Busselton unveils plan to deal with coastal erosion

The City of Busselton, WA, is seeking community feedback on a Draft Coastal Hazard Risk Management and Adaption Plan that will help safeguard their coastal community from erosion and coastal inundation for the next 100 years.

The Plan, which is a requirement of the State Government Coastal Planning Policy, responds to an estimated sea level rise of 0.9m over the next 100 years, as well as recognising the naturally mobile and dynamic nature of the City’s coast.

It has been developed to ensure the community and decision makers understand and are equipped to manage the potential future risks to private, public and community assets including our coastal wetlands.

The draft plan breaks the City’s coastline into 19 management areas. Within each area potential risks and management and/or adaptation options are identified including broad recommendations to protect, accommodate or retreat from the coastline.

The estimated cost of the ‘protect’ strategy is approximately $1.6B over 100 years and the cost of a ‘retreat’ strategy is approximately $9B over 100 years.

In the main, the draft recommends that a ‘protect’ strategy be pursued. Most of the costs would not need to be met until after 2040 and in many cases not until after 2070, the City said.

Importantly, the draft plan doesn’t propose that those costs are all met by ratepayers and recommends that the City continues to work with the State Government and other stakeholders to develop an equitable and sustainable funding model over time.

Photo: City of Busselton - Local Government