Guest Column

Army Corps plan makes sense


I had hoped that no one would take issue with my Feb. 14-20 column (“City must approve Army Corps plan”), because I used the exact same information that appeared in an article in a September 2005 issue of the Herald, stating that surfers were the main influence leading up to the Long Beach City Council’s unanimous vote in 2006 to reject a proposed Army Corps of Engineers storm reduction plan for Long Beach.

It is now four months after Hurricane Sandy struck, and the City Council has not approved a resolution for the Army Corps to proceed with its 2006 plan to protect the oceanfront.

I can’t blame the council for not doing so — after all, they were trying to save the city after Hurricane Sandy, and their efforts were magnificent! But they should have approved the resolution by now. It is now March, and each delay sets in place a series of events that even if and when they eventually approve the resolution, things will probably happen to prevent sand being placed upon our beach for an unexpected longer period of time.

Surfer Jose A. Rodriguez’s letter to the Herald criticized my comments, saying that my statements were not factual, while Long Beach Surfer’s Association President Billy Kupferman wrote a column defending the surfers and criticizing my anger — though he admirably wrote that we should all come together and move forward. I agree that we must move forward together, but only based on science backed by evidence.

In my last column, I wrote that there would have been zero ocean damage if the council had approved the Army Corps plan in 2006. Rodriguez wrote, “This opinion is profoundly devoid of any factual nature, and completely ignores the effects of the surge alone on the bayside. I would ask him to produce evidence where the Army Corps efforts on beach replenishment mitigated the effects of Sandy: From Sea Bright to Mantoloking N.J., which include the most heavily engineered beaches, even sea walls were a miserable failure.”

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