Redland City Council has adopted the Coochiemudlo Island Shoreline Erosion Management Plan (SEMP), which outlines its strategy to manage current and future erosion risks.
Mayor Karen Williams said the development of the SEMP allowed Council to obtain a detailed technical understanding of the island’s coastal processes and opened an avenue for community engagement.
“Importantly, the SEMP recommends a number of management options for Council to protect the sub-tropical island from coastal erosion,” Cr Williams said.
“The principal recommendation is for post-storm beach nourishment across the island to help accelerate the natural recovery process and provide a buffer against future coastal hazards.
“Other recommendations include implementing an ongoing beach monitoring program, vegetation and stormwater management, formalising beach access, and sustainably relocating dredged sand.”
Cr Williams said the formal adoption of the plan followed significant research and consultation with key stakeholders.
“The Coochiemudlo Island SEMP includes input from coastal engineering consultants, a community reference group and State Government departments.
“It highlights the underlying causes of shoreline erosion through an assessment of the coastal processes occurring on the foreshore and a consideration of the island’s environmental, cultural and economic values.
“Home to hundreds of residents and an abundance of native wildlife, Coochiemudlo Island is a special part of Redlands Coast and is surrounded by an Emerald Fringe, a natural green belt containing within it woodlands, caves, beaches and wetlands.
“Like all islands it is subject to shoreline erosion which studies have shown is primarily linked to storm events.”
Division 4 Councillor, Lance Hewlett said Council would continue to update the community on the progress of implementing the SEMP’s recommended actions, which remained subject to Council’s annual budget development and budget prioritisation process.
“The adoption of the Coochiemudlo SEMP is a significant milestone,” Cr Hewlett said.
“It will be critical in enabling Council to continue to protect the beauty that is Coochiemudlo Island from coastal hazards.
“The island is the hidden gem of Redlands Coast. The Emerald Fringe is on Council’s schedule of local heritage places, and Norfolk Beach was where Captain Matthew Flinders landed on the island on 19 July 1799 – the first European to do so.
“I would like to thank members of the community reference group, drawn from a cross-section of the island community and representatives from Quandamooka Yoolooburrabee Aboriginal Corporation, for their time and effort throughout the SEMP project.
“Coochiemudlo Island residents have had a fantastic win today, knowing their perspectives have been considered through the representation on this group.”