The Health, Beauty and Ecosystem of Our Beaches is Under Threat.
Driving on the beach
The driving cause for most of these problems is overdevelopment and poor coastal management. If no buildings crowded the shoreline, there would be no shoreline armoring, beach nourishment, threats to the beach fauna and flora or shoreline erosion problems.
The work of the Santa Aguila Charitable Trust will emphasize the impacts of sand mining and shoreline armoring: the first because the effects of sand mining have been largely ignored on a global scale and the latter due to its overwhelming negative impacts on the world’s beaches.
- Coastal Care Introduction: The world’s beaches are in dire need of attention.
- Sea Level Rise: There is no debate: sea level rise is happening right now and threatens all of our beaches.
- Poor Coastal Development: Even a single building negatively impacts a beach, so it is hard to imagine what hundreds of them might do.
- Shoreline Armoring: Sea walls and constructed rock shorelines are not beautiful vacation destinations and can eventually destroy the natural beach.
- Sand Mining: Right now, sand is being taken off beaches all over the world destroying beach habitat, accelerating erosion, and reducing protection from storms.
- Pollution: Pollution is hazardous to animals and plants, takes many forms, and is an increasing global problem.
- Mangrove & Coral Destruction: Development and beach construction projects destroy critical habitat for beach plants and animals everyday.
The Beach Ecosystem is Made Up of Living and Non-Living Parts.
Heavy mineral accumulations
Plants and animals and sand and water influence each other, often amidst breathtaking scenery. Greater than the sum of its parts, beaches sustain major portions of global biodiversity. With over half the world’s population living within 50 km of the coast, human influence on that biodiversity is inevitable, making the study of beaches even more important.
- Beach Basics: Learn how a beach is defined, why beaches are different colors, and the parts of a beach.
- Exploring the Sand: Sand is a major part of most beaches. Learn some details about sand that you might not know.
- Waves: What causes waves to break, different types of waves, and rogue waves.
- Tides: Learn about tides, storm surges, and sea level rise.
- Sand Dunes: Sand dune formation, types of dunes, and where they exist.
- Flora and Fauna: The beach is home to scores of amazing plants and animals. Learn just a few of these and make your next visit to the beach a treat.
- Seashells: Seashells are an important part of biological and geological beach processes as well as an important part of human culture.
- Safety: Follow these safety tips to reduce risk of danger at the beach.
You Can Make a Difference and Help Save Our Beaches
Low tide seawall marsh, Pivers Island
Learn simple things that you can do to help protect beaches starting with simply educating others about the beach thereby helping us celbrate the beauty of the world’s beaches.
- Advocacy: Learn what the experts are saying on major beach issues. Follow these simple tips to make sure your impact is reduced and others can enjoy the beach too.
- Petition on Sand Mining: Sign our petition to end global beach sand mining.
- Petition on Hardened Beach Structures: Sign our petition supporting the ban on hardened beach structures in North Carolina.
- Donate: Support our mission.
How do you celebrate the beach? Let us know!
Celebrating the beach is key! Compete in our drawing contest, write a poem, share a photograph, tell a story or play a game. The beach holds something for everyone!
Surfing in / Celebrate
We live in a sea of sound, but can we capture the essence of the ocean’s sounds in a seashell?
The brilliant sands of Jervis Bay owe their color (or lack of it) to the relentless action of water from old rivers, and rising and falling seas over thousands of years. According to the Guinness Book of Records, the sands around Jervis Bay are the whitest in the world. These sands are also finer than typical ocean beach sand.
In a stunning new book of photographs, aerial photographer Yann Arthus-Bertrand, founder of the Good Planet Foundation, and underwater snapper Brian Skerry have teamed up to observe our relationship with the sea. To mark Earth Day, take a dip…
A mention of the United Arab Emirates coast might bring to mind the artificial islands near the city of Dubai. But to the southwest, the UAE coast is dotted with a complex mixture of natural features: mangroves, salt domes, salt flats, and coral reefs.
A continuation of the landmark scientific reference series from the Harte Research Institute for Gulf of Mexico Studies, Gulf of Mexico Origin, Waters, and Biota, Volume 3, Geology provides the most up-to-date, systematic, cohesive, and comprehensive description of the geology of the Gulf of Mexico Basin. Edited by Noreen A. Buster and Charles W. Holmes.
Adopting a long perspective that interprets sea level changes both underway and expected in the near future, Vivien Gornitz, in her new book Rising Seas: Past, Present, Future, completes a highly relevant and necessary study of an unprecedented age in Earth’s history.
Horned ghost crabs change their appearance from day to night for camouflage, a study has revealed. They can even match the colours of particular grains of sand found on the beach where they occur.