Preserving the Natural Balance of Brevard’s Beaches

When our man-made inlet was opened, newly created water and wind patterns reversed the original southerly drift of sand along the Atlantic shoreline. This aggravated erosion of the beaches south of the jetties and build up of beaches to the north. Port Canaveral was the first deepwater port in the state to formulate a plan to minimize or reverse its effects on adjacent beaches. The Canaveral Harbor Inlet Management Plan includes pioneering strategies that are implemented through a partnership of the Canaveral Port Authority, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Jacksonville District), the State of Florida and Brevard County:
 
  • Nearshore disposal of beach-compatible sediment dredged from the harbor. Roughly one-third of this sand has turned to the active beach.
  • Sand-tightening and extension of the north and south jetties at the harbor entrance.
  • The Canaveral Harbor Federal Sand Bypass Project, which transfers sand from the shoreline north of the harbor entrance to areas of shoreline south of the entrance. After more than 15 years of monitoring, the project is performing beautifully.
 
The Port Authority participates in other ongoing initiatives that include making inlet improvements, refining dredging practices, renourishing beaches and re-planting native dune vegetation such as sea oats to combat local beach erosion from all causes. But perhaps our most crucial ongoing role is in successfully courting federal and state funding for major beach restoration efforts throughout our region.