Saving South Australia’s beaches

If elected in March a Marshall Liberal Government will invest $4 million in measures to protect South Australia’s unique coastline and improve water quality in Gulf St Vincent.

The State Liberals will increase sand replenishment and seagrass restoration measures, establish a new coast protection research and development fund, and take the first steps towards developing an ambitious series of wetlands to improve the quality of the water entering the sea.

“South Australia is blessed with over 5,000 kilometres of pristine coastline and some of the best beaches in Australia,” said Shadow Minister for Environment David Speirs.

“However, the Weatherill Labor Government has failed to maintain our coastline, particularly metropolitan beaches like West Beach, which is literally washing away.

“The Weatherill Government’s Adelaide’s Living Beaches strategy is failing and the government is keeping its head in the sand, putting coastal protection in the ‘too hard basket’.

“This strategy has failed to address the problem of sand drift which has seen millions of tonnes of sand continue to drift further north causing mass erosion on some of our most popular metropolitan beaches like Seacliff, Brighton, Glenelg, West Beach and Henley.

“Anyone who has been down to West Beach recently can clearly see the beach has been washed away and is often roped off because there’s a massive drop off where the sand dunes meet the water.

“Our beautiful beaches are part of our way of life in South Australia and that’s why we will invest $4 million to protect our coastline and enhance our beaches.

“Hundreds of thousands of people enjoy our metropolitan beaches each year but if urgent action isn’t taken we’ll continue to see the condition of these beaches deteriorate.

“A Marshall Liberal Government will make saving our metropolitan beaches an absolute priority.

“We will invest $1 million to increase sand replenishment measures on our metropolitan beaches, restoring the sand that our beaches are currently losing to sand drift so that South Australians and tourists can continue to enjoy our beaches.

“We will also invest $1 million to map and begin developing new wetlands to prevent damaging run-off filled with sediment and pollutants from contaminating our coastal waters and beaches, especially into the Gulf of St Vincent.

“Importantly we’re going to establish a coastal protection research and development fund and invest $1 million to reduce our reliance on pumping and carting sand in the long term which costs millions of dollars each year.

“Seagrass is also fundamental to protecting our beaches from the power of the ocean and the effects of storms and that’s why we will spend $1 million on seagrass meadow restoration.

“Our beaches and coastline are too unique and important to our way of life for us to stand by with our head in the sand and watch wash away.”

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