The sandy coast of the State of Yucatan is subject to natural and anthropogenic disturbances. Coastal erosion is a clear example of these disturbances. Many actions have been proposed and implemented to combat this problem; however, they have been counterproductive. In the present work the evolution of the northern coastline of Yucatan, Mexico was studied. The GENESIS model was applied to assess the effect of groins, breakwaters parallel to the coast and sand nourishment. The model was calibrated with available oceanographic information; a thorough treatment of this information made the calibration consistent. It was found that: a) the obliquity of the incidence wave is the main cause of longitudinal sediment transport; b) the sediment transport produced as a result of the wave height gradient along the coast is negligible; and c) the incident waves on the coast present very low energy and are governed mainly by local wind action. The flexibility provided by the calibration coefficients in GENESIS allowed it to be used on the beaches of Yucatan; the values obtained during this research reproduced in an acceptable manner both the morphological changes observed and the volumetric variability of sediments. For these values and the calibration conditions, the model can be applied to analyze the evolution of the beaches in the Yucatan. Furthermore, it reinforces the hypothesis that the groins have accelerated erosion, breakwaters off the coast are a viable alternative to coastal erosion in the study area, and the placement of artificial sand is just a temporary solution.

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