Saturday, 25 July 2009

Is Dunedin's beach erosion a sign of climate change?

From a POLL at the Otago Daily Times Sat, 25 Jul 2009
Below are two comments related to the POLL

I have lived in Tomahawk for 35 years from 1960 to 1995 and lived right across the road from the sandhills. During that time I have seen the line of dunes going down to such an extend that I circulated a petition expressing concern at the excessive sandmining that occurred. (I believe it is still going strong). The Ocean Grove Domain Board members rubbed their hands in glee at the goldmine at their doorstep and took no notice of the petition that was signed by 95% of the residents. When we amalgamated with Dunedin I wrote to the Dunedin City Council expressing my concern at the continuing sandmining and the erosion of the dunes. I received an answer from a Mr Archer who wrote that the Dunedin City Council shared my concern and that something would be done as soon it came under the Council's jurisdiction. In 1995 I left Tomahawk, disappointed with the lack of action as the Dunedin City Council despite their promises, did absolutely nothing. I believe that the erosion at Tomahawk beach is not only caused by nature, it also did have a mighty helping hand by the continuing sandmining over so many years

Beach Erosion - Submitted by MikeStk on Mon, 27/07/2009 - 11:19am.
It really doesn't matter whether it's caused by global warming or not - the fact is that peak high tides are eating away the only protection South Dunedin has between it and the Pacific. And all the we really have there is a pile of sand.

It's not like peak high tides like this are not predictable (hint: all the fuss about solar eclipses is a little related, tide tables are readily available). Let's face it if the sand loss continues for much longer we're going to have to build something like a concrete dike from St Clair to Lawyers Head.

As I've mentioned in this forum before I think this is potentially the most pressing problem the council has before it - it's quite scary to read that they've not budgeted anything for the issue - instead we're blowing our piggy bank on vanity projects like the stadium - any sensible local body should have reserves for just this sort of occurrence or should have anticipated the problem and have planned ahead.



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