Camp Creek Rehabilitation
CAMP CREEK STUDY
The Waratah-Wynyard Council has released the Camp Creek Remediation and Options Study (available below).
Tasmanian firm Entura was engaged to undertake the study late last year as outlined in Council’s Annual Plan and Budget Estimates 2012/2013.
Entura has now come back to Council with five remediation options for Camp Creek, which include everything from the status quo to reinstatement of the original channel course of the creek.
Council is not looking to lock in any of these options as yet, but rather to further consult with the community on the best solution, undertake further required engineering and environmental assessments and then to consider its ability to fund any of the options.”
The report has identified that there is no “quick fix” to the problems with Camp Creek, but any rehabilitation would be worth the wait.
Before undertaking any of the options identified there is a requirement to undertake further environmental and engineering studies to inform design and environmental management plans for assessment and approval by the relevant authorities. These further studies and works are reliant on funding by Council as part of budget deliberations for the 2013-2014 financial year.
Council recognises the importance of working with key stakeholders to identify the best solution for Camp Creek to maximise not only any potential environmental benefits, but also to ensure there are opportunities presented to affected parties such as the Wynyard Yacht Club, nearby businesses, residents and the wider community. Council has therefore resolved to form the "Camp Creek and Surrounds Advisory Group" (detailed below) to help disseminate information and provide community feedback on the remediation options detailed above.
The five options presented to Council (which are also summarised in the Camp Creek Fact Sheet below) from the report are as follows:
- Do nothing: If nothing is done sediment will continue to accumulate. This option probably has no immediate or medium term consequences for the wider ecology of the creek as the main channel will continue to allow fish to migrate to and from the ocean and the estuary has no impact on the creek above the high tide mark. However, it is highly likely that aesthetic and public amenity of the area will continue to decline.
- Sediment dredging: Without further measures, this is a short term solution to remove some of the fine sediment; however, sediment will continue to deposit.
- Weir removal: This option is also probably unlikely to greatly improve sediment flushing because removal of the weir alone will not increase the stream slope enough to create flow conditions through the reach that will flush sediments. To increase slope it would be necessary to remove a portion of the bedrock beneath the weir; however, it is understood that services occur beneath the weir which may make this option prohibitively expensive.
- Channel narrowing: The permanent basins that occur have slowed water velocity through the estuary, greatly reducing the channels ability to transport sediment out. Thus constricting the channel would increase velocity and aide sediment flushing. This option would require methods to stabilise newly formed creek banks, earth works to fill in behind them and commitment to a landscaping program.
- Channel narrowing and sediment dredging: This option is the same as above except that sediment is manually removed from the constricted channel rather than waiting for flow events to achieve this over time.
• Reinstatement of the original channel course: For this option the present headland would be cut through to reinstate the original channel course and the existing weir would be blocked off. The new channel would be excavated to a depth to increase slope and thus improve flushing of fine sediment from the basins.
Tasmanian firm Entura begun site investigations on the Camp Creek Ecological/Hydrological Study as outlined in Council’s Annual Plan and Budget Estimates 2012/2013 in late December 2012.
The investigations provided Council with a number of options to address issues with silt and sediment.
Entura looked at a number of issues to do with the ecology, water quality and geomorphology of Camp Creek and the assessment will provide a discussion of land use issues in the upper catchment as part of the study.
This work included providing a summary of engineering options for weir modification and channel alterations such as constriction to increase flushing of fine sediments and other associated infrastructure modifications will also be provided to Council for consideration.”
While the focus of the study was on the section of Camp Creek from the Inglis River to the upstream extension of the pool behind the weir, it also looked at the upper catchments.
This study was about ensuring Council had the best information available about anything that contributes to sediment, water quality and the ecological condition of Camp Creek.
The work also included an assessment of the invertebrate and fish community to provide information on the ecological condition and water quality within the creek.
Ppreliminary studies found a number of species present, which is a positive sign in regards to water quality.