The Coastal Zone: Battleground and Classroom

by Virginia Fairweather, Editor; ASCE News, New York, N.Y.,

Serial Information: Civil Engineering—ASCE, 1978, Vol. 48, Issue 2, Pg. 66-71

Document Type: Feature article

Errata: (See full record)


The coastal zone of the nation is becoming the battleground for opposing energy and environmental interests. The Coastal Zone Management Law of 1972 asked that each state prepare a coastal management plan with which federal agencies could comply. Progress and problems are described, including a major lawsuit over interpretation of the national interest in energy resource exploration of the outer continental shelf in relation to the provisions of the law. The issue of federal/state power is one of the problems as is state/local municipality jurisdiction. Others include dredging, harbor maintenance, local zoning, the effect of man-made structures on the coastline, recreational needs, public access to the shore, erosion, protection of wetlands. A major mapping effort is part of the nationwide program and new techniques are discussed. Focus is on four states: California, New Jersey, Florida and Washington.

Subject Headings: Coastal management | Coastal environment | Federal government | Wetlands (coastal) | Aging (material) | Litigation | Local government | Jurisdiction | United States | California | New Jersey | Florida | Washington

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