Richard O. Eaton


From the standpoint of geological processes, a sandy beach is an interim phase in the ultimate development of a coastline, principally because a sandy beach can survive only if it receives nourishment at the rate of depletion. Depending upon its stage of maturity, a particular coastal segment may be advancing, retreating or in a state of approximate equilibrium. Its precise status in any phase is dependent upon material balance, that is, the rate at which sediments are delivered to the littoral zone compared with the rate at which they are removed therefrom. The ultimate stage of development may be described as a state in which the littoral forces are incapable of transporting materials which form the littoral berm, and erosive forces acting upon the land mass are incapable of delivering sediments to or from the coastal shores.


sediment transport, economic impact, barriers, nourishment

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