Byron Shire Council staff are monitoring water levels in Belongil Creek with the entrance to the creek now closed after the recent large seas.
Belongil Creek is an ICOLL, an intermittent closed and open lagoon that opens and closes to the ocean.
Belongil Creek has been flowing into the ocean for approximately 12 months, but the big swell in late July resulted in a build-up of sand across the mouth of the creek and it is now closed.
Council has received calls from people who are concerned about the build-up of water as a result of the creek closing and while Council staff are monitoring the levels, there are no immediate plans to open the creek.
Phil Holloway, Director Infrastructure Services, said there is, understandably, a high level of anxiety in the community about the potential for flooding after the weather event in March this year.
“ICOLLs like Belongil Creek are complex environmental systems and there are strict NSW Government regulations relating to any artificial opening because of the potential impact on fish and other marine creatures,” he said.
“Council only has a licence from the NSW Government to open Belongil Creek for flood mitigation and to do this there are other factors that need to be taken into account such as forecast rain, and ocean conditions,” Mr Holloway said.
“Staff are closely monitoring the situation at Belongil and water levels are stable and there is no case to open the creek artificially.
“We are keeping a close eye on the situation and should the situation change, or if heavy rain is forecast, things will be reassessed,” Mr Holloway said.