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Buffalo Beach Coastal Erosion Management Strategy. Part I Strategy

Report: TR 2006/19
Author: Beca Carter Hollings & Ferner Ltd., in association with Economos Ltd. and Covec


Environment Waikato (EW) and Thames Coromandel District Council (TCDC) have identified coastal erosion as being a significant hazard risk to Coromandel properties. Projected sea level rise over the next 100 years is estimated to lead to another 15-20 metres of erosion along beaches on the eastern Coromandel, putting approximately 920 properties at risk.

EW and TCDC are working together to address the hazard, beginning with two priority sites – Buffalo and eastern Cooks Beach. The objective was to identify issues and options at the sites and select the most technically feasible and cost effective coastal erosion mitigation option. For the first time, economic analyses were used to estimated the costs and benefits of the different management options to property owners and the wider community over 50 years time. Environmental costs and benefits such as changes in the natural character of the beach as well as engineering costs as a result of a specific option were quantified and included in the assessment.

The strategy is being used as part of a wider consultation programme with the community and other stakeholders to ultimately select a preferred coastal erosion strategy for Buffalo Beach that promotes sustainable management of the coastal area.

Part I of the Coastal Erosion Management Strategy (CEMS) should be read in conjunction with Part II – Technical Appendices to provide further details of CEMS development (Technical Report 2006/20).

Buffalo Beach Coastal Erosion Management Strategy. Part I Strategy
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Table of Contents

1 Introduction and Background to Project 1
1.1 Assumptions and Limitations of Study 2
2 Methodology 2
3 Description of Buffalo Beach 4
4 Is there a Coastal Hazard at Buffalo Beach? 6
4.1 Natural Erosion Mechanism 6
4.2 What is at Risk? 7
4.3 Past Response to Coastal Erosion 8
5 Strategy Vision and Objectives 9
6 How were Options Screened? 10
7 What Options were Assessed? 10
8 How were Social, Environmental and Economic Impacts Evaluated? 13
9 How did the Options Stack Up? 16
10 Conclusions and Action Plan 27