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Artificial Reef in Kovalam
By Sean Collins
What do they say about bringing sand to the beach? One thing we do know, if the ocean wants to go somewhere, it will get there eventually - one way or the other.
As surfers, we often wonder why we don't use the ocean's natural forces to help stabilize coastal erosion. Traveling around the world we often see many beaches with the perfect setup of great waves over an offshore reef and calmer nearshore waters, resulting in a balanced environment so the beach doesn't erode.
Our current coastal erosion strategy appears to be nothing more than a gigantic bandaid that siphons millions of dollars from our economy on a regular cycle. Well, perhaps the first step toward a more practical solution has finally arrived.
ASR Limited, a well known company from New Zealand that employs lots of surfer scientists, has introduced a new "multi-purpose reef" that was recently installed along the west coast of India to help stabilize coastal erosion. So far the reef has succeeded in helping to slow down the erosion by expending the wave energy further offshore. We can only imagine the similar positive benefits that could be recognized in some of our problematic erosion areas here in the USA.
But most exciting to us as surfers is the quality of the wave over this new multi purpose reef in India. This could very well be the best wave an artificial reef has ever created and on the right swell, could even possibly host an ASP World Tour event.
Coming soon will be an in depth Surfline feature on the new ASR multi purpose reefs that will also address many of the hurdles and challenges to be encountered during the potential approval process in the USA.
In the meantime, check out the footage of this new reef going off and let your imagination run wild...