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.

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Land reclamation project starts in Monaco

Work has begun on the maritime infrastructure that will constitute the first phase of the six-hectare land reclamation project. The total value of the maritime infrastructure works is approximately €1 billion.

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Sand War in Bay of Lannion, Brittany, France

News, Sand Mining
Sep
12

Following yesterday’s rally against Lannion’s Bay ongoing shell sand extraction, activists from the environmental group “Peuple Des Dunes” and local officials, are to meet with the french Environment Minister Segolene Royal, to request the suspension of the controversial dredging concession granted to CAN Industry, whose current practices have been deemed questionable.

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Namibia: Environment Ministry to Punish Illegal Sand Miners

News, Sand Mining
Sep
10

The environment ministry says it will have no mercy with people who are caught mining sand, and those who are found guilty of the offence face 25 years imprisonment or a fine of N$500,000, or both.

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Looking to Holland to find more sand for Galveston Island, Texas

For years, sand has been returned to eroded beaches and dunes on Galveston Island by bulldozers and backhoes at a cost of millions of dollars. Now, a new idea: let Mother Nature do the work.

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Company makes new iron sand mining attempt

A plan to mine iron sands off the South Taranaki coast is back on the table.

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Sand scarcity hits Mumbai’s first artificial beach project

The plan for Mumbai’s first artificial beach off Marine Drive faces a challenge due to huge shortage of sand.

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Cemex sand mine decision anticipated before years’ end; California

News, Sand Mining
Aug
19

For the Cemex sand mine in Marina, and for those calling for it to be shut down, the hourglass may almost be out of sand.

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Why are beaches disappearing in Morocco?

Desirable coastal areas are being stripped of their beachfronts by the construction need for sand…

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Illegal sand mining is a multi-million Crore scam: Study

An NGO released a 300-page document and video clippings on illegal sand mining in coastal Karnataka (Southwest India) and that’s a scam worth more than Rs 850 crore per annum. (1 Crore Rupees = 10 Million Rupees).

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Sand Mining

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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.


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  • Recent / Sand Mining

    Maha Oya Sand Mining To Affect Millions, Sri Lanka

    July 10th, 2016

    Excessive sand mining activities in the Maha Oya river had caused reduction of sand supply to the coastline, breaking the natural sand equilibrium of the beaches, a study reveals. The coastal stretch from Negombo to Chilaw has been identified as the most eroded coastline in Sri Lanka, of which between 80 and 85 per cent of the degradation is attributed to exacerbated sand mining in the Maha Oya.

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    Bill Marks Shoals as Sources for Beach Sand, NC

    June 27th, 2016

    Senate leaders hit the brakes last week on a fast-moving set of amendments to state environmental laws with several coastal-related provisions, including one that would for the first time target North Carolina’s three great capes as a sources of sand for beach re-nourishment.

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    Montserrat residents and former premier outraged at public beach sand mining

    June 10th, 2016

    Montserrat residents are outraged and seeking answers as to why vast amounts of sand are being removed from Foxes Bay Beach in the south of the island. New photos taken on the beach show the sand being collected and put into trucks belonging to a local mining company.

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    Liberia: Sand Mining Threatens Coastal Town

    June 5th, 2016

    Harper, a town at West Africa’s most southern location, on Cape Palmas, is seriously under threat of being swallowed by violent waves from the Atlantic Ocean. The threat of erosion is blamed on persistent local sand mining.

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    Lawyer speaks out on beach sand mining, Montserrat

    June 2nd, 2016

    Substantial quantity of sand is currently being removed from the southern end of Carrs Bay Beach, and area that is both environmentally and ecologically sensitive.

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    North Stradbroke Island sand mining to end by 2019

    kangourous-australie

    June 1st, 2016

    Sand mining will come to an end on North Stradbroke Island by 2019, reversing a decision by the former Newman administration to extend Sibelco’s lease to 2035.

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    Biologist urges action on illegal sand mining, Antigua

    May 24th, 2016

    A local marine biologist is urging the authorities to take a firmer stance on the crime of sand mining at beaches across the Antigua & Barbuda.

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    Uganda: How Sand Mining Is Destroying Lake Victoria Catchment

    May 20th, 2016

    The expansive Lwera wetland is a major water catchment area that connects several rivers and wetlands in many districts and drains directly into Lake Victoria. For years on, the locals have lived in peace with the surroundings. However, over the past couple of months, sharp noises from sand dredgers are heard. Sand mining companies are breaching rules and are destroying the wetland.

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    Activist’s action against illegal sand mining near Kihim beach, India

    May 20th, 2016

    Activist Sumaira Abdulali, who has been threatened and attacked several times for raising the issue of sand mining, continues to raise awareness on the subject, to the local authorities.

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    Crimeans told to stop stealing sand from beaches

    May 18th, 2016

    Officials in Crimea are warning people to stop stealing sand from tourist beaches, or else face a prison sentence. The peninsula’s beaches are being targeted by people who remove the sand for use as free building material, and at more remote beaches it’s being taken away by the lorry-load.

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