Lake entrance opening policies
Council has the responsibility for the management of most entrances to coastal lakes in Eurobodalla Shire. Coastal lakes and estuaries are diverse, complex ecosystems and are well adapted to the environment they are in. This means they are constantly adapting and stabilizing, whether they are opened or closed.
Most of Eurobodalla's coastal lakes are perched behind a barrier of sand between the lake and the ocean. These barriers can be breached naturally during heavy rainfall or heavy seas, however, prior to this occurring, water builds up behind the barriers, which can flood roads, stormwater systems and private properties.
Council recognises that intermittently closed or opened coastal lakes and lagoons (sometimes referred to with the acronym ICOLLS) are governed by natural process and should be maintained with respect to that natural process unless assets are at risk of being flooded.
- Find out more about estuary water quality monitoring.
- Find out more about opening lakes and lagoons, including commonly raised questions about odours, vegetation and recreation in and around ICOLLS.
Typically, council does not open the entrance to a lake, creek or closed estuary because there are many reasons why artificial openings are not effective or sustainable.
'Entrance management' refers to the opening of lakes when water levels begin to cause flooding. Council aims to maintain sand barriers and coastal lakes in as close to a natural condition as possible. In doing so, managing lake entrances is a balance between maintaining natural process and preventing the flooding of assets (ie, private property etc,).
Please note: As of 1 March 2022, the 45 existing State Environmental Planning Policies (SEPPs) have been consolidated into 11 policies.
Any references on this page to any of the amended SEPPs outlined on the Department of Planning and Environment's website should be replaced with the new applicable consolidated policy.
Lake entrance opening levels
|Lake||Trigger level - flooding||Trigger level - time||Notes|
|Durras||1.8||1.7 for 3 months||Levels on MHL|
|Surfside||1.5||N/A||When sand reaches top of road culvert|
|Joes||1.4||1.2 to 1.4 if heavy rain predicted||Gauge on cycle path bridge|
|Short Beach||1.3||1.0 to 1.3 if heavy rain predicted||Generally breaks out naturally|
|Wimbie||2.0||1.8 to 2.0 if heavy rain predicted||Gauge on bridge at bottom of Highview Street|
|Coila||2.0||+1.8 for three months||
Levels on MHL|
Measure at entrance
|Tuross||2.0||0.8 for > 2 weeks||Levels on MHL|
|Kianga||2.0||1.8 for > 2 weeks||Gauge on bridge|
|Little||2.2||N/A||No gauge - use bottom course of bricks on pump station|
|Nangudga||1.3||N/A||Level will need renewal following construction of new bridge|
For more information, contact Council's Coastal Management Planner, Cameron Whiting:
- T: 02 4474 1000
- E: Council@esc.nsw.gov.au