Surfrider's San Diego chapter sought to stop Solana sea cliffs from being filled with untested "erodible" concrete.
The second item (see first item here) on the January 2016 Coastal Commission agenda that brought Surfrider’s San Diego chapter to the public meeting regarded a proposed installation of 100 feet of “erodible” concrete in front of the Solana Beach Tennis Club (SBTC). Surfrider has been advocating against erodible concrete (until when/if it is proven to work) for years. The debate over erodible concrete started with the Bannasch project (also in Solana Beach) which was eventually approved in June of 2014, only after very specific conditions were added. However, that project has not been installed yet because the applicant refuses to comply with those conditions.
The SBTC application to fill seacaves with erodible concrete was the second project to come through, following Bannasch. The chapter’s stance is that the material should be proven to erode as it is expected to prior to installation. Calling it “erodible” does not make it erodible, and the chapter’s successful litigation on the subject in 2003 supported that there is not enough information yet to prove that it will be “erodible.” As Commission staff has been trying to find a path forward, they suggested two additional conditions (in addition to those applied to the Bannasch project), but the applicant did not want to comply with those either. At the end of the day, in what began as a 8-3 vote, but later became a 9-2 vote, the Commission wisely recognized that the applicant must prove that the material will erode prior to installation and that if the applicant is allowed to install any of this material and it does not perform as expected, it must be removed. The chapter is thrilled that the Commissioners decided to hold the applicants accountable and protected precious coastal resources.
San Diego Reader: “De Facto Seawall Denied”
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