The nation of Antigua and Barbuda is located at the center of the Eastern Caribbean’s Leeward Islands group. The beaches of Antigua and Barbuda are famous worldwide and they are vital for economic, ecological and social well being. They provide essential benefits to the environment by protecting coastal lands from wave action particularly at the time of hurricanes. Local residents and tourists find the beaches alluring and it’s a part of recreational resource. They are the nesting place for the sea turtles and also provide habitats for the coastal plants and the animals. Besides, the beaches are the culturally significant component of the environment.
In September 1995, Hurricane Luis, a giant category-four hurricane eroded the beaches of Antigua and Barbuda with its massive waves. The dead sea grass engulfed the beaches and trash tattered from coral reefs were flown all over destroying the beaches. The beaches have to endure enormous damage due to the hurricane. The hurricane left its effect on the beaches and beach erosion has become a serious cause of concern for the populace. Even before the Hurricane Luis, beach erosion was a huge problem for Antigua and Barbuda. Northwestern Antigua can boast of having one of the most well-liked tourist beaches named Dickenson Bay. Sadly, between 1991 from 1994 the beach eroded at 3 feet per year. In addition, fallen trees, bare tree roots and constricted beaches are a sorry sight in Barbuda.
The extraction of sand from beaches and bank is also the culprit of beach erosion. The examples of the same can be found in Fort James and Darkwood Beach. In the pretext of cleaning the beaches after the damage caused by the hurricane, extensive sand mining took place in the coastal areas and this has added to the problem of beach erosion and has hampered the recovery process. Beaches add to the beauty of a nation and they must be preserved at any cost.