Coastal Preservation, Legal
January 25 2017

Surfrider Marches to Save Monterey Bay Sand

by Staley Prom

As you may have heard, the Cemex company is taking tons – literally hundreds of tons – of sand off the beaches in central California.  

And, as no surprise, as a consequence, the Monterey Bay beaches are eroding faster than any other coastal area along California’s shores.  

In fact, after persistent urging by the Surfrider Foundation, last March the California Coastal Commission acknowledged Cemex’s egregious operation and issued a Notice of Intent to commence Cease and Desist Proceedings to shut down operations.

Ten months later, however, and Cemex still hasn’t officially responded to the notice, which initially required an official response on April 6, 2016.  

And yet, the beat goes on.  Surfrider’s Monterey Chapter is as persistent and steadfast as ever.  Just last week, on Martin Luther King Day, in collaboration with Santa Cruz-based Save Our Shores and members of the public, Monterey Chapter activists voiced their opposition to Cemex in a march along the beach, which ended near the company’s site, between Marina State Beach and the Salinas River National Wildlife Refuge.   Dozens of concerned Monterey Bay area residents attended, declaring their opposition to Cemex’s unpermitted taking of sand from the beach.  Signs staunchly stated, “Take a Stand.  Save Our Sand,” as protestors – who value and strive to protect beaches along California’s coastline, particularly along Monterey Bay - fought the taking of the precious resource.  

The protest kept the light shining on Cemex’s operations, and local media took note.   Check out the coverage here and here.

Surfrider’s Monterey Chapter continues to engage in the campaign to stop Cemex, and actively encourages both the California Coastal Commission and California State Lands Commission to stop Cemex from stealing Marina’s precious public trust sand resources.   You can learn more about the campaign here, and become a member of the Monterey Chapter to join the good fight!