Sand Mining

Beach Sand mining on the beach in Morocco View Sand Mining Gallery

The world’s beaches are being mined for sand for a variety of uses (aggregate in concrete, fill, beach renourishment). The practice is often very destructive and poorly managed (or unmanaged). This is a global phenomenon (Morocco, Caribbean Islands, India, South Africa and more). This theft of beach and dune sand is a direct cause of erosion along many shorelines. It is very damaging to the beach fauna and flora, ruinous to beach aesthetics, and frequently causes environmental damage to other coastal ecosystems associated with the beach such as wetlands.

Another major impact of beach sand mining is the loss of protection from storms surges associated with tropical cyclones and tsunamis. Some communities affected by the 2004 tsunami in the Indian Ocean had higher storm surges probably due to beach sand mining resulting in fatalities. Sometimes it is difficult to tell that a beach has been mined. Sand extraction becomes difficult to recognize as the beach readjusts to a new profile after a few storms. But historic accounts of beaches in the Caribbean often reveal that beaches have been narrowed considerably. Mining is particularly senseless in a time of rising sea level when sand is sorely needed as a storm energy buffer.


Surfing in / Sand Mining

Monterey Bay, California: Beach Sand Mining from a National Marine Sanctuary; By Gary Griggs

Fig2

The 30-mile long, continuous sandy shoreline around Monterey Bay is the most visited stretch of shoreline on the central coast. Yet, it holds the dubious distinction of being the only active beach sand mining operation along the entire United States shoreline. To make matters even worse, it all takes place along the shoreline of a protected National Marine Sanctuary. Something is seriously wrong with this picture.

No comments

Demand for Sand Takes Off Because Off Fracking

sand-bags
News, Sand Mining
Aug
26

Frackers are expected to use nearly 95 billion pounds of sand this year, up nearly 30% from 2013. There are growing restraints on sand supplies and oil companies’ insatiable appetite has generated renewed interest in second-tier deposits of lower-quality brown sand in places like Texas.

No comments

“El Expolio De La Arena”

el-expolio-arena-1

In this original version, investigative journalist Cristina Sáez, writing for leading spanish newspaper La Vanguardia, exposes how extensive, detrimental, silenced yet utterly pervasive “The pillaging of beach sand” has become.

No comments

9 Houses That Prove Your Dream Home Is Also A Green Home

thatch-huts

“Green building” is an effort to curb the environmental toll of inefficient homes, and it’s taking hold in the construction sector. Nine architects talk about their stunning projects that are not only sustainable, but beautiful too…

No comments

The Deadly Occupation Attracting Kenya’s Youth

sand-mining-kenya

Sand is becoming a necessary component in fuelling the construction boom that is driving the rapid pace of urbanisation and rapid economic growth patterns in Kenya. Many of Kenya’s poor youth are turning to sand mining as a quick way of earning money, despite the deadly risks due to poor sand harvesting methods.

No comments

Caofeidian, The Chinese Eco-City That Became a Ghost Town – In Pictures

caofeidian-tangshan-bohai-bay

“As precious as gold … That was how then-president Hu Jintao described Caofeidian during his visit in 2006. It was pledged to be ‘the world’s first fully realised eco-city’ – yet 10 years and almost $100bn later, only a few thousand inhabitants have moved to this land reclaimed from the sea …”

No comments

Lower Fish Haul Due To Sand Mining, Malaysia

malaysia-fishermen
News, Sand Mining
Jul
15

Hundreds of fishermen, in Selangor State, are facing huge financial losses after their monthly catch is slashed by half over the last three months allegedly because of sand mining near their fishing spot.

No comments

The Government Is Lying About Stradbroke Island Sand Mining

north-stradbroke
News, Sand Mining
Jul
15

The Newman Government has misled the media and the public over its amendments to North Stradbroke Island sand mining legislation.

1 comment

Lawlessness in UP: Sand Mafias Thrive Without Shroud Of Fear

sand-mining-river-banks

The practice of illegal mining is common in the entire state of Uttar Pradesh, India, along the riverbeds as there is constant demand for sand. The builders in the region are always on the lookout for cheap sand which comes from a mafia that illegally mines the riverbed.

No comments

Sand Mining

You can make a difference and help save our beaches

Learn simple things that you can do to help protect beaches starting with simply educating others about the beach thereby helping us celebrate the beauty of the world’s beaches.


Join our campaign!

Sign the petition to end global sand mining.


  • Sand Mining Resources


  • Recent / Sand Mining

    Monterey Bay, California: Beach Sand Mining from a National Marine Sanctuary; By Gary Griggs

    Fig2

    September 1st, 2014

    The 30-mile long, continuous sandy shoreline around Monterey Bay is the most visited stretch of shoreline on the central coast. Yet, it holds the dubious distinction of being the only active beach sand mining operation along the entire United States shoreline. To make matters even worse, it all takes place along the shoreline of a protected National Marine Sanctuary. Something is seriously wrong with this picture.

    Read More

    Demand for Sand Takes Off Because Off Fracking

    sand-bags

    August 26th, 2014

    Frackers are expected to use nearly 95 billion pounds of sand this year, up nearly 30% from 2013. There are growing restraints on sand supplies and oil companies’ insatiable appetite has generated renewed interest in second-tier deposits of lower-quality brown sand in places like Texas.

    Read More

    “El Expolio De La Arena”

    el-expolio-arena-1

    August 16th, 2014

    In this original version, investigative journalist Cristina Sáez, writing for leading spanish newspaper La Vanguardia, exposes how extensive, detrimental, silenced yet utterly pervasive “The pillaging of beach sand” has become.

    Read More

    9 Houses That Prove Your Dream Home Is Also A Green Home

    thatch-huts

    August 13th, 2014

    “Green building” is an effort to curb the environmental toll of inefficient homes, and it’s taking hold in the construction sector. Nine architects talk about their stunning projects that are not only sustainable, but beautiful too…

    Read More

    The Deadly Occupation Attracting Kenya’s Youth

    sand-mining-kenya

    August 6th, 2014

    Sand is becoming a necessary component in fuelling the construction boom that is driving the rapid pace of urbanisation and rapid economic growth patterns in Kenya. Many of Kenya’s poor youth are turning to sand mining as a quick way of earning money, despite the deadly risks due to poor sand harvesting methods.

    Read More

    Caofeidian, The Chinese Eco-City That Became a Ghost Town – In Pictures

    caofeidian-tangshan-bohai-bay

    July 28th, 2014

    “As precious as gold … That was how then-president Hu Jintao described Caofeidian during his visit in 2006. It was pledged to be ‘the world’s first fully realised eco-city’ – yet 10 years and almost $100bn later, only a few thousand inhabitants have moved to this land reclaimed from the sea …”

    Read More

    Lower Fish Haul Due To Sand Mining, Malaysia

    malaysia-fishermen

    July 15th, 2014

    Hundreds of fishermen, in Selangor State, are facing huge financial losses after their monthly catch is slashed by half over the last three months allegedly because of sand mining near their fishing spot.

    Read More

    The Government Is Lying About Stradbroke Island Sand Mining

    north-stradbroke

    July 15th, 2014

    The Newman Government has misled the media and the public over its amendments to North Stradbroke Island sand mining legislation.

    Read More

    Lawlessness in UP: Sand Mafias Thrive Without Shroud Of Fear

    sand-mining-river-banks

    July 5th, 2014

    The practice of illegal mining is common in the entire state of Uttar Pradesh, India, along the riverbeds as there is constant demand for sand. The builders in the region are always on the lookout for cheap sand which comes from a mafia that illegally mines the riverbed.

    Read More

    Feds Decide Against Dredged Sand On NC island

    horse-dune-nc

    July 1st, 2014

    The National Park Service has backed off its proposal to use dredged sand to fight erosion on North Carolina’s Shackleford Banks, pleasing both environmentalists, who want to maintain the barrier island’s pristine condition, and local beach town officials, who want the sand for their shores.

    Read More