1. Inform
  2. Educate
  3. Protect
  4. Celebrate


The Health, Beauty and Ecosystem of Our Beaches is Under Threat.

Beach Driving

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!

  • Art Contest: Send us your art and it may end up on this site.
  • Games: Mazes, puzzles, crosswords, coloring activities, and more.
  • Resources: Our growing list of all things coastal.
  • Beach Poetry: Drawing the line in the sand.

Surfing in / Features

PSDS: East Coast and Earl Hurricane Impacts


A team from the WCU Program for the Study of Developed Shorelines (PSDS) headed to the East Coast to investigate and document the impacts of Hurricane Earl along North Carolina’s Outer Banks.

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Explosion on another Gulf of Mexico oil platform

The BP disaster was supposed to be the wake up call, but we hit the snooze button. Today the alarm went off again. How many times are we going to gamble with lives, economies and ecosystems?

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Island evacuations start as Hurricane Earl nears East Coast


Storms following a path like Earl’s, running roughly parallel to the coast, could put millions of people in the most densely populated part of the country in harm’s way. They can also create a brief, rare season of world-class surfing on the northern Atlantic.

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California Lawmakers Reject Plastic Shopping Bag Ban

News, Pollution

The measure offered California an opportunity to emerge at the forefront of a global trend, however, lawmakers have rejected a bill seeking to ban plastic shopping bags.

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Forsol, Hammerfest, Norway; By Andrew Cooper

Forsol Beach

Near the fishing village of Forsol is a small beach that is only accessible by a foot track over a high rocky hill that bears very fresh scars of the last glaciation.

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Algae Blankets China Beaches

News, Pollution

The algae bloom, or green tide, covered more than 170 square miles (440 square kilometers) of coasts south of Qingdao.

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Health testing way down at California beaches

News, Pollution

Health testing of California’s beaches has slumped to its lowest level since ocean monitoring became law more than a decade ago.

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Gulf beaches deemed safe for sea turtle hatchlings

This summer, more than 25,000 sea-turtle eggs were relocated from gulf beaches to a Kennedy Space Center facility to protect the newly hatched turtles from polluted sand and waters.

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Rip Currents Continue to Worsen Along US East Coast


Rip currents are the greatest hazards on most beaches.

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Coastal Care junior
The World's Beaches
Sand Mining
One Percent