Councils along the east coast of Australia are implementing policy that is destroying small towns. Councils are using exaggerated and unproven predictions of sea levels rising as the basis for implementing absurd contingency measures in order to combat global warming fears.

The implications of Council’s actions are far reaching, diminishing the value of properties, destroying small business and even leaving a number of locals homeless in certain areas.

Lake Cathie, a small coastal town situated 20 minutes south of Port Macquarie on the Mid North Coast of New South Wales, is just one coastal town feeling the repercussions of council policies.

These above images will be included into a short video with music. Utilising the affordance of music within this multimodal text will be designed to influence the way the user reads the text of the webpage, promoting a sensory experience. The video will focus on warmer tones to reflect the security, serenity and relaxed lifestyle that Lake Cathie offers.

Home to about 6,000 residents, Lake Cathie is a popular retirement and holiday destination. Only a 20 minute drive south of Port Macquarie, Lake Cathie offers a relaxed and calm environment. The waters of Lake Cathie, the pristine beaches of the Mid North Coast and the Hastings River are home to a diverse ecosystem.

This is because the scenic town is backed by forested mountainsides, peaceful waters of Lake Cathie and the Hastings River and offers a large coastline of pristine beaches. Lake Cathie supports a diverse ecosystem, being the desired habitat for a variety of threatened and endangered bird, mammal and plant species.

Whilst I was unable to attempt this technique myself, this is an example 360GoPro video to be incorporated in the multimodal webpage in support of policy change at Lake Cathie. It allows users change the view of the video in a complete circle, creating an interactive and immersive experience. The experience is capable in all browsers except for Safari who are working toward catering for this experience. It would show a video walking along the beach and road at Illaroo Road. Users would be able to move around the screen to view the houses and families waving out the front of their properties or move to view the beach and degraded sand dunes. The interaction with the haptic interface provokes an emotional experience of the user in order to establish a connection between the Lake Cathie area and the audience member.

The New South Wales State Government has paired with local councils such as the Port Macquarie Hastings Council in the case of Lake Cathie, to commission a study of the coastline. The result of this study is to develop and implement a Coastline Management Study, including the Coastline of the Lake Cathie area.

The study focussed on a number of solutions to address coastal hazards including a beach nourishment, a planned retreat and a 400 metre Seabee Wall along Illaroo Road.

The final recommendation made concluded that the best course of action was to implement the planned retreat which would see a minimum of 16 properties purchased at a substantially lesser price by the council over the next 50 years. Owners would then be forced to retreat from their properties as the land would now be owned by the council. The planned retreat policy was estimated to cost $11.44 million.

In comparison, building a Seabee Wall which was demonstrated to protect the houses for at least the next century, was estimated to cost $2.94 million.

The effects of this policy have already started to have impacts on Lake Cathie tourism, businesses and prices of property in the area. House prices dropped by 38% after council enacted its coastal policy.

Homeowners are distraught with the news. Property owners and twins, Robert and Raymond Dick, have been directly affected by this policy. The two men have travelled to Lake Cathie all their lives. Their greatest memories stem from the holidays in this area with their parents and five sisters. Robert and Raymond’s parents, Rex and Joan Dick, retired to Lake Cathie in 1985.

Since then, the men have bought their own families to the area to continue to make memories. With retirement in sight, the men bought their own houses in Lake Cathie. Their hard work and stability was ruined with the news of the policy, particularly for Raymond whose property is in the immediate list of houses to be affected by the policy.

Raymond said he is distraught by the news, as he would lose money and his retirement plan if he were to be forced to sell his property to the council.

A short interview with homeowners Robert and Raymond would be placed to automatically play here when a user scrolls down. It would provide insight to the viewers of the stress this policy has created over those in the area. This video will be focussed on the repercussions of the policy in order to allow users to link the issue facing Lake Cathie to other coastlines of Australia that are affected by similar policies.

How to help:

In order to change the policy, submissions must be made to the council.

We therefore ask for you to join our Facebook Group ‘SaveOurCoastlines’ and please invite your friends to the discussion.

Talk about the issue with your friends, family and colleagues. Use the hashtag #SaveOurCoastline on your social media accounts and link in this website.

If you own your own website or blog, it would help to post a link to this website there also!