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To feed or not to feed, that is often the question
Charlier, R.H.; Decroo, D.; De Meyer, C.P.; Lahousse, B. (1998). To feed or not to feed, that is often the question. Int. J. Environ. Stud. 55(1-2): 1-23.
In: International Journal of Environmental Studies. Gordon and Breach Science Publishers: New York; Paris; London. ISSN 0020-7233, more
Peer reviewed article  

Available in Authors 
    VLIZ: Open Repository 233887 [ OMA ]

Author keywords
    Coastal protection; sediment transport; beach nourishment; perched beach

Authors  Top 
  • Charlier, R.H., more
  • Decroo, D.
  • De Meyer, C.P., more
  • Lahousse, B.

    Restoring beaches and stabilizing coastlines by the “soft method”, viz. replacing eroded sand by artificial nourishment, is an approach that has now been practiced in several locations around the world for some time. It is often claimed as a “first” by California and by New York (Coney Island 1922). Half a decade ago the largest such operation could be claimed by Belgium (Knokke-Heist 1989). Some of these programs continue today as a result of monitoring and maintenance.Successful or not, the technique remains subject to strong critique and is labeled by some as the building of sand castles awaiting to be wiped out by the next storm. In the US there are accusations of subsidizing shorefront property owners. This is not a valid argument in most countries because the State owns the shorefront.Recently the Commission of Engineering and Technical Systems of the (US) National Research Council recognized artificial nourishment as a viable protection and restoration method. It is, of course, not equally valid for all sites. Furthermore profile nourishment, rather than beach reconstruction has been advocated for some time. The recent experiences in Belgium (Westhoek, Ostend, De Haan), where storms of exceptional fury lashed at “restored” beaches, seem to buttress the confidence manifested in the approach. This paper reports on the most recent observations along that sector of the North Sea coast.

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