their beach - KBJR 6 - October 25th, 2019
- U.S. offered to build North Korean beach resort in recent nuclear talks - MarketWatch - October 25th, 2019
- 2ND & PCH is open for business and Long Beachs southeastern gateway is officially transformed - Long Beach Press Telegram - October 25th, 2019
- Best Beach on Every Island in the Caribbean - Fodor's Travel - October 12th, 2019
- These SC houses are falling into the ocean as beaches erode. Who should remove them? - Charleston Post Courier - October 12th, 2019
- Photos: On eve of Long Beach Marathon, big race gets miniaturized for kids at Aquarium of the Pacific - Long Beach Press Telegram - October 12th, 2019
- Vero Beach outlasts Treasure Coast to clinch district title in overtime thriller - TCPalm - October 12th, 2019
- Unexpected Brit beach becomes only one in UK to make it into international top six - Mirror Online - October 12th, 2019
- Mexico Beach business community wiped out by Michael - The Albany Herald - October 12th, 2019
- Lawmakers to call for disciplinary action against judge - WPTV.com - October 12th, 2019
- Jack Black helps Redondo Beach family who lost daughter host event to thank Torrances Providence Trinity Kids Care Hospice - The Daily Breeze - October 12th, 2019
- Peace Doves mural created in honor of victims of the Virginia Beach mass shooting - WAVY.com - October 12th, 2019
- Beaches Resorts - Family Friendly Caribbean All-Inclusives ... - June 4th, 2019
- Beaches : NYC Parks - June 4th, 2019
- Beaches (1988) - IMDb - June 4th, 2019
- Best Beaches in the United States - TripAdvisor - June 4th, 2019
- atheism | Definition, Philosophy, & Comparison to ... - May 28th, 2019
- Atheism | CARM.org - May 28th, 2019
- Atheism - Simple English Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia - May 28th, 2019
- atheism r/atheism - reddit: the front page of the internet - May 28th, 2019
- Ripple Price Forecast: XRP vs SWIFT, SEC Updates, and More - May 25th, 2019
- Cryptocurrency News: Looking Past the Bithumb Crypto Hack - May 25th, 2019
- Cryptocurrency News: This Week on Bitfinex, Tether, Coinbase, & More - May 25th, 2019
- Cryptocurrency News: XRP Validators, Malta, and Practical Tokens - May 25th, 2019
- Cryptocurrency News: Bitcoin ETFs, Andreessen Horowitz, and Contradictions in Crypto - May 25th, 2019
- Cryptocurrency News: What You Need to Know This Week - May 25th, 2019
- Cryptocurrency News: New Exchanges Could Boost Crypto Liquidity - May 25th, 2019
- Cryptocurrency News: Bitcoin ETF Rejection, AMD Microchip Sales, and Hedge Funds - May 25th, 2019