Wanted: communities to capture king tides

COASTAL residents are being encouraged to photograph their local king tide this Friday to highlight the impacts of rising sea levels as part of the Witness King Tides project.

Green Cross Australia is encouraging coastal communities to take photos during the upcoming king tides season for Witness King Tides – an initiative that will help Australians understand the impacts of sea level rise in their local area.

And local members of the Nature Coast Marine Group are planning on being out and about and the last king tide that happened at night seeing water lapping up around the Narooma wharf and boardwalk.

The next king tides at around 2 metres on the Eurobodalla coast are 8.40am tomorrow, 9.30am on Friday when the tide should be highest and 10.20am on Saturday. There will be a delay in the estuaries.

Green Cross Australia chief executive Mara Bún said sharing photos allowed people to visualise how flooding from rising sea levels will impact beaches, coastal areas and shoreline communities in the future.

“Witness King Tides will help us to identify and understand the impacts of rising sea levels on our beaches, coastal areas and shoreline communities,” Ms Bún said.

“Through gathering and sharing visual data, we raise awareness around Australia and can adapt for the future.

“Around 85 per cent of New South Wales’ population lives within 50km of the coast, so we are encouraging as many residents as possible to become aware of what to expect in future.

“We’re excited to be rolling this campaign out around the whole of Australia this year, with the Queensland pilot program a great success during the last summer king tides.”

The Witness King Tides campaign asks coastal communities around Australia to submit images of king tides to raise awareness of the threats posed by climate change and rising sea levels.

Project partners include CSIRO, Australian Coastal Society, National Climate Change Adaptation Research Facility and the Bleach Festival.

The NSW Office of Environment and Heritage, the Tasmanian Climate Change Office and numerous coastal and estuarine councils around Australia fund the project. 

Although king tides are naturally occurring and not a result of climate change, the bi-annual occurrence provides an insight into the potential impacts of rising sea levels to the Australian coastline.

To get involved go to www.witnesskingtides.org

Message from Nature Coast Marine Group:

If you intend to Witness the King Tide the highest tide is predicted for Friday 14th at about 9.30 am. (The actual height will depend on the weather - higher if there is low pressure and strong onshore winds, lower if there is a high pressure system). If you can't do Friday try Saturday at 10.26am.

On the open coast this will be the right time but delays occur in inlets and bays. For example, according to the tide chart, there is a delay for high tides of 54 minutes at the Narooma Bridge (fishers say 30 minutes), 45 minutes at Bermagui Bridge and Moruya, and 15 minutes at Clyde River Bridge.

Work out when to go?The best time to take photos is at the peak of the tide when the water level is at its highest. This time varies both along the coast and within the estuaries away from the coast.

What shots to take?Capture photos of local coastal areas that are subject to flooding or erosion. Take images where the impact of the tide can be gauged against familiar landmarks like buildings, jetties, bridges, roads, sea walls, shorelines, beach infrastructure or estuary shorelines.

If you can, take contrasting 'before and after' shots which help to show the average water level in the same location.

Be safeUse good judgement when you are taking your photos. Stay away from dangerous situations particularly in stormy conditions and avoid taking risks.

Make a day of itTake your family and friends with you and participate together. Why not enjoy the event together and witness the future. If you are keen to coordinate a group of people, get in touch and we can help you. Check out these Tide Tracking activity

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