Saving our coast

Protecting coastal towns
Planning is underway to protect coastal townships in the district, with two recent workshops discussing a Coastal Adapation Study presented by District Council of Mallala.
All coastal settlements in council’s area have been assessed, including Middle Beach, Thompson Beach, Webb Beach and Parham.
Council and residents must plan for the future, with the study proposing a series of recommendations and actions.
Around a 100 people have taken part in two recent workshops to discuss the District Council of Mallala’s plan for protecting coastal townships in its district.
The council’s Coastal Adaptations Study – which has assessed the possible impacts of potential sea level rise on coastal communities and suggests a range of recommendations – has been out for community consultation, and workshops held in March hope to help guide council’s planning.
DCM chief executive officer, Charles Mansueto, said the study was key for council to plan for the future and was an important document.
“It’s looking at what information we have to upgrade, what emergency responses might be needed, how we get the community involved, how do we prepare ourselves,” Mr Mansueto said.
“It’s a planned approach rather than a reactive approach (and) it’s a key study, it has a huge impact.”
All the coastal settlements in the DCM area have been assessed, including Middle Beach, Thompson Beach, Webb Beach and Parham, with the study proposing a series of recommendations and actions for each.
“In the majority of cases there’s upgrades to infrastructure to assist the community to be able to deal with sea level rise,” Mr Mansueto said.
At the March 26 workshop at Parham around 60 people attended, and the following night another 40 gathered at Middle Beach.
DCM infrastructure and planning services strategic project coordinator, Carol Muzyk, said it was encouraging to see the community proactive in providing feedback to the adaptation responses proposed.
“Community members casino online worked in small groups to discuss options with council staff and elected members,” Ms Muzyk said.
“The workshops highlighted our community is willing to collaboratively work together to decide on the best adaptation responses to sea level rise.
“The workshops also highlighted the strong community spirit and willingness that exists to help out one another during a flood event.”
However, due to the direct positioning of homes along the beachfront of Middle Beach, Mr Mansueto said plans for that coastal settlement required further investigation and another community meeting has been scheduled for May 21.
“It was a productive and informative session with the local community and one of the outcomes from the session was that a further workshop should be held with the Middle Beach community in May to explore the proposed options further and in particular collect further information on historical events,” he said.
“It’s proposed recommendations for the settlements, excluding Middle Beach, will be presented to council shortly, allowing more time for information to be collated and strategies for the Middle Beach settlement explored, without delaying considerations of the other settlements.”
Ms Muzyk said the information and feedback from the community would be collated in a Community Engagement Report, which will later be presented to council.
Council will also consider the responses collected at the workshops and the written submission to the Draft Framework Reports when determining the most appropriate adaptation strategies.

Bec O’Brien joined the Echo team in 2011and has a degree in journalism from the University of South Australia. She has worked at the Port Lincoln Times newspaper, written for the Tennis SA magazine and in the past has been heard reading the news on 3D radio.Bec is also a fully qualified primary school teacher and combines her love of writing, photography and learning with her role at the Echo.She enjoys the connections she makes with the people in her community and is always keen to see a good story shared.Bec and husband Kieren live in Two Wells with their three young daughters, one dog and a pony.

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