Erosion management plan begins for the Clarence River

Published

A Transport for NSW spokesperson has announced the completion of the Clarence River Erosion Management Plan which will result in a number of changes to waterways management on the river from 1 September 2015.

"One of the key actions arising from the Regional Boating Plan process was the need to develop a state-wide evidence based approach for managing and mitigating boating-related erosion issues," the spokesperson said.

"This Management Plan is about striking a balance between the environmental needs of the river and ensuring boaters, businesses and local residents can enjoy the river for years to come in a sustainable and responsible manner.

"A set of twelve actions will be undertaken in an effort to preserve the river bank as well as provide certainty for boaters and local businesses who use the river for recreation and commercial benefit," the spokesperson said

These actions include putting up signage to prohibit activities by vessels that generate large waves such as wakeboarding and wakesurfing, from operating in two sections of the river. Remediation works to improve the resilience of riverbanks in key areas will also be undertaken.

The plan confirms that no new boating restrictions are currently required for a 35 kilometre stretch of the river between Molville Rocks and Ulmarra, provided that appropriate remediation works are undertaken.

The actions will be in place for a period of two years from 1 September 2015 to 1 September 2017. During this period, a new Committee established to implement the plan will, monitor the river state, assess the plan’s effectiveness and consult with stakeholders and community on any changes that may be required.

"Waterways are often the heart of the cities and towns that surround them and are enjoyed by local residents, boaters and local businesses. This plan is intended to accommodate all river users while contributing to the health of the river," the spokesperson said.

In developing the final Management Plan, Transport for NSW consulted with the community and included feedback from the University of NSW Water Research Laboratory’s report, and responses to the draft Management Plan which was exhibited in Grafton on 10 July 2015 and published online for public comment, which closed on 31 July 2015.

Roads and Maritime Boating Safety Officers will carry out targeted education to recreational boaters on the new strategy this weekend as part of the 2015 Bridge to Bridge event at Grafton.

Up to $3 million from NSW Boating Now, through the Government’s Regional Boating Plan program, has been allocated to help implement improvements to boating and erosion management across the Tweed, Clarence and Williams Rivers.