Jacksonville Beach dunes held up against nor’easter, expert says

JACKSONVILLE BEACH, Fla. – A majority of the sand dunes at Jacksonville Beach, Atlantic Beach and Neptune Beach were not affected by the nor’easter that blew through Northeast Florida over the weekend, a local expert says.

According to Kevin Brown, who leads the Fletcher High marine science club and has been studying beach erosion for years, only about 5% of dunes along that stretch of coast were impacted.

That wasn’t the case in St. Johns County where parts of the beach were washed away during the two-day storm.

RELATED | Parts of Vilano Beach washing away with nor’easter waves, despite renourishment efforts

Brown was out assessing area beaches on Sunday after higher-than-normal tides combined with heavy rain and high winds on Friday and Saturday.


Brown said the storm did cause some erosion including about 40-50 feet of “high beach” that washed away at Jacksonville Beach and about 30-40 feet of “high beach” each at Atlantic and Neptune Beaches. High beach is the area where a majority of sand accumulates over time and acts as a last line of defense for the dunes.

MORE | Fletcher High students leading charge to protect Jax Beach dunes

On Monday, groups of Fletcher High School marine science students will be going on field trips to area beaches to plant sea oats and erect barriers to protect the dunes. Sea oats are known to help fortify dunes against erosion.

Copyright 2021 by WJXT News4Jax – All rights reserved.

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