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Estuary Sedimentation Management

Estuary Sedimentation Management

CHC is committed to the sustainable management and conservation of the harbour, estuary, and local environment and continues to work with harbour users and statutory authorities to ensure that the balance between the use of the estuary and its environment is maintained. 

The plan to develop and agree a ‘Sustainable Maintenance Dredging Management Plan’ for the Medina Estuary was first proposed in CHC’s Strategic Framework of 2011 and has been reiterated in CHC’s current Strategic Plan 2016-21.

CHC's aim is to develop a sustainable and cost-efficient Maintenance Dredging Management Plan in partnership with stakeholders, which is underpinned by long-term monitoring and promotes alternative dredging methods. Under the proposed Plan, maintenance dredging activities would be coordinated to maintain, as far as is possible, a sustainable balance between navigational requirements, harbour improvements, and natural estuarial features. The Plan could bring considerable benefits to stakeholders, including cost efficiencies through the roll-out of partnership surveying and a CHC-facilitated consenting process, as well as benefits to the environment with a review of dredging methods utilised.

The Commission is now in a good position to start developing a Maintenance Dredging Management Plan as a result of the increased data and detailed information available in reports compiled by estuarine sedimentation consultant Dr Rob Nunny of Ambios Environmental Consultants Ltd. Dr Nunny’s first report of May 2016, ‘Medina Estuary Sedimentary Processes’ provided a conceptual understanding of the harbour both historically and up to the present day.

A second report, ‘Sediment Management in the Medina Estuary - Monitoring Results 2016’, analyses a year’s worth of robust data collection, including multi-beam surveys of the whole harbour, which give a 3D image of the estuarine basin. This report had the objectives of identifying the different sediment sources and energy processes that produce dispersion of mud and sand through the estuary, mapping local variability in estuary bed erosion and accumulation, and quantifying sediment flux over time throughout the estuary.

Dredging stakeholders attended a meeting in 2017 and since then, work has concentrated on gathering further information about sediment movement in the estuary and how this could be managed more effectively. 

Documents relating to Medina Estuary sedimentation management:
Summary of the draft report on Sustainable Sediment Management in the Medina Estuary (CHC) published May 2018
• Draft report on “SUSTAINABLE SEDIMENTATION MANAGEMENT IN THE MEDINA ESTUARY: A FORWARD LOOK AT MAINTENANCE DREDGING NEEDS, PRACTICES AND MANAGEMENT – March 2018” (CHC/Dr R Nunny) published May 2018
Project summary - Estuary Sedimentation Management & Development of a Maintenance Dredging Management Plan (CHC) published 31/05/2017
• Sediment Management in the Medina Estuary - Monitoring Results 2016 (Dr R Nunny) published 30/03/2017
Sedimentary Processes in the Medina Estuary May 2016 (Dr R Nunny)
Appendices to Sedimentary Processes in the Medina Estuary (Dr R Nunny)
Sedimentation Management Monitoring Set-up February 2016 (Dr R Nunny)


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