Wednesday 24 August 2016
The culmination of an extensive study and consultation into the health of three Bega Valley Shire estuaries is now open for public comment on Council’s website.
Seeking feedback on the Draft Targeted Catchment Management Plans for Cuttagee Lake, Nelson Lagoon and Middle Lagoon is the final step for ensuring ongoing water quality and environmental management at each of the estuaries.
Coastal Management Officer, Kyran Crane, said all three estuaries are intermittently closed and opened lakes or lagoons (ICOLLs) which possess significant ecological, recreational and socioeconomic values all of which are reliant on good water quality.
“The water quality of a lake or lagoon is highly dependent on the land use practices and environmental quality of the catchment,” he said.
“Issues such as unsealed roads, intensive land use, natural and manmade erosion all impact on water quality.
“This impact can be particularly intensified for ICOLLs as there is reduced tidal flushing when the entrance bar is closed, therefore catchment inputs can inadvertently affect a range of water quality parameters.
“The three estuaries selected for this study are all extremely sensitive to catchment disturbance which directly affects water quality.
“It is crucial that good water quality is maintained in these ICOLLs, not only for recreation purposes but because Nelson Lagoon is also an oyster growing lake which relies directly on the quality of the water.”
Mr Crane said Council has comprehensive Coastal Zone Management Plans in place for all of its major estuaries, but some of the smaller ICOLLs can be managed without the need for full scale plans.
As a result, the Rapid Catchment Assessment methodology was developed to identify issues within estuaries and catchments and to highlight areas for targeted rehabilitation.
The draft plans are the result of extensive public consultation, where feedback from local stakeholders and community members has been reflected in the documents now on public exhibition.
If you would like to make any comments on the plans, please send submission to email@example.com and address to the General Manager (attention Kyran Crane). The plans will be on exhibition for a period of 28 days from Wednesday 24 August.
To view the plans, go to Have Your Say
Photograph: Nelsons Lagoon.