Community, council again confront predicted sea level rise
District Council of Mallala has conducted a third round of public consultation for residents of Middle Beach in response to its current Coastal Adaptations Study.
The workshop, held at the Middle Beach Caravan Park on May 21, was attended by 16 residents, DCM mayor Duncan Kennington, DCM Two Wells ward councillor Mark Wasley and council staff, and was facilitated by DCM strategic projects coordinator, Carol Muzyk.
Ms Muzyk said council again received vital feedback from concerned community members on strategies proposed to respond to current and predicted flood events for the settlement.
Ms Muzyk said the University of South Australia (UniSA) was engaged by council early last year to develop strategies to address predicted sea level rise, frequent flooding and coastal erosion at Middle Beach.
“After hearing from Mark Western from UniSA, the 16 residents who attended the workshop worked with staff and elected members to provide feedback on the proposed strategies and how the council and the community can best respond to flood events in the immediate future and when flood levels are predicted to be a further 0.3 metres higher, ” she said.
“A key point about Middle Beach is there is little that can be done to protect the settlement from flooding.
“The proposed strategies are focused on implementing flood control strategies as opposed to flood protection strategies, which are viable in the other three coastal settlements of Parham, Webb Beach and Thompson Beach.”
Two Wells resident and long-time Middle Beach user, Malcolm Frost, attended the meeting and was pleased to hear council propose physical protections for the settlement.
“To have some actual arguments for the physical protections proposed for some of Middle Beach was very positive,” Mr Frost said.
“What people really think about is looking after the current situation, not what might happen into the future (and) to protect some areas of Middle Beach in the current situation requires some work to be done, a levy around the back, with other measures considered also.
“What is required is for physical work to happen and it seems it is very difficult for that to get organised as our council doesn’t seem to have very much in the way of resources.”
At the completion of the workshop Ms Muzyk highlighted council is keen to receive more information from the community with regard to past flood events and to also receive further feedback on proposed flood control strategies.
“The next step is to discuss the proposed strategies with various State government groups to ensure they meet their requirements prior to finalisation of the report and presentation to council seeking endorsement,” she said.