Coastal erosion concerns arise at community meeting

Finding a solution: Inundation at Robert Point. Photo: Supplied.

Finding a solution: Inundation at Robert Point. Photo: Supplied.

Residents are pushing for more action on coastal erosion in Mandurah as the City continues to assess risks to northern beaches.

The Coastal Hazard Risk Management and Adaptation Plan (CHRMAP) is set to assess coastal hazard risks and identify solutions.

On Monday, residents attended a workshop to provide feedback on potential solutions.

The workshop touched on how climate change and developments had impacted the coastline.

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The draft CHRMAP report showed potential erosion impacts along the dunes and the foreshores in Halls Head.

There is currently no impact on local roads but the report suggested these could be impacted by 2030.

"Some of this erosion is classed as intolerable and is on the short-term plan as something we need to deal with," GHD senior coastal engineer Heather O'Keefe said.

"Potential adaptation options are continuing beach nourishment, dune conservation and revegetation, raising road levels, and managing drainage."

While in San Remo flooding wasn't a concern because it was on higher ground, there was erosion potential with one resident at the meeting saying "quite often there's a 10-foot drop at the beach on Watersun Drive".

According to the Department of Transport, sand bypassing occurs annually. The sand is pumped to the south side of the Mandurah Ocean Entrance Channel to continue the natural flow of sand along the coast and maintain the northern beaches.

Sand bypassing at Town Beach.

Sand bypassing at Town Beach.

Mandurah resident Jacob Cumberworth shared concerns about the current sand bypassing mechanism.

"There is no natural replenishment of Town Beach," he said.

"Beaches are eroding on a six months period then we pump sand again - this is reducing the ability for sand dunes to regenerate."

Mr Cumberworth asked if there was an option to have permanent sand bypassing.

"We've been advocating to the state government for five years to get permanent sand bypassing," a GHD spokesperson said.

"The infrastructure is there and we've been arguing for a number of years to get it submerged so you don't have the machinery on the beach.

"Permanent sand bypassing will absolutely improve the current situation enormously but it won't totally solve it."

Some residents clapped in response, however, the spokesperson said other residents don't want permanent sand bypassing due to seeing machinery on the beach.

The CHRMAP report is hoped to be released to the public at the end of March 2022 once it is ratified by the council.