Why are dunes important?
Simply speaking, they provide a buffer against storms, hold sand for beach resilience, create habitat and connect a green fringe along beaches. Amenity is another important value as well as a narrowing space between open beaches and what lies behind and beyond for coastal communities to take action and care of them.
Having walked and cared for Gold Coast’s dunes for almost a decade, I know more about my local dunes than most people. Blessed with an education in environmental science and community development, I can back up my views about the importance of dunes and community values, and don’t mind being called ‘Dune Girl’.
Though, unfortunately, not everyone appreciates my expert opinion – which can be taxing on my enthusiasm.
However, fortunately I am a strong advocate for what’s right.
Where does this leave me? Continue to share the beauty of dunes to overcome the beast.
You see I took these photos earlier this evening after an onsite meeting at Tugun to review the recent dune vandalism caused by my local council. It was disheartening to see a 4m wide sand pathway bulldozed through intact dunes – while the open ocean beach is only 10-15m east of the destruction. Rather than upload the horrible photos to prove such an idiotic decision, sharing the primary cruxes of the importance of dunes is more attractive and appealing.
Goats Foot is a pioneer dune runner that cross stitches across dunes to help trap sand – one of the “awesome foursome” dune species we are blessed to have to build Gold Coast’s beaches.
Every native dune species has a place and purpose to build beaches. Removing a bit here and there for an unsustainable pathway is not the right thing to do… sometimes it’s best to leave parts of our urbanised coast untouched.
The more we take, the less we will have. Every part of the beach is important, especially dunes.
If you would like to know more about the Tugun issue, please don’t hesitate in contacting me.