Geographe Bay Seagrass Study and Sand Modelling

Following an extension to the studies in seagrass wrack dynamics and modelling completed by the University of Western Australia, Edith Cowan University and independent research company DHI the City of Busselton and the Department of Transport funded further detailed investigation into the transport of sand (sediment) within the bay and how it impacts the proposed structural changes designed to facilitate natural bypassing of seagrass.

The University of Western Australia (UWA) report follows detailed computer modelling by UWA scientists, led by Prof Charitha Pattiaratchi and guided by a specially formed community reference group, to assess how the reconfiguration, recommended in April last year in the 200 page study 'Seagrass Wrack Dynamics in Geographe Bay’, would impact on the transport of sediment

The Port Geographe Sediment and Seagrass Reference Group provided support for the UWA concept in its recommendation to the Port Geographe Community Consultation Forum (PGCCF) on 1 October 2010.

The PGCCF, chaired by Hon Barry House MLC, in turn endorsed the reference group recommendations. The concept has since been finalised following additional fine tuning and testing with a view to achieving a greatly improved flow of seagrass wrack and sediment in the area.

The modifications include:

  • Reconfiguration of the shape and length of the western breakwater;
  • Removal of the ‘Moonlight Bay’ groynes to eliminate trapping of sediment and seagrass wrack;
  • Re-alignment of the development foreshore; and,
  • Modification of the eastern seawall to address beach erosion at Wonnerup.

The outcomes of this study are now available for public comment and can be viewed by visiting either of the following websites:.

www.transport.wa.gov.au/portgeographe

www.transport.wa.gov.au/imarine/21678.asp

The outcome of this latest study and the response from the community will be the subject of scrutiny by the new intergovernment steering committee formed following input from the Department of Transport. 

Copies of the report and the synopsis on seagrass dynamics are also available in hard copy or CD at Busselton Library.

Alternatively the Department of Transport can be contacted on 09 9216 8018