"The Start Of The 'Sand Wars'"

"Sand is becoming New England coastal dwellers’ most coveted and controversial commodity as they try to fortify beaches against rising seas and severe erosion caused by violent storms."

"From Westerly, Rhode Island to Eliot, Maine, debates over who gets sand, who pays for it and where it comes from are fast becoming some of the region’s most contentious oceanfront issues. In many cases, taxpayers are being asked to foot some of the bill for beach-rebuilding projects.

'It’s called the sand wars,' said S. Jeffress Williams, a coastal geologist and scientist emeritus with the United States Geological Survey in Woods Hole and the University of Hawaii. The disputes, happening across the coastal U.S., 'are only going to get more intense,' he said.

Among the seaside squabbles, some residents in Salisbury want $300,000 in state taxpayer dollars for sand to help protect private homes from the ocean’s fury."

Beth Daley reports for the New England Center for Investigative Reporting December 15, 2013.

Source: NECIR, 12/16/2013