U.S Sen. Tom Carper (D-Del.) joined representatives from the Army Corps of Engineers, Delaware Department ofNaturalResources andEnvironmentalControl’ and local representatives to announce that a beach replenishment project in Bethany Beach, South Bethany, and Fenwick Island will begin this fall.
In January 2016, winter storm Jonas resulted in damage tothe protective dunes in Delaware, but most dramatically in Bethany and South Bethany. This damageadded to the destructionand beach loss sustained with Hurricane Joaquin in fall 2015 and subsequent nor’easters.
The project will involve dredging sand from approved offshore areas. The sand is pumped through a series of pipes onto the beaches and then graded into a dune and berm template designed to reduce potential damage.
Total cost, according to a story from Delaware Public Media, is estimated at between $15 million and $22 million.
“What we’ve learned from past storms is that beach replenishment works if we are proactive in protecting our coastline. Our dunes and beaches have stood up to the nastiest storms and protected our homes, businesses, schools and infrastructure,” said Carper, ranking member of the Environment and Public Works Committee. “Some people may question why we continue to replenish our beaches. Our 21 miles of oceanfront are more than just sand and surf – theygenerate more than $6.9 billion in coastal tourism annually, employing almost 60,000 people. This is more than 10 percent of Delaware’s workforce. It’s important to work that protects not only our community but our economy as well.”
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) Philadelphia District received construction funding to move forward with the contracting process to repair the Bethany/South Bethany and Fenwick Island Coastal Storm Damage Reduction projects.
This project is 100 percent federally funded through the Flood Control and Coastal Emergencies program.