Rodríguez Paneque, R. and Finkl, C.W., 2020. Erosion of carbonate beaches on the northeastern coast of Cuba. Journal of Coastal Research, 36(2), 339–352. Coconut Creek (Florida), ISSN 0749-0208.
Beaches on the northeastern coast of Cuba have made this area one of the most important tourist destinations in the Caribbean, despite the fact that many beaches are visibly eroded. In this study, the causes and magnitude of coastal erosion on the northeastern coast of Cuba were evaluated using the Digital Shoreline Analysis System (DSAS 4.3) application, satellite images, and beach profiles. Time frames between 7 and 14 years were considered from 2003 to 2017 using satellite images and between 11 and 18 years using beach profiles. Results of this investigation showed that 56% of northeastern coast beaches tend to erode at a rate of less than 1.2 m/y. An increase in the recurrence of extreme events (hurricanes and tropical storms) during the last 39 years induced more beach erosion. It was furthermore observed that El Niño–Southern Oscillation events enhanced the sedimentary balance of the beaches by returning sand volumes that were transported in a westerly direction to their original shoreline locations. Possibly due to sea-level rise, which may be occurring in response to global warming, beaches on the northeast coast will retreat on average about 0.17 m/y. At this rate of shoreline recession, by the end of the twenty-first century, 14% of the beaches on this littoral will be lost, and the width of 27% of the other beaches will be significantly reduced.