sand

17 Stories

Miami Beach's Sand Comes From Elsewhere ... Problematically

It's pumped up sand from seafloor, and now that nearby sand is tapped out

(Newser) - Sand may seem like an infinite natural resource, but as cities with beaches around the world know all too well, it's anything but. And Miami Beach, Fla., is standing at a crossroads now that it, along with the US Army Corps of Engineers, has spent years pumping up sand... More »

Sand Collapse in Oregon Kills Girl, 9

Child trapped under sand for 5 minutes as rescuers raced to dig her out

(Newser) - An end-of-summer trip to an Oregon beach turned tragic for a 9-year-old girl. As CNN reports, Isabel Grace Franks was digging a hole Friday evening with her siblings at Lincoln City's beach when the sand collapsed. "We heard screaming," says one tourist. "At first we thought,... More »

Fracking Creates Hot Commodity: Sand

Industry looking to gobble 95M pounds this year

(Newser) - The demand for sand is booming, and while you'll find it in cell phones and solar panels, the real beast driving up prices is the rather controversial practice of hydraulic fracturing, which mixes sand with water and chemicals and pumps it underground to force out natural gas. As the... More »

Kansas City Woman Surrounds Home With Sand

80 tons of it replaces lawn, though some neighbors hate it

(Newser) - It is the ultimate low-maintenance "lawn": A Kansas City, Missouri, homeowner said goodbye to grass by shipping in 80 tons of sand around her suburban home, reports KCTV . "Now being over 60, I've decided that I've owned the house for 33 years and that I wasn'... More »

Family of Woman Who Suffocated in Sand to Get $80M

Laura Miera died in 2002 after a tractor-trailer struck her car, buried it in sand

(Newser) - A judge has awarded nearly $80 million to the family of a woman who died in 2002 when a tractor-trailer struck her car and buried it in sand, suffocating the woman as teachers and students at a nearby school frantically tried to dig her out. Laura Miera had just dropped... More »

Sandy Left NY Island 54% Less Sandy

The hurricane has left Fire Island vulnerable to future storms, finds new study

(Newser) - Miami Beach isn't the only one running low on sand —a new study has found more than half of the sand on New York's Fire Island was washed away during Hurricane Sandy, LiveScience reports. Though 18% of the barrier island's sand has been replenished, the... More »

Florida Beaches Desperately Seeking Sand

With supplies running out, officials go looking for a new source

(Newser) - Some South Florida beaches are running low on one very critical supply: sand. The Army Corps of Engineers had been bringing in sand for beaches in Miami-Dade and Broward counties from offshore sources, but now those reserves have run out. That's a problem not just for castle-building enthusiasts, but... More »

Dune May Obliterate Darth Vader's Childhood Home

Star Wars set threatened by sand: scientists

(Newser) - Poor Anakin Skywalker: First he turns into Darth Vader, and now his childhood home is about to be eaten by a wind-blown sand dune. The Tunisia set for the Tatooine city of Mos Espa in Star Wars Episode I: The Phantom Menace is expected to soon be buried by the... More »

Boy Pulled From 11 Feet of Sand After Dune Collapse

Dune along Lake Michigan collapsed

(Newser) - A 8-year-old boy is in the hospital after being buried beneath 11 feet of sand for three-plus hours yesterday, reports CBS . The northern Indiana child was playing on dunes at a park along the shore of Lake Michigan, when one apparently collapsed, covering him even as his family scrambled to... More »

'Super Sand' Makes Water Safe to Drink

Rice University filtration idea might ease shortage of drinking water

(Newser) - Access to clean drinking water is not a new problem in the world, and neither is the solution offered by Rice University researchers: sand. Except theirs is an improved version. The regular stuff has long been used to filter water, but it doesn't do a very effective job. Cue... More »

'Gravel Bandits' Stealing Entire Indonesian Islands

Thieves took more of Krakatoa than monster eruption did

(Newser) - Indonesia is missing a few islands because of black marketeers who have been hauling off huge amounts of sand and gravel to sell to construction projects elsewhere in Asia. At least 24 islands have disappeared completely since 2005, and illegal sand mining has ruined the fishing industries of many others,... More »

Huge Sandstorm Turns Beijing Sky Orange

Storms have jumped sixfold in 50 years due to deforestation

(Newser) - China's capital woke up to orange-tinted skies today as the strongest sandstorm so far this year hit the country's north, delaying some flights at Beijing's airport and prompting a dust warning for Seoul. The sky glowed and a thin dusting of sand covered Beijing, causing workers to muffle their faces... More »

Dangerous Staph Germs Found at US Beaches

Bacteria cause nasty skin infections and pneumonia

(Newser) - Dangerous staph bacteria have been found in sand and water for the first time at five public beaches along the coast of Washington, and scientists think the state is not the only one with this problem. The germ is MRSA, or methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus—a hard-to-treat bug once rarely seen... More »

Architect: Mix Bacteria, Sand for Wall to Stop Sahara

Architect proposes solidifying sand dunes in belt across Africa

(Newser) - With the spread of the Sahara desert threatening the livelihoods of millions in Africa, architect Magnus Larsson proposes solidifying sand into a 3,700-mile wall, the BBC reports. Speaking at a conference today in England, Larsson outlined a plan to saturate sand dunes in a line stretching from Mauritania to... More »

Beach Sand Is Bad For You: Study

Contact with sand can increase risk of diarrhea, gastrointestinal sickening

(Newser) - Bird droppings, road runoff, and raw sewage are just some of the contaminants present at your local beach—and the reason playing in the sand could be hazardous to your health, the San Diego Union-Tribune reports. A new study, which assessed the health of more than 27,000 beach-goers over... More »

Sand May Be 5th State of Matter: Study

(Newser) - Sand exhibits so many unexplainable physical properties that some think granularity is a form of matter unto itself, Wired reports. Granular matter acts like a solid, a liquid, or a gas depending on the circumstance. “You walk on the beach, and the sand supports your weight,” said physicist... More »

Miami Beach Battles Sand Hassle

(Newser) - A new kind of sandstorm is brewing in South Florida. As its world-famous beaches face crippling erosion, Miami Beach is hitting up its neighbors for the scarce stuff. But with most of Florida's communities strapped, Miami Beach, like coastal communities in California and Hawaii, is turning to foreign countries, which... More »

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