NewsProtecting Paradise


Beach erosion happening up and down coastline

'Right now what we got going on here is really bad'
Posted at 10:56 PM, Sep 22, 2020
and last updated 2020-09-22 23:37:59-04

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — Charles Moxey's family played in the ocean as he watched on in delight.

"Here she comes, here she comes," he said.

What he doesn't like is all the beach erosion.

"Right now what we got going on here is really bad," he said. "Usually, the sand is not that as far gone down. It's usually up higher and you can go out a little further, but right now it's not good."

Andy Studt is with Palm Beach County Environmental Resources Management. He said with the current swell from northeast Bermuda, Palm Beach County beaches have been hit with significant wave impact and erosion countywide.

"We've got a number of identified areas within the county that are designated as critically eroded, 33 out of our 47-mile Atlantic coastline, and a lot of those areas are under active management with either beach or dune projects," he said.

Studt said it's hard work to replace what is lost, protect coastal property and maintain the habitat. It's expensive work, but the county has cost-sharing partners from cities along the coast to the federal government.

"We use tourist development taxes, so bed taxes and hotel stays to try to fund our program," Studt said.

It is revenue that's taken a hit in a difficult 2020. However, Studt said, most projects are budgeted for years in advance.

Moxey said something has to be done.

"It's bad," he said.