Kimberley Ports Authority announced recently that the State Government has committed funding to carry out channel and turning basin works at the Port of Broome in readiness for the 2019 cruise season.
CEO Kevin Schellack said, “Channel work investigations are in the early stages and consultants BMT JFA have provided a scope of works and listed the feasibility studies required before the extent of works can be fully identified.”
Current estimates show that 70,000 cubic meters of material may need to be removed from the channel. KPA is investigating a small amount of dredging adjacent to and north of the wharf totaling an additional 15,000 cubic meters of material to be removed.
According to KPA, environmental studies have begin with the lodgement of a Sampling Analysis Plan to the Federal Department of Environment and Energy for review and approval. Sediment samples are to be completed in late October and will then undergo laboratory testing to ensure there are no contaminants in the dredge material.
A small jack up barge will be utilized in November to complete the geophysical survey by drilling boreholes to determine the properties of the dredge material. To complete the detailed channel design data collectors for the Metocean studies will be deployed in the channel to determine real time tidal and wave data.
Final feasibility reports may need to be provided to both Federal and State government agencies for approvals, this is still to be determined as the studies progress. A final approved detailed Channel Design would enable the project to proceed, added KPA.
Kimberley Ports Authority concluded that at this stage it is most likely that a cutter suction dredge will be able to complete the works. If sea dumping is deemed appropriate KPA will apply for a sea dumping permit to place spoil in the deeper parts of the existing channel near the dredging site to minimize the area of disturbance.