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2017 Coastal Award winners announced

The Coastal Awards celebrate the important achievements of groups and individuals involved in protecting and managing Western Australia’s coast and marine environment.

Awards were presented at a ceremony today across seven categories including coastal champion, community group effort, local government award, on-ground coastal management, coastal planning, coastal development/design/tourism initiative, and industry and community collaboration.

Nominations were received from community groups, local and State government agencies, businesses, schools and individuals who demonstrated success in one or more categories.

Dr Marjorie Apthorpe was awarded ‘Coastal Champion’ in recognition of her long-standing role as founder, former chairperson and co-ordinator of the Friends of North Ocean Reef-Iluka Foreshore.

Award recipients

Coastal Champion Award

Award winner: Dr Marjorie Apthorpe – Friends of North Ocean Reef-Iluka Foreshore

In recognition of her role as founder, former chairperson and co-ordinator of the Friends of North Ocean Reef-Iluka Foreshore

As a local resident of the City of Joondalup with a passion for the coastal environment, Dr Marjorie Apthorpe founded the Friends of North Ocean Reef-Iluka Foreshore in 2005. She co-ordinated volunteers in litter removal, hand weeding and revegetation for more than 10 years, and was the driving force behind the rehabilitation of more than 30 hectares of weed-infested coastal foreshore reserve and bushland in Bush Forever Site 325. Dr Apthorpe is a strong advocate of non-herbicide weeding and insisted all weeding be undertaken by hand.

During her time as Chairperson of the Friends of North Ocean Reef-Iluka Foreshore, Dr Apthorpe was successful in raising more than $200,000 in grants and recruiting more than 70 volunteers. She has engaged with local government, school groups, church groups, corporate groups, TAFE, university students, girl guides and scouts to raise awareness of coastal issues; and has mentored and supported many similarly minded individuals over the past decade.

Dr Apthorpe resigned as Chairperson of the Friends of North Ocean Reef-Iluka Foreshore in August 2016 when she moved to New South Wales.

Special commendation: South West and Peel Coastal Management Group (CoastSWaP)

In recognition of providing leadership in addressing coastal management issues in the South-West

Since 1990 CoastSWaP has provided a regional leadership and co-ordination role in the South-West from Mandurah to Walpole. Providing a forum to share information and strengthen relationships, CoastSWaP has brought together coastal land managers and community representatives to combine resources and work collaboratively to address priority coastal management issues in the South-West.

Community Group Award

Award winner: South West and Peel Coastal Management Group (CoastSWaP)

In recognition of work in assisting local coastal managers between Mandurah and Walpole with priority coastal management issues

CoastSWaP has been helping local coastal managers share information and overcome common coastal management problems throughout the South-West region of Western Australia since 1990.

Over the past four years, CoastSWaP has co-ordinated 14 coastal stakeholder forums between Mandurah and Walpole, supported by more than 150 key stakeholders, to identify coastal management actions, issues and priorities. Information from the forums was developed into a series of 10 coastal management case studies.

CoastSWaP has delivered a wide range of positive outcomes that continue to improve the condition of coastal environments and assist stakeholders to work more efficiently and collaboratively to address priority coastal management issues in the region.

Local Government Award

Award winner: City of Joondalup

In recognition of raising community awareness of future risks associated with coastal inundation and erosion to the City of Joondalup’s coastline

The City of Joondalup has delivered a Coastal Adaptation Planning and Implementation project to develop a long-term approach for coastal erosion and inundation. Through this project, the City has implemented an innovative information and stakeholder engagement campaign to increase knowledge and understanding of coastal hazard risks within the local community.

Special commendation: City of Cockburn

In recognition of the Coogee Maritime Trail – a sustainable eco-tourism initiative that provides opportunities for community education and marine archaeological training

In February 2017, the City of Cockburn opened a land and underwater-based dive and snorkel trail to enhance the local marine habitat and provide educational and sustainable eco-tourism opportunities in the area. The Coogee Maritime Trail centres around shore-based shipwreck The Omeo and includes an artificial reef structure. The trail provides habitat for marine species and a unique dive and snorkel experience, as well as opportunities for community education and marine archaeological training. The collaborative project also involved the WA Maritime Museum, Perth NRM and Murdoch University divers.

On-Ground Coastal Management Award

Award winner: Batavia Coast Maritime Institute

In recognition of work protecting and restoring native flora and habitat at the Houtman Abrolhos Islands

The Batavia Coast Maritime Institute has been working to protect and restore native flora and habitat at the Houtman Abrolhos Islands. The Institute has managed more than 600 community volunteers, stakeholders and students who have contributed more than 13,500 hours of on-ground restoration projects across 32 remote islands. Works have included installing erosion control matting, mangrove mapping and seedling germination, revegetation, weed removal, marine debris removal, a mouse eradication program, and seabird and habitat monitoring.

Special commendation: Shire of Northampton

In recognition of work protecting the coastal environment at Lucky Bay

The Shire of Northampton’s coastal nodes project at Lucky Bay, 40 kilometres south of Kalbarri has provided formal camping areas at strategic coastal nodes, which has helped reduce anti-social behaviour and damage to the coastal environment from recreational activities such as camping, quad and trail-bike riding and four-wheel driving. An on-site caretaker now manages activities and facilities in the area.

Coastal Planning Award

Award winner Cockburn Sound Coastal Alliance

In recognition of the Cockburn Sound Coastal Vulnerability and Flexible Adaptation Pathways project

The Cockburn Sound Coastal Alliance was formed in 2011 to combat common problems across jurisdictional boundaries such as coastal erosion and inundation. It provides information to local authorities and communities about coastal hazards, values at risk and adaptation measures.

The Coastal Vulnerability and Flexible Adaptation Pathways project supports the management of Owen Anchorage and Cockburn Sound – a 45 kilometre-long stretch of coastline subject to increasing pressure from urban and industrial development, population growth and coastal inundation and erosion.

The alliance includes the cities of Cockburn, Fremantle, Kwinana and Rockingham and Perth NRM with support from the departments of Transport; Planning, Lands and Heritage; and Environment and Regulation; the Cockburn Sound Management Council; and the federal Department of Defence.

Special commendation: South West Catchments Council

In recognition of the strategic regional coastal plan for managing coastal areas between Binningup and Walpole

Since 2001 the South West Catchments Council has worked in partnership with the community to ensure that the coast is managed for the benefit of current and future generations.

In 2014, the Council developed a dynamic regional strategic coastal action plan for managing on-ground works and other activities along the coast between Binningup and Walpole.

The plan operates across different land tenures, jurisdictions and land management responsibilities involving extensive stakeholder and community input to achieve integrated coastal zone management.

Coastal Development/Design/Tourism Initiative Award

Special commendation: City of Karratha

In recognition of the foreshore works at the Karratha Searipple Precinct, Point Samson and Dampier

The City of Karratha has designed and implemented coastal foreshore enhancement programs at the Karratha Searipple Precinct and Point Samson and Dampier foreshores, which have contributed to the conservation and sustainable use of the coast in these areas.

The foreshore works have included rehabilitation of damaged dune systems and management of unrestricted access and unregulated off-road vehicle damage. Improved amenities and walkways enable visitors to enjoy the scenic vistas while protecting dune vegetation.

Industry and Community Collaboration Award

Woodside Energy/Conservation Volunteers Australia

In recognition of the Woodside Coastal Guardians program

Since 2011 Woodside Energy and Conservation Volunteers Australia have worked collaboratively to enable local communities to achieve priority conservation objectives along the State’s coastline.

Woodside Coastal Guardians is a unique program that initiates strong industry partnerships to help build the capacity of regional bodies and community and coast care groups to undertake a range of volunteer coastline works. The program provides the groups with co-ordinated and well managed teams of trained volunteers.

Coastal Guardians has helped boost the capacity of 38 coastal land care managers to contribute more than 900 days of various volunteer works. More than 44,500 volunteer hours have been dedicated to conservation activities including removal of 320,000m2 of weeds and 12,000 kilograms of marine debris, planting of 67,000 stems and construction of more than four kilometres of fence line to protect dune systems.

Source: Government of Western Australia.