Adelaide's Living Beaches

Adelaide's Living Beaches is a strategy for keeping sand on Adelaide's beaches and reducing the amount of sand carting required. In the long term, the strategy is expected to reduce the cost of managing Adelaide's coastline by about 20%.

The strategy works in five ways:

Continue beach replenishment
The existing program of beach replenishment places 160,000 cubic metres of sand each year at strategic locations on southern and central beaches. This maintains the sandy foreshore, builds up dune buffers, and protects coastal infrastructure.

Recycle sand more effectively using sand slurry pumping and pipelines
Existing sand supplies will be recycled more effectively using sand slurry pumping and pipelines. This will minimise the need for trucks to cart sand along beaches and suburban roads.

Add coarse sand from external sources
Coarser, more stable sand is added to the system from external sources such as Mount Compass. This tackles the ongoing loss of dune volume and beach width caused by sea level rise and other factors.

Build coastal structures in critical locations
Structures such as groynes and offshore breakwaters are being used in a few critical locations to slow the northerly drift of sand.

Integrate sand bypassing at harbours with beach management
Integrating sand bypassing requirements at harbours with the beach replenishment program results in more effective recycling of sand and reduced harbour management costs.

Benefits of the strategy

  1. Sand is maintained on Adelaide's metropolitan beaches for both recreation and protection purposes.
  2. The impact of ongoing replenishment work on beach users and coastal residents is significantly reduced.
  3. Existing sand supplies are recycled more efficiently.
  4. The strategy can be readily adapted to meet changing climatic conditions.

More information can be found on our reference material page.