Monterey County Chapter

Sand Mining


On July 13, 2017, California Coastal Commissioners unanimously approved the proposed settlement to remove the Lapis Lustre Sand Mine in Marina. This historical settlement was signed by Cemex on June 23, after almost two years of investigations and confidential negotiations. 50 advocates and supporters attended the rally with T-shirts and signs urging Commissioners to approve the settlement.

What this means

Under the agreement, Cemex will have to cut back their production by roughly a third. They will continue to operate for three years, and stop taking sand from our beaches by the end of 2020.

After that, they will have three years to remove all the buildings, equipment, and restore the land to native dune habitat. They will be required to sell the property to a non-profit or government agency approved by the commission, and the land will be preserved for habitat, coastal access, and recreation.

Why this is a good deal

While Surfrider has been demanding that Cemex to close now, the reality is without an agreement they could have slowed down any action by potentially ten years through lawsuits. After that, they could have sold the land to a developer or hotel.

With this agreement, we know the land will be converted to parks and open space, and have a guarantee that the plant will close.


The Surfrider Foundation Monterey Chapter was working to stop what it believes is un-permitted development under the Coastal Act by the CEMEX sand mining plant in Marina, California. CEMEX is believed to mine approximately 270,000 cubic yards of sand a year (and perhaps more), from the beach. Sand is a precious resource, vital to our coasts, and CEMEX’s operations are suspected to be a primary cause of beach and dune erosion in southern Monterey Bay. CEMEX is believed to be the cause of major erosion at regional public beaches such as the Marina Dunes Preserve, Fort Ord Dunes State Park, and Monterey State Beach. The Monterey Chapter is engaged to protect the region’s coastal resources, including its sandy beaches, from CEMEX’s operations, and to ensure CEMEX operations are in legal compliance.

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Southern Monterey Bay has the worst coastal erosion in California.

View effects of erosion