Sunday, August 26, 2007

Crushed glass to be spread on beaches - Yahoo! News

Why does this sound like as good an idea as dumping old tires in the ocean to make an artificial reef? 

"You talk about glass beach and people have images of sharp glass shards but it's not that way at all," he said.

Recycled glass also has been used for beaches along Lake Hood in New Zealand and on the Dutch Caribbean island of Curacao.

It's unclear how much the project would cost Broward County, or if the project is even feasible. The state and county have so far spent about $600,000 just on tests and engineering.

The county tested a small patch of glass sand on a dry patch of beach last year, using sensors to measure effects of heat and moisture. Scientists have also conducted laboratory tests that show organisms and wildlife can thrive in the material just like natural sand, they said. The county is awaiting a permit to test glass sand in the surf zone.

Some people are raising caution flags.

"There's no way that you can predict all the environmental consequences of an action like this," said Dennis Heinemann, a senior scientist with the Ocean Conservancy. "There always will be unforeseen consequences."

Source: Crushed glass to be spread on beaches - Yahoo! News

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