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Geo tubes will save homes and dunes and make the beaches better

Discussion in 'All About SoWal' started by EZ4144, Aug 6, 2005.

  1. EZ4144

    EZ4144 Beach Lover

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    Hi Sowal.com- I came on here from a link someone sent me about the talk about the septic tanks on the beach which really won't be a problem anymore beecause they will be protected from high water by this geotubes system. wanted to share some photos that some of my neighbors are putting in a t gulf trace. I know a lot of other owners are also going to do the same thing all along the beaches and they have been proven to work just fine in other places. This product is a series of textile bags that can be filled with water and then any color sand for a permanent application and covered with 3 feet of sand to prevent erosion of the dune and provide a restored dune. The sand can be cheaper dirt like seen in the photos cause it isn't going to be spread by waves or anything else. This method is really infailable. Thge Dep doesn't stop it like some other things like boulders or seawalls.

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  2. Smiling JOe

    Smiling JOe SoWal Expert

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    Are you sure that is not a future artificial reef? Or, perhaps a dump truck of dirty sand surrounded by synthetic material just waiting to be punctured by a floating walkover? If I were a betting man, and I am not, I would put a wager out that I will see these things swept out to see or at least onto the beach, where no one will be able to drag it back before unloading all of the dirt from it, or in time before sand covers it up. Good Luck!
     
  3. BeachDreamer

    BeachDreamer Beach Fanatic

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    I'm wondering how long it would take to decompose and release the dirt held within. It doesn't look likely to last more than a few years...
     
  4. DBOldford

    DBOldford Beach Fanatic

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    Have to wonder how well this big raft would hold up to a sharp piece of rogue walkover lumber adrift in a storm or a piece of rusty rebar. I have a vision of it floating in a stormy Gulf or on Western Lake, leaking its "cargo" like some kind of hazmat jellyfish. I'm not at all confident.
     
  5. Richard

    Richard Beach Comber

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    As I noted over in the emergency meeting thread, I have no real knowledge of this system and therefore have no opinion for or against it. I am happy new potential solutions are being looked at by the county and local residents. I do know that both the DEP and U.S Fish and Wildlife say the systems do not work. The county asked the DEP about using it and were told no.

    Attached is a report the DEP contracted on the protect tube in Gulf County.

    Notes:
    Protect tubes are designed for 5 to 10 year storms not hurricanes

    At the site in Gulf County, erosion was about the same as adjacent unprotected properties.

    At the site, after hurricane Ivan flanks were installed on either end and
    they resulted in additional erosion

    At the site, erosion was induced landward of the structure (lee side) and
    a trench under the homes was created. Since this report was filed a retaining wall has been constructed landward of the protect tube.
     
  6. Kim Smith

    Kim Smith Beach Lover

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    Are they allowed to do something like this without the approval of the county?
     
  7. Richard

    Richard Beach Comber

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    The county is not too good about enforcing their own rules and regulations. They often ignore DEP and U.S. Fish and Wildlife requirements. Enforcement is generally complaint driven. If no one complains nothing happens. They say it's easier to ask for forgiveness and than permission.
     
  8. JustBeachy

    JustBeachy Beach Lover

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    Took the words right out of my head, right on down to 'hazmat jellyfish'.
     
  9. Smiling JOe

    Smiling JOe SoWal Expert

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    I am no scientist, but I know that there is no way that this geo (makes it sound natural doesn't it?) tube will be there after the next major storm. It will go just prior to the house. My question is, how can these things be labeled so that we can later identify the owner and make them clean up there poop?
     
  10. Miss Kitty

    Miss Kitty Meow

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    There's a new book out...."Surrounded by Idiots"....haven't read it yet, but somehow I think there will be a VOL. 2!
     
  11. lurker1

    lurker1 Beach Comber

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    Perhaps we should walk out there and, with a permanent marker, write the owner's address on the tubes.
     
  12. kurt

    kurt Admin Staff Member

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    The State of Texas has studied geotubes and has a lot of good data online: http://www.beg.utexas.edu/coastal/geotube.htm


    Final report .pdf - has some good photos


    ...The geotextile tubes have been effective for temporary erosion control, but they may fail when exposed to direct wave attack. During the study period, two of the Treasure Island (on Follets Island) geotextile tubes were destroyed and holes, slumping, and collapsed sections were observed along other projects. To prevent failure it is critical to (1) keep the geotextile tubes covered with sand, (2) maintain a beach in front of them through beach nourishment, and (3) repair holes in the fabric as soon as possible...


    ...Because the geotextile tubes cannot be recovered through natural processes, covering them requires a significant effort. Furthermore, maintaining even a sparse vegetation cover on at least half of the project lengths has not been possible...


    ...Once the beach erodes to the base of the tubes, they become undermined and begin to slump seaward. Direct wave attack on the tubes quickly removes the sand cover, damages the ultraviolet radiation shroud, and causes punctures...


    Conclusions

    1. The storm-surge protection function of the geotextile tubes had not been fully tested as of March 2003.

    2. The geotextile tubes will fail when exposed to direct wave attack making them useful only for short-term erosion control. This is evident in the failure of the Treasure Island middle project, and in the holes in the tube fabric and collapsed sections along the Gilchrist West project. To prevent failure it is critical to keep the tubes covered with sand, to maintain a beach in front of them, and to repair holes in the fabric as soon as possible. It is also important to note that, during storms, erosion and vegetation line retreat may occur landward of the geotextile tubes as was observed at the northern Treasure Island project.

    3. Beaches in front of the geotextile tubes need to be at least 50-ft wide to keep the tubes from being exposed and damaged during a mild storm like TS Allison. A thick and vegetated sand cover on the tubes can partly compensate for a narrower beach.

    4. During Tropical Storms Allison and Fay, the geotextile tubes prevented the vegetation line from retreating landward of houses. However, those houses to which the vegetation line would have retreated were probably seaward of the natural line of vegetation at the time the tubes were installed.

    5. Because it is under the influence of San Luis Pass, the Treasure Island shoreline is historically dynamic undergoing periods of dramatic retreat and advance. However, net long-term shoreline movement is landward. The shoreline is currently in a retreat phase, and the geotextile tubes cannot stop the movement. Along the northern reach of the Treasure Island North project, erosion has proceeded behind the tubes.

    6. Other than the special cases of the Treasure Island projects, the Gilchrist projects have proven to be the most difficult to keep covered with sand. The Gilchrist West project has the highest percentage per project of exposed geotextile tubes and contributes by far the greatest length of exposed and damaged tubes along the upper coast. The primary reason for this is the relatively seaward placement of the tubes causing narrower and lower beaches in front of them and thus less protection than at the other major projects.

    7. In June 2001, after Tropical Storm Allison, 44% of the lengths of geotextile tubes were exposed along their seaward faces. Maintenance activity and fair weather conditions allowed the recovering of all but 15% of the project lengths by November 2001. Most of the exposed tubes are along the Gilchrist West project.

    8. In September 2002, after Tropical Storm Fay, 79% of the lengths of geotextile tubes were exposed and 69% were still exposed by March 2003.

    9. Keeping at least a 25% vegetation cover along the Gilchrist East, Gilchrist West, and Dellanera projects has not been possible.

    10. Keeping the geotextile tubes repaired, sand covered, and vegetated requires a significant effort.

    11. Beaches in front of the geotextile tubes are narrower than adjacent beaches. This is primarily because the tubes were installed farther seaward than the natural landward boundaries represented by the line of vegetation, foredunes, or bluffs.

    12. Some geotextile tube segments were routed seaward of individual houses or groups of houses and departed from a shore-parallel orientation. These areas create particularly narrow beach segments that are not passable during times of moderately elevated water levels of 1 to 2 ft (0.30 to 0.61 m) above mean higher high water.

    13. After rainfall, outflows from street drainage pipes along the Pirates Beach project erode channels perpendicular to the beach that at times hinder passage along the beach.

    14. Geotextile tubes alter the natural geomorphology of the beach/dune system and have hindered the formation of coppice mounds and natural dunes.

    15. The geotextile tubes have not enhanced erosion rates on adjacent beaches with the possible exception of the Treasure Island north project. If the beaches in front of the tubes are not nourished with sand from outside the littoral system, then there may be a small enhancement of erosion of adjacent beaches until the tubes are destroyed by wave action.
     
  13. Smiling JOe

    Smiling JOe SoWal Expert

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    I certainly do not want to cause or be blamed for my marker's ink destroying the tubes, thereby causing the failure of the geo tube's walls and the polution of the beach. Not my game.
     
  14. Smiling JOe

    Smiling JOe SoWal Expert

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    Isn't that Lee Perry's house directly behind the Geo Tubes?
     
  15. Smiling JOe

    Smiling JOe SoWal Expert

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    Wait a minute! According to the County Commissioners' most recent decision, only the emergency shore-up fill can be lesser grade sand, and even it has to be a 7.2 on the Munsell. All other sand has to meet an 8.1 level on the Munsell Scale, which would include the sand inside the tubes. That is only my interpretation. How do you think the new rules apply? Should this "dirt" also be tested to meet an 8.1? We do know that these tubes will break down or puncture, and spill dirty dirt along the beaches.
     
  16. aquaticbiology

    aquaticbiology fishlips

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    amen to the labelling, but I'd bet the house falls on it first, before it gets washed away. one or two good and nasty rainfalls should do it, then raze the collapsed structure and make them move to 660 feet away from any shoreline

    if you want to know where all the sand went - just look to Mississippi's casino coast which now has a really pretty white sand shelf and Texas, especially around Galveston's barrier island complex, which grew about 2 miles in overall length. Even Dauphin Island in Alabama got a little bit longer. Big part of my job these days is eyestrain from staring at satellite photos.
     
  17. Ocean Lover

    Ocean Lover bean

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    Interesting...do you have any satellite photos to share?
     

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