Coral Protection – Puerto Caucedo


Location: Puerto Caucedo, Dominican Republic
Date: 2002 – 2003
Involved parties: Ballast Nedam (Van Oord), CSX World Terminals, Caucedo Investments Incorporated
Technical Readiness Level: 7 – system prototype demonstration in operational environment
Environment: Cities, Ports
Keywords: port, dredging, coral, monitoring

Building with Nature design

More emphasis has been put on finding sustainable solutions when working in or close to coral areas. The ecosystem is adopted as a starting point for the design. When construction works and dredging take place in the vicinity of corals, the corals are monitored and adverse effects are mitigated, often in combination with relocation or recolonization of affected areas.

Traditional design

Historically, dredging project management was traditionally focused solely on carrying out appointed mitigation or compensation measures covering project impacts. Loss of coral habitat was taken as necessary to enable economic development or coastal safety. (picture: plume from coral rock dredging – source PIANC)

For the construction of the Puerto Caucedo Multimodal Terminal, approximately 2 million m3 of material had to be dredged from the harbour basin and the entrance channel. As the project is located near a coral reef and a popular holiday resort, adverse impacts on the coral communities were not desirable from both an environmental, social and economic point of view.

An extensive Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) identified various coral colonies that may be affected by the construction works. Hence, mitigation measures were incorporated into the Construction Contract Documents and the water quality and coral was monitored such that no adverse impacts would occur.

Dredging works Puerto Caucedo Multipmodel Terminal.
Dredging works Puerto Caucedo Multimodal Terminal.