The dune areas at both Umina and Ocean Beach are an absolute disgrace and an ugly eyesore.
Under the pretence of stopping erosion, they are protected with gusto, being full of lantana, bitou bush and years of garden waste.
The erosion is happening from underneath the root system, losing more and more sand every high tide.
Council has only contributed to the problem by pushing sand from the beach to the dune using an excavator dropping the sand level as they go and losing the sand the next high tide.
The council seem to have no answers.
Mayor Jane Smith thinks building fences, planting new garden beds, mulching and top soils is the answer.
It makes you wonder if she has ever been to Ocean Beach to take a look at what’s happening.
Wind erosion is not the problem here.
It’s the high tide combined with big swells.
This is not a new problem either.
I have a photo from the 1950s showing the problem then.
I would say the issue is worse now and won’t improve by planting lovely Aussie Indigenous species on what’s left of the dune.
The entire beach needs renourishment.
This alone won’t solve the problem.
The correct advice from experts in this field is paramount.
This means money. Yes, money.
Council must have a will to fix this, or we will lose our beach like Old Bar on the Mid-North Coast.
With pebbles and rocks only on the beach, property prices could fall, tourism could slow, local jobs could disappear, and a beautiful asset could be lost.
Is this the future we can expect?
We have the most spectacular ocean views, better than most.
Our beach is a treasured asset used by locals and shared with tourists.
Childhood lifetime memories are forged at our beach.
We need our beach as it has been through many generations.
We must save it as our future may depend on it.
Email, 31 Jan 2018
Brian Lewis, Umina Beach