Goolwa in South Australia has won the Keep Australia Beautiful, Australian Clean Beaches Awards 2012. The announcement was made to the Goolwa Tidy Towns Group, Alexandrina Council and Goolwa Coastcare on 6 December at the Goolwa Hotel by KESAB environmental solutions Executive Director, John Phillips OAM.
Mr Phillips said “Goolwa is a premier beach in South Australia; enjoyed by residents and tourists all year round. Considerable efforts have been put in place to ensure that it is litter free, energy and water efficient and that the coastal dune system is conserved. The Goolwa Coastcare group supported by the community, the Alexandrina Council and the schools have been crucial in protecting the fragile dune systems. The beach has been further enhanced with the addition of the Goolwa Surf Life Saving Club and we congratulate the entire Goolwa community for their role in protecting the coastal environment, whilst maintaining a high level of public use and amenity.”
The Clean Beaches program award communities who actively work for a cleaner, more sustainable coastal environment. Awards are presented to local councils, volunteers, surf lifesaving clubs and other community groups who implement initiatives that care for dunes, protect habitats, educate the community, reduce litter and support tourism.
According to David Moy, one of the Clean Beaches national judges, “the Keep Australia Beautiful Beaches Awards are among the most important national awards. As an island continent with its existing population distribution, tourist attractions and ‘beach’ culture, Australia must protect and enhance its shoreline and adjacent communities. This must be seen as of increasing importance with climate change impacts likely to increase and threaten many kilometres of our shoreline.
“The Clean Beaches Award highlights the effort and commitment of community, business and government partnerships in protecting and enhancing our coastal environment and communities.”
Peter McLean, National Executive Officer of Keep Australia Beautiful said “It is a great achievement for any beach to be recognised at a Regional and State level in the Clean Beach Awards. The beach is central to the life of so many Australians and with so much local passionate community involvement, so of course competition is fierce. This local passion to protect and enhance that which is irreplaceable is what keeps our coastline in safe hands.”
The success of the local community of Goolwa is due to their great strides made in the economy of the use of water, and they are proud of the collective achievements of Council, sporting clubs, schools, private gardens and homes. Within one year their council also collected 4436 tonnes of green waste, 78 tonnes of tree stumps and 2145 tonnes of tree pruning's, that were converted to 2582 tonnes of compost.
The beaches follow a national judging criteria which include community action and partnerships, litter prevention, resource recovery and waste management, environmental innovation and protection, water conservation, energy innovation, heritage and culture, and a youth participation and engagement award which are all individually given scores out of 100.
Beaches across Australia were put under the microscope over the last few months as part of the Clean Beaches awards. Goolwa was judged against four other finalists around the country which included Maggies Beach Northern Rivers in New South Wales, Bellerive Beach Tasmania, Frankston Foreshore Victoria and Jurien Bay in Western Australia.