News & Insights

Cardno Coastal Monitoring for Western Australia's iconic beaches

For over 35 years, Cardno has been undertaking coastal monitoring programs for our coastlines in Australia.

As a nation renowned for it's breathtaking beaches, which stretch over 50,000 kilometres, it's crucial to collect quality data around coastal processes. This data informs governments around decisions to manage our coastline, as sea levels continue to rise in the future.

In December 2019, our Western Australian Coastal team was awarded the Port, Leighton and Mosman Coastal Monitoring Program contract with the local government councils, City of Fremantle and Town of Mosman Park in WA.

For three years, the team will provide services such as photo monitoring, beach profiling, sediment sampling, metocean data collection, coastal data analysis and reporting.

The team is also providing similar services to the City of Cockburn and the Town of Cottesloe, who Cardno has been working with for over five years and has recently been awarded another monitoring contract into the future.

Coastal and Marine Section Lead, Daniel Strickland, says councils will benefit from these programs by having more up-to-date and accurate information about their coastline's response to coastal processes, given the significant social and economic value that the beaches generate.

"A long-term benefit for communities is better use of public funding, which will be allocated in an optimal way, for larger-scale, long-term coastal management," Daniel said.

"Ultimately, the aim is to benefit the community by maintaining our coastal lifestyle as we see environmental conditions change."

Such frequent monitoring of our coastline, including hourly photographs, biannual surveying and annual analysis and reporting, has given Cardno coastal experts a deeper understanding of our coastline's behavior.

"This knowledge is not only applicable to the beaches we monitor, but relevant to the whole Perth Metropolitan coastline, which is shaped by consistent coastal processes," Daniel said.

"The range of locations we monitor has demonstrated how beaches are connected and are responding to climate change in similar ways."

Since commencing the coastal monitoring program with the Town of Cottesloe in 2015, there has been some interesting observations, including the shoreline position is highly valuable across seasons and what is eroded in one season, generally returns in the next.

Some coastlines are also more vulnerable to storms in late summer to early winter, rather than the major storms Perth experiences in mid to late winter.

"This is because the shoreline has evolved during early winter and is more resilient to storm impacts, compared to the end of the summer when some beaches are thinner and more exposed," Daniel said.

Cardno uses strategies such as placing monitoring equipment on existing infrastructure, using rechargeable batteries and solar panels, and servicing its monitoring equipment at different coastal locations at the same time to avoid multiple trips by vehicle, to keep our programs sustainable as we work towards support a low carbon economy.

Click here to learn more about our coastal services. 

For more information

Daniel Strickland
Section Lead - Coastal and Marine
Phone: +61 8 6461 0703

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