Artificial protection needed at Wasque
To the Editor:
The Schifter house move presents a sobering contradiction. The goal is to save a property from the effects of climate change, but the means to this end is leaving a horrendous carbon footprint.
The fossil fuel alone required to implement this house move (including all the related shipping, trucking, personnel transportation, etc.) is significant. Add to this all the other carbon-related factors that will arise in the course of any multi-million dollar endeavor of this nature. The result is that this house move will just make the ocean rise faster.
Some suggest that we should just let nature take its course. This might be fine if we had been doing that all along, but instead, we have been active participants in the evolution of our environment. One might even say that we humans are part of nature. The important point is that we have made quite a mess, and we need to take responsibility for how we are going to continue to dwell on this planet.
A couple of months ago, I proposed an alternative to the house move. I suggested installing a surplus ship on the tip of Wasque Point to serve as a temporary groin or jetty. By placing a ship at this location, sand would naturally accumulate and the beach would grow. The ship can be lowered and stabilized by filling it with water, and it can be raised for readjustment by emptying it of water.
The ship would catch the easterly flow of sand that is coming from up-Island and is ending up in the growing sandbars between Martha's Vineyard and Nantucket.