Lake Cathie artificial opening close but might be delayed due to dredging

Photo taken on June 7 at 8.30am.
Photo taken on June 7 at 8.30am.

With recent rain, the water level mark to trigger an artificial opening of Lake Cathie is near. 

However even if the water level does reach the required 1.6 metre mark, this does not mean the lake will be opened, as essential dredging works must take place first. 

According to current data collected under the NSW Coastal Data Network Program and managed by Office of Environment and Heritage (OEH), the current level of the lake is at 1.585 as of 6am on June 7.  At 5pm on Wednesday, June 6 the level was at 1.592 metres. 

Dredging works at the Lake Cathie reserve will take priority over opening the lake, even if the water height reaches 1.6 metres. 

Port Macquarie-Hastings Council acting director Dan Croft said dredging while the lake is closed will allow the sand to settle and replenish the foreshore. 

“The effectiveness and safety of the dredging work would be compromised if the lake were open and exposed to tides,” he said. 

“Dredging is optimised when there is no influence of tidal forces that can move and wash away sand in the lake.

“This cannot be achieved if the lake is opened to the ocean.”

Mr Croft said any future opening of the lake would be considered once the lake reaches 1.6 metres. 

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