The Dare County Waterways Commission discussed Monday both the short-term and long-term future of dredging Hatteras Inlet at its virtual meeting.
Dr. Richard Hilderman of Sunset Beach, where the Corps of Engineers has recently approved permits for a terminal groin, contends that responsibility for protecting the coastal environment has been placed in the hands of engineers, rather than natural resource agencies and coastal scientists.
Waters near Cape Lookout have become increasingly perilous because of shoaling and shifting channels, despite a two-year-old agreement between Carteret County and the National Park Service that has provided more than $5.67 million for dredging.
The Army Corps of Engineers is identifying sites and gathering data for a 20-year management plan to provide answers on where spoils from nonfederal dredge projects may be placed.
Shoaling threatens navigation in economically vital Hatteras Inlet, prompting frustrated fishers to dub the South Ferry Channel the “Ditch of Death.” A consultant, responding to conditions, told the Dare County Waterways Commission Monday that continuing to dredge the passage appears “futile.”
The hopper dredge Murden began work Saturday dredging the South Ferry Channel and will work on the problem shoal until April 21.
A 90-day dredging project to deepen and widen the channels within Shallowbag Bay and Roanoke Sound in Manteo was completed last month.
Dare County Board of Commissioners approved the additional funding needed to complete the Hatteras Inlet Dredging Project.
Two Sunset Beach property owners have filed an application to appeal a recently modified state permit to dredge South Jinks Creek.
The Corps of Engineers published Thursday its final environmental review and findings that green-light the elimination of the environmental window for state port harbor dredging.
The representative 16th-century sailing ship Elizabeth II departed Roanoke Island Festival Park Tuesday for its first maintenance haul out since 2017.
Maintenance dredging at the harbor for the state port in Morehead City and simultaneous beach nourishment project for 2.5 miles of Atlantic Beach oceanfront is one-third complete.
Dare County Waterways Commission heard details during its Wednesday meeting on a comprehensive proposal laying out numerous options for disposal of dredge material.
The N.C. Division of Coastal Management has approved the Corps’ request to eliminate the environmental window for dredging at the ports in Morehead City and Wilmington.
Realignment of the federal channel and the Corps’ proposal to expand the area included in the existing federal authorization for Rollinson Channel could help in addressing challenges in the management of Hatteras Inlet.
Dredging was set to begin Monday at Roanoke Sound and Shallowbag Bay, but technical and weather challenges mean more waiting before the Elizabeth II can set sail again.