The City of Rockingham has moved to alleviate concerns surrounding the water quality of the Pond near Tern Bank in Safety Bay.
The Pond is a small area of water which was formed about 10 years ago as part of the natural ocean processes which deposited sand along the foreshore opposite Waimea Road, creating Tern Bank. With its protected aspect the Pond is popular for kite surfing and wind surfing.
The ocean processes which created Tern Bank and the Pond continue to impact the coastline, depositing more sand and gradually infilling the Pond
City of Rockingham Mayor Barry Sammels said if the sand continued to deposit without intervention the Pond could eventually form part of the mainland.
“In recent years the City has removed sand from the navigation channel that services the nearby Bent Street Boat Ramp in order to maintain it as a viable asset to the community,” Mayor Sammels said.
“While the nature of this work can be substantial, it has little or no impact on water quality within the Pond.
“Stormwater outlets in the area have minimal impact on water quality in the Pond, as two of the outlets drain stormwater only from Safety Bay Road while a third extends only to Rae Road. The total catchment of these drains is relatively small so these outlets do not contribute significantly to nutrient loads.
“This has been supported by evidence from water quality assessments that have found water quality, algae, wrack and sea grass condition are due to natural processes.”
While there have been calls for opening a channel to the north of Tern Bank to flush the Pond, there are doubts about whether it would improve the Pond’s condition or whether it would be approved by the Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions.
A new channel would be a significant undertaking, both in terms of the initial work to create it, and the maintenance required to keep it open due to the dynamic and continual ocean processes impacting the shore at that location.