Paper No. 5
Presentation Time: 1:30 PM-5:30 PM
BEACH PROFILE CHANGES ON THE CARIBBEAN ISLAND OF DOMINICA
Dominica (pronounced Dom-in-ee-ka) is an island located at the Northern end of the Lesser Antilles in the eastern Caribbean, lying between the two French islands of Guadalupe to the north and Martinique to the south. It is the largest of the Windward Islands in the Caribbean with an area of 790 sq. km, 49 km long and 29 km wide. At 26 million years old, the island is the youngest in the Caribbean, and the geologic substrate of the island consists mainly of basaltic lavas, andesitic tuffs, ashes and agglomerates. Because of the volcanic nature of the island a majority of the beaches have black sand; while a few of the beaches in the northeast have white sand due to quartz crystals found in the agglomerates and coral reefs located offshore. This study compares beach profile data collected in May 2004 with profile measurements collected from 1987-1992. Changes in beach width, volume, and sediment types will be discussed. In 1989 two hurricanes hit the island causing severe erosion to most of the beaches. Since then about half of the beaches on the island have remained stable where the other half have either eroded or accreted.