The beach at West Beach will get a significant boost in time for this summer with the delivery of 250,000 cubic metres of sand from land-based quarries beginning this week.
The initial supply of sand will come from a quarry in Mount Compass and be delivered via the West Beach boat ramp as part of the Marshall Liberal Government’s historic $48.4 million project to protect Adelaide’s metropolitan beaches.
Minister for Environment and Water David Speirs said this mass replenishment at West Beach is the first major step to delivering 500,000 cubic metres of sand from an external source as well as a long-term solution to saving West Beach.
“This is our most significant beach replenishment in decades with 250,000 cubic metres of sand – the equivalent of 100 Olympic-sized swimming pools – to be delivered, which will provide an environmental, social and economic boost for the western suburbs in time for summer,” Minister Speirs said.
“There’s a finite amount of sand in Adelaide’s beach system which is why we are bringing in sand from quarries, as well as recycling sand from where it naturally builds up along our coastline to help protect our most vulnerable beaches such as West Beach.
“We will continue to explore options for a further 250,000 cubic metres to be delivered next year, as well as start construction of a sand pumping pipeline to secure the future of West Beach for the long-term which will remove trucks from our beaches into the future.
“Unfortunately, the former Labor Government sat on their hands and failed to act for more than a decade causing West Beach to practically vanish. In fact, at the time of coming into government, beach volumes were the lowest since measurements began in the 1970s.
“We have seen the success of the Glenelg to Kingston Park pipeline that has been operating since 2013. The existing pipeline pumps around 100,000 cubic metres of sand each year to the southern beaches and has seen the re-establishment of stable, vegetated dune systems.
“Construction of the new sand recycling pipeline from Semaphore to West Beach will allow us to replicate this success and provide a long-term solution to the coastal erosion issues at West Beach and Henley Beach South.
“We know that trucking can cause disruption for local residents and we will continue to work with the West Beach community to minimise the impact during these upcoming works.”
Member for Colton Matt Cowdrey said recent storms further highlighted the need to deliver a long-term solution to erosion at West Beach.
“For too long West Beach residents have watched on helplessly as the beach has washed away right in front of them,” Mr Cowdrey said.
“This mass sand replenishment will provide a significant boost for West Beach in time for the upcoming summer which will be a welcomed by local residents, businesses as well as visitors.
“The construction of the sand recycling pipeline will help solve the problem once and for all and I am proud to be part of a government which is delivering for the people of the western suburbs.”
West Beach Surf Life Saving Club President Peter Zuill welcomed the government’s delivery of new sand to West Beach.
“The delivery of this additional sand couldn’t have come at a better time. The beach has suffered even more from the recent storms with significant impacts from West Beach through to Henley Beach South,” Mr Zuill said.
“This replenishment to our beach is positive for our club, the community and everyone who comes to West Beach to enjoy our beautiful coastline.”
West Beach Parks Chief Executive Kate Anderson said West Beach Parks’ guests, visitors and employees love the beautiful beach, but sand erosion is always a challenge.
“We welcome any initiative that will improve our beautiful coastline,” Ms Anderson said.
“The beach replenishment program is a significant boost to the West Beach Parks precinct and our offer as a tourism destination. It provides even more reason for people to stay and visit us.”
For more information on the Securing the Future of our Coastline project visit: www.environment.sa.gov.au/coasts