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Lake Illawarra Foreshores

Lake Illawarra is a 34 square kilometre of water which has many problems. One problem which the Lake Illawarra Authority (LIA) seems reluctant to address is the sections of foreshore that have circulation and natural cleaning problems.

There are areas of the lake foreshore which have had so called improvements. They have elevated the shoreline level and put loose rock walls in place. In some cases this looks good but the trouble is they don’t work in favor of the lake.

Slow tapering shorelines work with tides and winds. Weed and other floating matter drifts to the shore with the help from the tides and winds. When the tide rises, this gives the matter the chance to wash up the shore; the tide drops and leaves the matter to dry out.

This is a natural way of cleaning the water and protecting the shore, what happens is the weed and matter dries which reduces decaying (which creates bad smells). The other advantage is that the weed creates a mat so it protects the shore line and reduces the chances of erosion during rainy periods. Nature figured this out, we understand the action, but the LIA remain ignorant to the fact and are happy for the stench to remain at walled areas.

One area where you can see both types of shore (rock wall and tapered shore) is at the eastern side of Boonera Point ( Mt. Warrigal ). These areas are in close proximity to each other.

   Tapered shoreline at Mt. Warrigal . Note clear water, clean dry sand and dry weed

Left edge of photo is rocky wall. Note the rotting weed in the water which can not dry out