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Topics > Coasts

Adelaide beach management review

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Review Lifecycle

  • January-March 2023 – Data and literature review
  • April-June 2023 – Community engagement
  • July-August 2023 – Shortlisting options
  • September-October 2023 – Community engagement (Underway now)
  • November-December 2023 – Review concludes


In April 2022 the South Australian Government announced that a comprehensive review of all available coastal (sand) management options is being undertaken to ensure a long-term solution is found which puts community and the environment at the core.

The 12-month review commenced in early 2023, following the establishment of an Independent Advisory Panel and appointment of community engagement specialists URPS and coastal engineering specialists Bluecoast Consulting Engineers.

URPS are undertaking a bespoke community engagement process to ensure extensive consultation and engagement is undertaken with a broad range of stakeholders and community members. Through this process, URPS will document respondents’ views on sand management options and on the impact of current sand management approaches including trucking and pipelines.

NSW-based firm Bluecoast Consulting Engineers were appointed following a select tender process targeting local, interstate and overseas experts in coastal management. A review of the tender submissions was undertaken by the Independent Advisory Panel, and after careful consideration the Panel recommended that Bluecoast be appointed. The Attorney-General subsequently agreed with the recommendation and Bluecoast was engaged to undertake the scientific review.

The scientific review by Bluecoast includes consideration of:

  1. How to manage sand on Adelaide’s beaches to achieve the following goals:
    1. Minimise disruption for all communities
    2. Avoid environmental harm; and
    3. Maximise sand staying on beaches.
  2. The Adelaide community’s views on sand management options and on the impact of the current sand management approaches including trucking and pipelines.
  3. Lessons from international examples of sand management on metropolitan beaches.
  4. What can be learned from the most up to date analysis of climate science about future management of Adelaide’s beaches.

The integrated review process timeline (noting the timeline is subject to change as the review progresses) is as follows:

  • January-March 2023 – Review of relevant data and literature on Adelaide coastal management. Meetings with key stakeholders to discuss coastal management approaches.
  • April 2023 - Commence six-week community engagement process on the list of approaches and values/goals of the review, including an online survey and an opportunity to make written submissions to the review.
  • May 2023 - Hold key stakeholders workshop.
  • June 2023 - Community Engagement closes (note: another stage of community consultation will occur following the shortlisting process).
  • June 2023 - Independent Advisory Panel receives community's written submissions on list and values and confirm Bluecoast's approach to multi-criteria analysis.
  • July-August 2023 - Assess approaches using multi-criteria analysis and prepare report on shortlisted approaches.
  • August 2023 – Independent Advisory Panel received Bluecoasts's advice on shortlisted approaches and endorse shortlist for community engagement.
  • September 2023 - Commence community engagement on the shortlisted approaches, including a key stakeholder workshop and an online survey
  • October 2023 - Community engagement closes.
  • November 2023 - Independent Advisory Panel receives community's written and verbal submissions on the shortlist.
  • November-December 2023 - Independent Advisory Panel provides advice for consideration by government via the Attorney-General.

Stage 1 Community Engagement Concluded

The Adelaide Beach Management Review is well underway with stage 1 consultation concluding on 9 June 2023.

The first stage of community engagement on the goals of the review and the long list of approaches commenced 5pm Friday 29 April 2023 and continued for 6 weeks through to 5pm Friday 9 June 2023.

On Monday 15 May, 2023 URPS facilitated a key stakeholder workshop to provide information on the review process and to gather feedback on what is important to stakeholders on how the coastline is managed. More than 60 representatives of key stakeholder groups including Surf Lifesaving Clubs, Dunes Groups, Tourism SA, Local Councils, Birdlife Australia, Kaurna and many more participated in discussion.

URPS and the review Project Manager have also met with various stakeholder groups and individuals over the course of the consultation period.

In addition and to promote broader participation in the review:

  • A postcard was delivered to residents and businesses along and near the coastline.
  • Signage was installed at key areas along the coast.
  • Advertisements were placed in the Saturday Advertiser newspaper.
  • The survey was promoted via the DEW ‘Our Coast’ e-news.
  • The survey also featured in the YourSay e-news.

URPS received approximately 600 survey responses, and more than 100 community members also made written submissions to URPS. The outcomes of this first stage of community engagement were reported to the Independent Advisory Panel (IAP) and assisted Bluecoast’s options analysis ahead of stage 2 consultation on the shortlisted options.

This was the first of two key stages in the review process at which community and stakeholders can provide input.

  • Stage 1 (complete): Seeking input about what outcomes and values are important to the community for how sand is managed on beaches, and to add any new approaches to an established draft list to be assessed by Bluecoast.
  • Stage 2 (scheduled to commence September 2023): Seeking community and stakeholder feedback on the shortlisted sand management approaches.

URPS will lead these engagement processes and prepare a report of the results of each stage of engagement. Reports will be provided to the IAP for review.

The Independent Advisory Panel

The Independent Advisory Panel was formed in November 2022 to oversee the Adelaide Beach Management Review. This was the first step in an important journey to find sustainable solutions to coastal erosion along Adelaide's metropolitan beaches.

The six Advisory Panel members were appointed by the Attorney-General as follows:

- Mark Searle, former chief executive officer for the City of Marion
- Kaurna representatives Les Wanganeen and Sarah Smith
- Professor Beverley Clarke, social science expert from Flinders University
- Professor Emeritus Nicholas Harvey, coastal science expert from the University of Adelaide
- Professor Emeritus Michael Young, environmental science expert from the University of Adelaide.

The Panel will receive submissions from community members and groups as part of the community engagement process and will also receive the findings of the independent scientific review. Any advice from the Panel in response to these outcomes will be made to government through the Attorney-General.

Additional information on the Panel is available via:

- New Independent Advisory Panel

- Independent Advisory Panel Terms of Reference

Fact Sheets

Additional detail relevant to the review is provided in the fact sheets below:

- Adelaide beach management review FAQs

- Independent Advisory Panel FAQs

To stay informed about the latest news and updates, please subscribe to the Our coasts e-news.

Externally sourced sand will continue to be brought into West Beach while the review is completed.

For further information on beach management, please see Managing Adelaide's Beaches and Adelaide Beach Works

Adelaide beach management review
Photo credit: South Australian Tourism Commission