Shoreline Restoration and Management Plan
Indiana's beaches are eroding and need restoration. The National Park Service has prepared the draft Environment Impact Statement (EIS) for the Indiana Dunes Shoreline Restoration and Management Plan to do just that. This plan recommends methods to remedy erosion and damage to the dunes and beaches of Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore caused by built shoreline obstructions along Indiana's shore.
Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore includes most of the beaches along Indiana's shoreline from Trail Creek in Michigan City to U.S. Steel in Gary. As noted in this EIS, the shoreline in this area suffers from erosion that threatens national park resources, recreation opportunities, homes, and businesses. The erosion is largely due to the natural movement of sand being obstructed by navigational harbors and shoreline structures, resulting in sand accretion (too much sand) in some areas and sand starvation (too little sand) in others. Sand dredging and artificial beach nourishment operations have been used as stop-gap measures, but this process is not sustainable and does not address the long-term problem of protecting this valuable shoreline.
The laws and policies governing the National Park Service and Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore direct the NPS to identify the cause of resource damage and seek remedies that restore natural conditions when possible. In developing this shoreline restoration plan, the National Park Service has taken a leadership role in looking for solutions to this ongoing and increasing problem.
The draft EIS will be available for public comment for a period of 60 days commencing when the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency publishes the Notice of Availability in the Federal Register. One public meeting will be held; the specific date, time, and location will be announced in the local media and via various websites including the park's: www.nps.gov/indu. You may also call the park headquarters for information at 219-926-7561.
The best way to comment on the draft EIS is to use the electronic form located on this website: http:/parkplanning.nps.gov/INDUshoreline. In the navigation at the left, select the "Open for Comment" link to find the document and add comments. If you cannot use the electronic form you may mail or drop off a hard copy comment form and/or letter to the address below:
The remedies recommended in this plan cannot be undertaken by the National Park Service alone. It will require collaboration among the many entities that own and manage Lake Michigan's shoreline. Working together, we can protect this shoreline and protect public land, private homes, industry, and commerce for the future.
Constantine J. Dillon
Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore
Attention: Charles Morris, Environmental Protection Specialist
1100 North Mineral Springs Road
Porter, Indiana 46304-1299