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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.

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,).

Lake entrance opening levels

All levels in metres AHD
LakeTrigger level - floodingTrigger level - timeNotes
Durras1.81.7 for 3 monthsLevels on MHL
Surfside1.5 When sand reaches top of road culvert
Joes1.41.2 to 1.4 if heavy rain predictedGauge on cycle path bridge
Short Beach1.31.0 to 1.3 if heavy rain predictedGenerally breaks out naturally
Wimbie2.01.8 to 2.0 if heavy rain predictedGauge on bridge at bottom of Highview Street
Coila2.0+1.8 for three monthsLevels on MHL
Measure at entrance
Tuross2.00.8 for > 2 weeksLevels on MHL
Kianga2.01.8 for > 2 weeksGauge on bridge
Little2.2N/ANo gauge - use bottom course of bricks on pump station
BullengellaNo intervention policy No intervention policy
Nangudga1.3N/ALevel will need renewal following construction of new bridge

Contact us

For more information, contact Council's Coast and Flood Management Planner on: