The realities of coastal erosion in Aguada, Puerto Rico

The erosion you often hear people talking about has hit very close to home. It’s not just happening in my neighborhood – I’ve seen it in parts of Rincón, too. I’m sure it’s happening in other parts of the island as massive ocean swells, earthquakes, & hurricanes are changing the way this island looks. These images were taken on June 17, 2020, in Espinal, an area of Aguada that shares a border with Aguadilla.

It’s almost unbelievable to see how this coastline has changed in just a few short years. This home used to be hidden amongst the trees behind the beach & it’s now buried in the sand near the shore.

When ocean swells erode the coastline there is often debris left on the beach.

This is part of a park that had covered tables & benches. It was located across from La Casa del Dorado, a popular restaurant that has been forced to change locations due to the erosion & changing coastline.

Surprisingly enough, there is a home being constructed precisely where the erosion is taking place. I’ve never seen anyone working on the property, but I’ve witnessed the progression of the construction over the last year or so. While the neighbors have lost barrier walls & yard space with each swell that comes through, the owner of this property continues to build a home that seems unlikely to survive the near future.

Owning beachfront property is a life goal for many, but if you’re not careful those dreams could quite literally be washed away. I hope these photos serve to educate people on the reality of what’s happening in one neighborhood on the coast in northwestern Puerto Rico.