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Shoreline Management

2015-2019 Update of the  Shoreline Management Plan

Welcome to the web page about the 2015-2019 work which has resulted in updates to the Shoreline Management Plan for the Lake Huron shoreline within Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority's area.

We would like to thank all the members of the public - including shoreline residents and industry representatives as well as municipalities - for their contributions to this plan over more than four years. 

Summary of 2019 Changes to the Draft Proposed Shoreline Management Plan (2018)

The following is the summary of 2019 changes to the Draft Proposed Shoreline Management Plan (2018):

  • Page 6 - Revised wording to better reflect the Provincial Policy Statement

Appendix F, Development Guidelines - Notes to the Shoreline Development Setbacks

  • Additional note to allow for permitting of shore protection structures when protecting residences and infrastructure existing below the top of the bluff 

Appendix F, Development Guidelines - Shoreline Protection

  • Additional wording to permit the repair and maintenance of existing groyne structures
  • Clarified wording for coastal engineering review for shoreline protection structures
  • Additional wording to permit re-use of existing shoreline protection components (e.g., armourstone, or gabion stone)

Appendix F, Development Guidelines - Dynamic Beach

  • Revised reconstruction and vacant lot setbacks for dynamic beach areas

The updated, approved Shoreline Management Plan (2019) is posted below:

Shoreline Management Plan - Approved 2019

Below is the link to the approved Shoreline Management Plan (SMP) for the Lake Huron shoreline of the Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority (ABCA) area - with the exception of appendices which are posted separately (due to file size):

The above document is a large PDF (about 2 MB in size) and contains Executive Summary; Table of Contents; 1. Introduction; 2. Legislative Authority, Policy and Technical Direction for Shoreline Management Planning; 3. Technical Analysis and Description; 4. Shoreline Hazards; 5. Shoreline Management; 6. Engagement for SMP Development; 7. References; and Appendices Titles.

Due to the size of the files, the Appendices are posted separately below. Please download the appendices separately:

The above are the appendices to the Shoreline Management Plan updated and approved in 2019.

The new updated Shoreline Management Plan, as amended and approved, was posted on this web page on March 1, 2019. (Please go to Summary of Changes above).

Hazard mapping online link was posted on March 1, 2019.

The following is a news release issued on February 27, 2019:

Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority Board of Directors approves new, updated Shoreline Management Plan (SMP) 
New plan incorporates several changes in response to public comments

Shoreline Management Plan - Approved 2019It has been more than four years in the making but there is now a new, updated Shoreline Management Plan for the Lake Huron shoreline within the Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority’s area. The Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority (ABCA) Board of Directors approved an updated, amended Shoreline Management Plan (SMP) at the board meeting and annual meeting held on Thursday, February 21, 2019. 

The approved plan provides a consistent, up-to-date guide for development and municipal land use planning along the shoreline, according to ABCA. The plan helps to protect existing development from potential impacts of new development and to ensure new development is not located in the most hazardous areas (where flooding, erosion, and dynamic beaches could pose the highest risk to life and property).

The approved, updated plan provides newer information on shoreline recession rates, brings local policies and application of the Regulation more up-to-date with Province of Ontario policy, and keeps policies current in light of emerging land use trends.

“The new plan includes up-to-date technical work to accurately reflect natural hazards along the shoreline, policies that reflect current land use trends and provincial policy, and new, clear, consistent, practical, local guidelines,” said Geoffrey Cade, Water and Planning Manager. “The approval of an updated plan gives people certainty about what local policies are so property owners proposing development will know what the requirements are for permit applications.”

The previous Shoreline Management Plan had been in effect since 2000 and ABCA began technical work, and consultation with municipalities and the public, starting in 2015. “It has taken a long time to complete the update process but we wanted to take the time necessary to collect the best information possible and to talk to shoreline residents and municipalities and to respond to public questions, concerns, and comments,” said Cade. “We wanted a plan that is current and responsible in effectively protecting life, property, and the environment and we also wanted a plan that was local and practical and this new plan achieves that balance.”

The new Shoreline Management Plan (SMP) reflects public input between 2015 and 2019. Shoreline residents and other interested persons provided written comments during the most recent period for written comments (November 28, 2018 to January 25, 2019). People had also provided comments on the draft development guidelines during a previous consultation period (August 11, 2018 to September 15, 2018). In response to public comments, staff recommended several amendments to the Draft Proposed Shoreline Management Plan (2018) prior to approval. The public also provided written comments in response to previous reports. The revised, approved Shoreline Management Plan (2019) is to be posted online at abca.ca by March 1, 2019, at abca.ca on the shoreline management plan page. The new plan incorporates several changes to the draft plan in response to public comments during the consultation and a summary of those changes is also to be posted online at abca.ca. 

The new, approved plan differs profoundly from the approach recommended by the 2015-2016 consulting team, according to ABCA. In 2016, the ABCA Board of Directors had rejected some key recommendations of a draft recommendation report from the 2015-2016 consulting consortium.

The ABCA Board of Directors held a special meeting on November 3, 2016 where the board made clear it opposed “outright prohibition of all shoreline protection works” and rejected “the underlying principle of managed retreat” and rejected the development guidelines in that report. The Board at that time directed staff to re-engage the public in the update process. The conservation authority later contracted a different firm, W.F. Baird and Associates, to develop a new proposed plan for the Board’s consideration. Conservation authority staff also worked with municipal staff to develop new proposed development guidelines. The new approved plan incorporates some technical work from the original consulting team but includes different development guidelines and different policies for proposed shoreline protection works.

If you have questions, please contact Geoffrey Cade at 519-235-2610 or toll-free 1-888-286-2610.

The above are recent documents. Here are Archives of past documents for your information:

Archives

Draft Proposed Shoreline Management Plan (SMP) - 2018-2019

Thank you for your interest in the work which took place to update the Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority’s Shoreline Management Plan.  The Draft Proposed Shoreline Management Plan was posted here, for public review and comment, on Wednesday, November 28, 2018. Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority (ABCA) received written comments on the draft plan until January 25, 2019. 

The Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority (ABCA) Board of Directors approved an updated, amended Shoreline Management Plan (SMP) at the board meeting and annual meeting held on Thursday, February 21, 2019

Thank you for all the written comments you provided. These comments will be forwarded to the Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority (ABCA) Board of Directors for their consideration prior to any future decisions on the draft plan.

The draft document was comprised of several parts – the draft proposed SMP; and six appendices.  

The links to each section are below. (Due to the size of the files, the appendices are posted separately.)

This work, prepared by W.F. Baird & Associates Coastal Engineers Ltd., not only draws on their significant expertise, but also some of the technical information previously completed for the ABCA. This report is very clear, however, that the recommended policy guidelines advanced in the 2016 Consultant Recommendation Report (including the concept of ‘Managed Retreat’) have been rejected by the Board of Directors of ABCA.

Instead, please refer to the draft Development Guidelines which were discussed during ABCA’s August 11, 2018 and August 18, 2018 public information sessions. They are included as Appendix F.

Draft Proposed SMP

The Draft Proposed ABCA Shoreline Management Plan, W.F. Baird and Associates, 2018:

The above document is 2.2 MB in size and contains Executive Summary; Table of Contents; 1. Introduction; 2. Legislative Authority, Policy and Technical Direction for Shoreline Management Planning; 3. Technical Analysis and Description; 4. Shoreline Hazards; 5. Shoreline Management; 6. Engagement for SMP Development; 7. References; and Appendices Titles.

Due to the size of the files, the Appendices are posted separately below. Please download the appendices separately:

Appendix A

The Draft Consultant Recommendation Report, Aqua Solutions 5 Inc., et al., 2016:

- Included as background technical information only

Appendix B
Considerations for Shoreline Protection Structures, W.F. Baird and Associates, 2017:
The above is Appendix B - Considerations for Shore Protection - Baird 2017.

- An update to a 1994 report

- Included as background technical information only

Appendix C

ABCA Recession Data, ABCA 2018:

Appendix D

Appendix D - ABCA Mapping, 2018:

Appendix D - PDF file of mapping:
Appendix E

Shoreline Slope Stability Risks and Hazard Fact Sheet, Terraprobe Inc., 2017:

Appendix F
Draft Development Guidelines, ABCA et al., 2018:
The above is Appendix F - Notes to Draft Development Guidelines; Development Activity Chart - Bluff; Development Activity Chart - Dynamic Shoreline; Shore Protection Chart
 
Appendix G - Public Engagement Process
Download:
- Appendix G of the Draft Proposed Shoreline Management Plan summarizes some of the public engagement that has taken place between 2015 and 2018 for shoreline management planning updates.
 

Shoreline Management Plan Update - 2015-2019 - Archives

 
News releases - Please scroll down page for more news releases

More news releases posted later in page.

Other Shoreline Management Information

Information on other aspects of shoreline management since 2015 are below:
 
Proposed Shoreline Protection Works Applications

The Board of Directors of Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority (ABCA) approved the following documents, in September of 2018, related to applications and proposals for shoreline protection works.

Public Information Open Houses - Information Materials

Posters and presentations, including proposed draft development guidelines, and other materials from the August 2018 public information open houses have been posted on this page. 

Please see section on 2018 open houses for Posters and Presentations:

Written comments were appreciated by September 15, 2018. This was not the only chance to comment upon proposed draft development guidelines. Proposed draft development guidelines were incorporated into a draft Updated Shoreline Management Plan (SMP) and, following review by the ABCA Board of Directors, that draft plan, including proposed development guidelines, was circulated again for public comments before consideration for approval.

Click this link for draft mapping:

We would like to thank the more than 200 people who attended the two August 2018 public information open houses, on shoreline management, held in Thedford and Zurich. We appreciate your interest and the time you have taken.

Questions and Answers from Public Information Open House - Zurich - 2018

The following video provides questions and answers, as well as presentations, from the public information open house held in Zurich in the summer of 2018.

Other videos about shoreline management planning (2015-2019) are included later in the page. A link to the videos, and other content, is below under Quick Link - Anchor Jump - Topics.

Quick Links - Anchor Jumps

To make it easy to find the content that interests you, we have added anchor link page jumps to this page under the title 'Topics.' 

We have added these links so you can click on a subject area of interest to you and that link will quickly scroll down this web page to the section that interests you. 

We have also added links which allow you to return to the top of the page at any time:

Topics

The most current information about the approved 2019 Shoreline Management Plan is at the top of the page. Below are some of the topics on this page - with easy-to-use anchor jump quick links - about shoreline management during the 2015-2019 update work.

You are invited to click on the page jump links to any of the topics below:

Click this link to return to top of page

 

Earlier Activities:

Click on these links for other shoreline management plan update work from 2015-2017:

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What is a Shoreline Management Plan?

The main focus of the Shoreline Management Plan (SMP) is to address shoreline hazards for flooding, erosion, and dynamic beaches and their impact on shoreline development. 

The main objectives of this focus are:

i. To reduce or eliminate damage due to periods of erosion, flooding, and dynamic beach movement that may occur to development close to the shore of Lake Huron.

ii. To help protect existing development from potential impacts of new development.

iii. To direct new development away from hazardous areas. 

The previous Shoreline Management Plan (SMP) was created in 2000.  An update was needed to meet Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority’s commitment to provide a consistent and up-to-date guide for development and municipal land use planning along the shoreline. 

An updated Shoreline Management Plan (2019) reflects current mapping, legislation, policies, guidelines, technical information related to shoreline hazards, and current land use trends along the Lake Huron shoreline. 

The map image shows the study area.   

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About the Shoreline Management Plan (SMP) Update

We thank you for your continued interest in the 2015-2019 work to update the current Shoreline Management Plan (2000). 

The first Shoreline Management Plan, by Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority (ABCA), was approved in 1994. 

It was created to help address shoreline hazards related to flooding, erosion, and dynamic beaches in Ausable Bayfield watersheds. That plan, created with the help of the community, has reduced damage to property, and risk to people, along the shoreline during severe storms and high water events. 

This plan was updated in 2000 and again in 2019.

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Proposed Shoreline Protection Works Applications

The Board of Directors of Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority (ABCA) approved the following documents, in September of 2018, related to applications and proposals for shoreline protection works.

Plans – Shoreline Management Plans

The previous Shoreline Management Plan for the Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority watershed shoreline was completed in 2000 and was an update of the 1994 SMP. (The plan has been approved in 2019 following technical work and consultation between 2015 and 2019).

Shoreline Management Plan (2000) - Replaced by SMP 2019
Download the (2000) Shoreline Management Plan at this link:
Shoreline Management Plan 1994 - Replaced by SMP 2019

Download the 1994 Shoreline Management Plan at this link:

Draft Proposed Shoreline Management Plan 2018-2019

Interested people were invited to review the draft proposed updated Shoreline Management Plan (between November 28, 2018 and January 25, 2019). The new, approved, updated plan (2019) is at the top of this page - and the previous draft document follows later on the page.

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Newsletters

Newsletter – Information updates by email – e-Newsletter

Members of the public are invited to subscribe to a free electronic newsletter, delivered by email, that provides updates about shoreline management in the watershed. To sign up to receive these updates you may visit this link:

Subscribe to e-Newsletter

Receive regular updates by subscribing to our free electronic newsletter at this link:

For past issues of the newsletter click on these links:
More than 550 people have subscribed to this online newsletter. We thank you for your interest.
Newsletter Past Issues

For issues of the email newsletter click these links to more than 20 newsletters that were issued between 2015 and 2019:

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Fact sheets

Here you may find fact sheets on:

1) Work to update the Shoreline Management Plan; and 

2) Shoreline slope stability risks and hazards.

About the Shoreline Management Plan Update

Download the fact sheet – 2018 – About the Shoreline Management Plan (SMP) Update:

Shoreline Slope Stability Risks and Hazards Fact Sheet for Property Owners – Terraprobe Inc.

Ausable Bayfield Conservation contracted Terraprobe Inc. to create a fact sheet, for property owners, about Shoreline Slope Stability Risks and Hazards.

You may download a free PDF copy of this fact sheet now at this link:

This fact sheet has been created to inform shoreline property owners of:

• Indicators of potential bluff instability and associated risks

• Best management practices for bluff stability and shoreline areas; and

• Sources of additional information.

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News Releases

We have released more than a dozen news releases, to keep the public informed, during the 2015-2019 work to update the current Shoreline Management Plan (2000). They are included here for your information:

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Contacts and how to stay informed

If you have questions for staff at Ausable Bayfield Conservation please phone 519-235-2610 or toll-free 1-888-286-2610 and visit our staff contacts page at this link:

You may also subscribe to our email newsletter for shoreline management.

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Open Houses

Public Information Open Houses – 2018

More than 200 people attended public information open houses held in August of 2018 in Thedford and Zurich. We thank you for your interest and the time you have taken to attend.

The same public interest was shown the year before at Zurich and Thedford public information open houses held in the summer of 2017.

We posted a number of materials from those public information open houses on this web page on the week of August 20-25, 2018.

Posters

Presentations

Presentations from open houses:

Other Materials from Open Houses

Mapping

More than 200 people attend information open houses on shoreline management along Ausable Bayfield shoreline 

Presentations, displays at August 2018 open houses in Thedford, Zurich provided information on proposed draft development guidelines for shoreline 

More than 200 people attended two public information open houses, about shoreline management, held in Thedford and Zurich in August of 2018. Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority (ABCA) hosted the first open house on Saturday, August 11 in Thedford and the second in Zurich on Saturday, August 18. 

“I would like to thank everyone who took the time to attend to meet staff, listen to presentations and review displays, ask questions, and provide written comments,” said Geoffrey Cade, ABCA Manager of Water and Planning. “The open houses offered a great chance to exchange information, to update the public on project progress, to introduce proposed draft development guidelines for review, and to discuss next steps for the update work.”

Posters and presentations from the open houses, including proposed draft development guidelines, have been posted, for information and review, on the abca.ca shoreline management plan page at this link:

Posters explained how shoreline hazard zones are defined and outlined the current development guidelines as well as the proposed draft development guidelines for bluff areas and dynamic beach areas. Presentations were made by Fiona Duckett, M.Sc., P. Eng. of W. F. Baird and Associates Coastal Engineers Ltd. and by the water and planning manager at ABCA. The presentation by Fiona Duckett looked at shoreline recession (erosion) rates as well as next steps for updating the current Shoreline Management Plan (2000).

Members of the public are invited to provide written comments on the open house content until September 15, 2018. 

The public will also have a later opportunity to comment. Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority has contracted Baird and Associates Coastal Engineers Ltd. to compile the 2015-2018 updates into a document for review by the ABCA Board of Directors prior to release to the public for comment. When a draft proposed updated Shoreline Management Plan is released by the board, the public will have a chance to review and provide comments on the updated draft plan. After this period of public comment, the proposed plan would again go the board for consideration of approval. The updates and approval may be completed before the end of the year.

ABCA’s Shoreline Management Plan (SMP) was last updated in 2000. The plan identifies shoreline hazards for flooding, erosion, and dynamic beaches and their impact on shoreline development. A copy of the SMP 2000 is online at abca.ca. The conservation authority started a process in 2015 to begin updating technical information to support updates to the 2000 SMP document. The 2018 open houses provided information on the existing plan, current policies, and next steps to update the current plan.

Updates to the plan will provide newer information on shoreline recession rates, ensure that local policies and application of the Regulation conform to Province of Ontario policy, and keep policies current in light of emerging land use trends. Updates to the Shoreline Management Plan will provide a consistent and up-to-date guide for development and municipal land use planning along the shoreline, according to the ABCA.

Members of the public are invited to subscribe to a free electronic newsletter that provides updates about shoreline management in the watershed. More than 500 people have subscribed to this newsletter. To sign up to receive these updates you may visit this link:

To learn more please review this page or click on the news releases or contact ABCA at 519-235-2610 or toll-free 1-888-286-2610.

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Videos

In order to share information about shoreline management considerations and technical work to update the Shoreline Management Plan, Ausable Bayfield Conservation contracted professional videographers to record some presentations and staff have also videotaped some of the presentations. 
The videos are located on the Ausable Bayfield Conservation YouTube channel and in the links below.
Coastal engineer Fiona Duckett, M.Sc., P. Eng., of W. F. Baird and Associates Coastal Engineers Ltd., presented to the Board of Directors of Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority (ABCA) at the board’s regularly-scheduled meeting on June 21, 2018.
The video is available here:
Baird and Associates previously produced a Considerations for Shore Protection Structures document in 1994 and updated it in 2017. 
The video of the presentation is here:

Video shares presentation on shoreline protection structures 

 
Shoreline Protection Structures Video 

Coastal engineer Fiona Duckett, M.Sc., P. Eng., of W. F. Baird and Associates Coastal Engineers Ltd., presented to the Board of Directors of Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority (ABCA) at the board’s regularly-scheduled meeting on May 18, 2017. The presentation was videotaped professionally and ABCA has posted the video of the presentation online.

Development of Policies and Procedures for Shore Protection Structures along the ABCA Shoreline, May 18, 2017 presentation to Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority Board of Directors, by coastal engineer Fiona Duckett, M.Sc., P. Eng., of W. F. Baird and Associates Coastal Engineers Ltd.
 
Duckett spoke to the board on shore protection structures, including current policies and procedures, and next steps to update policies and procedures. She spoke on the current mix of erosion control structures along the shoreline of the ABCA, natural hazards, shore protection types, and the existing permitting process.

Coastal processes expert spoke to ABCA Board of Directors 

The presentation was videotaped professionally and can be viewed on our YouTube page. 

Dr. Robin Davidson-Arnott, Professor Emeritus, University of Guelph presented to the April 20, 2017 board meeting on the topics of shoreline processes, climate change impacts on the Great Lakes, and shoreline protection.  

Dr. Robin Davidson-Arnott, Professor Emeritus, University of Guelph prepared two local discussion papers released in 2016. The first was Erosion of Cohesive Bluff Shoreline – A discussion paper on processes controlling erosion and recession of cohesive shorelines with particular reference to the Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority (ABCA) shoreline north of Grand Bend. The second was Climate Change Impacts on the Great Lakes – A discussion paper on the potential implications for coastal processes affecting the Southeast shoreline of Lake Huron within the jurisdiction of the Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority. Dr. Davidson-Arnott presented, on the topics of shoreline processes, climate change impacts on the Great Lakes, and shoreline protection, to the ABCA Board of Directors, at the regular board meeting held on April 20, 2017. 
The video of April 20 presentation is posted here: 

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Reports

There are a number of reports on this web page related to the 2015-2018 Update of the current Shoreline Management Plan (2000).

Reports include:

Recession Rate Analyses

Review of Recession Rate Analyses, 2018, by W. F. Baird & Associates Coastal Engineers Ltd.:

Moving Forward – Report on Re-engagement Options for Shoreline Management Plan (2017-2018)

Moving Forward - Report on Re-engagement Options for SMP

The Moving Forward report offered several tasks and anticipated completion dates.

Staff recommended the following first five tasks be approved:

1. Respond to those who provided specific technical or process questions in the comments and that have not already been dealt with. This may require a response from outside consultants. Anticipated February to April 2017.

2. Engage a coastal engineer to update the document Considerations for Shore Protection Structures 1994, including providing direction for information required to accompany applications for shore protection to ensure that the shoreline ecosystem and processes are not impacted and negative impacts on other shoreline properties are not created. Staff recommend that a proposal be requested from Baird Coastal Engineers (who authored the original report) for completing this work and this information be provided at the March 2017 Board meeting.   

3. Post all comments and replies to the website. Anticipated by April 2017.

4. Dissolve the current Steering Committee and thank them for their service during early engagement on the project and technical work and invite them to continue to participate in public engagement opportunities which take place through 2017 and 2018.         

 5. Arrange for presentations to the Board by consultants and/or staff on climate change, coastal processes, recession rate updates, and shoreline protection. March to May 2017.

The Board also asked staff to present again after implementation of these recommendations.

The report also outlined public engagement opportunities including hosting two open houses in 2017. 

As a follow-up to the 2016 special board meeting, in which staff were instructed to provide the Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority (ABCA) Board of Directors with options to re-engage the community in work to update the Shoreline Management Plan (SMP) 2000, staff provided a report to the Board on Thursday, February 16, 2017.

At the February 16, 2017 Annual Meeting and Board meeting, the Board of Directors approved the Moving Forward staff report, which outlined recommendations for moving forward in 2017 and 2018.

The report to the Board of Directors is available for download here at this link: 

Considerations for Shoreline Protection Structures


Updated Shoreline Protection Considerations Report - 2017 - Video

Coastal engineer Fiona Duckett, M.Sc., P. Eng., of W. F. Baird and Associates Coastal Engineers Ltd., presented to the Board of Directors of Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority (ABCA) at the board’s regularly-scheduled meeting on December 21, 2017. 

The updated Considerations for Shoreline Protection Structures report, by W. F. Baird & Associates Coastal Engineers Ltd., was received for information.

View the professionally-videotaped video of the presentation at this link: 

Considerations for Shoreline Protection Structures Report - Updated 2017

This is a 2 MB – large – PDF file of the December 2017 report, Considerations for Shoreline Protection Structures, by W.F. Baird & Associates Coastal Engineers Ltd., which was received for information, by the Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority (ABCA) Board of Directors, at the regular board meeting on December 21, 2017.

Baird and Associates produced a Considerations for Shore Protection Structures document in 1994. 

The firm updated the report in 2017.

Erosion of Cohesive Bluff Shorelines
Erosion of Cohesive Bluff Shorelines – A discussion paper on processes controlling erosion and recession of cohesive shorelines with particular reference to the Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority (ABCA) shoreline north of Grand Bend

Ausable Bayfield Conservation posted online a discussion paper on processes controlling erosion and recession of cohesive shorelines. 

The document is called Erosion of Cohesive Bluff Shorelines. That discussion paper focuses on the Ausable Bayfield shoreline north of Grand Bend. 

This discussion paper was prepared by Dr. Robin Davidson-Arnott, Professor Emeritus, University of Guelph, July 11, 2016. 

The term cohesive shoreline is used to describe coasts developed in relatively weak sediments which include some silt and clay (to provide the cohesion). Coastal erosion results in the development of cliffs which are called cohesive bluffs to distinguish them from the traditional cliffs formed in hard bedrock.

Download a copy of this document at no cost now: 

Climate Change Impacts on the Great Lakes

Climate Change Impacts on the Great Lakes - A discussion paper on the potential implications for coastal processes affecting the SE shoreline of Lake Huron within the jurisdiction of the Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority

The Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority posted a discussion paper that focuses on the potential impacts of climate change on coastal processes across the ABCA watershed area. That paper is called Climate Change Impacts on the Great Lakes – A discussion paper on the potential implications for coastal processes affecting the SE shoreline of Lake Huron within the jurisdiction of the Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority. This document is also posted for free download on the Shoreline Management Plan page.

Discussion paper on potential impacts of climate change on coastal processes across ABCA watershed area. This discussion paper is available for free download. This document identifies the potential impacts of climate change on coastal processes across the ABCA watershed.

This document has been prepared by Dr. Robin Davidson-Arnott (Draft – Version March 31, 2016).

Download Climate Change Impacts on the Great Lakes - A discussion paper on the potential implications for coastal processes affecting the SE shoreline of Lake Huron within the jurisdiction of the Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority:

Draft Consultant Recommendation Report (2016)

A consulting team (2015-2016) did technical work as part of the update and prepared a draft recommendation report. The Steering Committee recommended that the draft report be posted online to provide opportunities for public written comments to help inform development of local policy. ABCA then posted the draft online on September 1, 2016 for public written comments until December 1, 2016. Since the draft was posted, more than 200 people provided written comments. 

Some of the comments were positive towards aspects of the document but the majority of comments were critical of at least some of the draft report’s recommendations including proposed development guidelines. Many shoreline residents said the consultants’ draft recommendations went too far. The Board of Directors agreed at a November 3, 2016 special meeting. 

The Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority (ABCA) released the Draft Consultant Recommendation Report on September 1, 2016 for 90 days of public review and written comments until the closing of the comment period on December 1, 2016. 

On October 20, 2016 the Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority Board of Directors received the Consultants' Recommendation Report for information only. At its meeting the Board expressed serious concern with the recommended shoreline development guidelines contained in the consultants’ report.

At a Special Meeting of the Board of Directors on November 3, 2016, the Board unanimously approved an amended motion that:

Resolved that the Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority Board of Directors declares that it will not implement the Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority Shoreline Development Guidelines of Section 7.8 in the report (pages 113-117) and does not endorse the underlying principle of ‘managed retreat’ and the outright prohibition of all shoreline protection works, and further, that the Board of Directors continue to endorse the use of policies as contained in the 2000 Shoreline Management Plan and the Board of Directors direct staff to provide options to re-engage the public to update the 2000 Shoreline Management Plan.”

Download Draft of Consultant Recommendation Report (2016) now:

Shoreline property owners and other interested people were invited to review the document, download it for free, and provide written comments to ABCA. 

A printed copy of the document was also available for review in the office of ABCA, at 71108 Morrison Line, east of Exeter, for people who did not have convenient access to the Internet. Copies were also available for the public to review at a number of local shoreline libraries. 

Board approves motion that Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority (ABCA) will not implement shoreline management development guidelines proposed in draft report 

More than 270 people attend Special Meeting of Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority Board of Directors; Meeting moved to South Huron Recreation Centre, Exeter to accommodate public interest 

The Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority (ABCA) Board of Directors confirmed through an approved amended motion at a Special Meeting in Exeter on November 3, 2016, that the Board does not agree with the draft shoreline management development guidelines proposed by a consulting team in a draft Consultant Recommendation Report. More than 270 interested people, including shoreline residents, almost filled the South Huron Recreation Centre in Exeter for the Special Meeting. 

The conservation authority, working with a Steering Committee that includes industry, shoreline, and municipal representatives, started work in 2015 to update the current Shoreline Management Plan (SMP), which has not been updated since 2000. Originally, the update was to be completed in 2016 but ABCA accepted the Steering Committee’s recommendation to extend the work into 2017. 

A consulting team doing technical work as part of the update prepared the draft recommendation report. The Steering Committee recommended that the draft report be posted online to provide opportunities for public written comments to help inform development of local policy. ABCA then posted the draft online on September 1, 2016 for public written comments until December 1, 2016. Since the draft was posted, more than 200 people have provided written comments. Some of the comments have been positive towards aspects of the document but the majority of comments have been critical of at least some of the draft report’s recommendations including proposed development guidelines. Many shoreline residents said the consultants’ draft recommendations went too far. The Board of Directors agreed at the special meeting. 

The chairman of the ABCA, Mike Tam, on October 27, 2016, called the November 3 Special Meeting, at the written request of one-third of the Directors, to deal with a notice of motion. The motion in the notice was introduced by director Burkhard Metzger. At the Special Meeting, Metzger also introduced an amendment that changed the motion’s wording from the board “does not intend to” implement to “will not” and that deleted the words “in its proposed form.” Director George Irvin requested recorded votes. The votes were recorded and all members of the Board of Directors voted in favour of the motion as amended. 

The approved amended motion, moved by Dave Frayne and seconded by George Irvin, was carried and said that: Resolved that the Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority Board of Directors declares that it will not implement the Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority Shoreline Development Guidelines of Section 7.8 in the report (pages 113-117) and does not endorse the underlying principle of ‘managed retreat’ and the outright prohibition of all shoreline protection works, and further, that the Board of Directors continue to endorse the use of policies as contained in the 2000 Shoreline Management Plan and the Board of Directors direct staff to provide options to re-engage the public to update the 2000 Shoreline Management Plan.”

Chairman Mike Tam thanked the crowd for being polite and cordial as the Board conducted its meeting to consider the motions.

“A number of people asked that the Board provide additional clarity in a timely way and the calling of a Special Meeting was a way for the directors to reinforce that they are not going to implement the development guidelines proposed by the consulting team,” said Brian Horner, ABCA General Manager and Secretary-Treasurer. “We appreciate the interest shown by the public and the input they have provided us to date. Staff will now work to provide the Board with options for re-engaging the public and all our partners to update the 2000 Plan.” 

The primary focus of the ABCA Shoreline Management Plan Update is to address shoreline hazards for flooding, erosion, and dynamic beaches and their impact on shoreline development. According to staff, updates to the 2000 Shoreline Management Plan would provide and support solutions to current and future issues and problems along the shoreline; reduce damage due to periods of erosion, flooding, and dynamic beach movement that may occur to development close to the shore of Lake Huron; direct new development away from hazardous areas; and help to protect existing development from potential impacts of new development. An updated Shoreline Management Plan should reflect current mapping, legislation, policies, guidelines, technical information related to shoreline hazards, and current land use trends along the Lake Huron shoreline, according to ABCA.

Ontario Regulation 147/06 (The Regulation of Development, Interference with Wetlands and Alterations to Shorelines and Watercourses) is a provincial regulation that gives Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority a regulatory role to help protect life and property in areas including shoreline hazard areas. The conservation authority’s planning and permits program reviews new development proposals along the shoreline. Updates to a Shoreline Management Plan provide a more consistent and up-to-date guide for development and municipal land use planning along the shoreline, according to ABCA. Updates provide newer information on shoreline recession rates, ensure that local policies and application of the Regulation conform to Province of Ontario policy, and keep policies current in light of emerging land use trends. 

Members of the public are invited to subscribe to a free electronic newsletter that provides updates about shoreline management in the watershed. To sign up to receive these updates you may visit this link: Subscribe now

Agenda

A draft agenda for the special meeting of the Board of Directors was posted at this link: Draft Agenda - Special Meeting 

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Archives

Here is some information on some of the technical work and public engagement activities which took place between 2015 and 2017. Some of this work and input informed a Draft Proposed Shoreline Management Plan (SMP) Update in 2018 and later an updated, amended, approved Shoreline Management Plan in 2019:

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Public Information Open Houses – 2017 

Public attended information open houses on shoreline management 

Saturday open houses, presentations took place in June 2017 in Zurich, Thedford 

People interested in shoreline management in Ausable Bayfield watersheds were invited to attend public information open houses held on two Saturdays in June of 2017. 

Thanks go to the approximately 220 people who took the time to attend.

ABCA’s Shoreline Management Plan (SMP) had been in place since 2000 before an updated plan was approved in 2019. It identifies shoreline hazards for flooding, erosion, and dynamic beaches and their impact on shoreline development. The Conservation Authority started a process in 2015 to update technical information to support updates to the 2000 SMP document. The 2017 open houses provided information on the plan in place at that time (2000) and current policies as well as an update on the progress of technical work for future updates. (The review of local development policies contained in the SMP 2000 took place 2018-2019.) Updates to the Shoreline Management Plan provide a consistent and up-to-date guide for development and municipal land use planning along the shoreline, according to the ABCA. Updates provide newer information on shoreline recession rates, ensure that local policies and application of the Regulation conform to Province of Ontario policy, and keep policies current in light of emerging land use trends. 

Information Materials from Public Information Open Houses - June 2017

Hand-outs from 2017 open houses:

Also - visit Watershed Report Card web page at this link:

Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority (ABCA) hosted the two events. The first open house took place on June 3 in Zurich. The second open house took place on June 17 in Thedford. The open houses ran from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. noon. 

There were scheduled presentations on shoreline management topics, during the open houses. The presentations began at 10:30 a.m. Topics included coastal processes, shoreline recession, shoreline protection, and climate change impacts on the Great Lakes. 

Presentations were by Dr. Robin Davidson-Arnott, Professor Emeritus, University of Guelph, and by Fiona Duckett, M.Sc., P. Eng. of W. F. Baird and Associates Coastal Engineers Ltd. 

Download Feedback Form about the public information open houses. (This is a 200 kB - medium-sized - PDF file. 

Geoffrey Cade, now ABCA Water and Planning Manager, said these events were a chance to find about the progress of technical studies related to shoreline management and to learn about existing policies as well.

Attendees learned from experts in their fields, meet staff members and shared with them questions or comments they had on the technical work, and shared their local knowledge about what they are finding along their shoreline, according to the ABCA. 

ABCA’s Shoreline Management Plan (SMP), which had last been updated in 2000 before an updated plan was approved in 2019, identifies shoreline hazards for flooding, erosion, and dynamic beaches and their impact on shoreline development. A copy of the SMP 2019 is online at abca.ca. The Conservation Authority started a process in 2015 to begin updating technical information to support updates to the 2000 SMP document. The 2017 open houses were to provide information on the existing plan and current policies as well as an update on the progress of technical work for future updates.

Updates to the Shoreline Management Plan provide a consistent and up-to-date guide for development and municipal land use planning along the shoreline, according to the ABCA. Updates provide newer information on shoreline recession rates, ensure that local policies and application of the Regulation conform to Province of Ontario policy, and keep policies current in light of emerging land use trends.

ABCA Answers to Written Questions Posted to Board at Public Information Open Houses (2017)

In addition to questions asked and answered at two Shoreline Management Plan (SMP) Update public information open houses held in 2017 (June 3 in Zurich; June 17 in Thedford),  the ABCA received the following written questions directed to the Board of Directors.  The ABCA’s answers follow each question.

Those questions and answers are provided here (300 KB - medium-sized PDF file):

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Online Survey - Thank you for your comments

We thank everyone who took part in our online survey (2016). This information helped the Steering Committee to understand some of the concerns and issues you identified.

We thank you for having shared your thoughts and for helping an Updated Shoreline Management Plan be the best document it can be to help to protect life and property along the shoreline.

To learn more click on the news releases on this page.

You may also phone 519-235-2610 or toll-free 1-888-286-2610 or email Geoff Cade through our staff contacts page. 

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Consulting Team - 2015-2016

The 2015-2016 consulting team was led by Karen Wianecki, of Planning Solutions Inc., Judy Sullivan, of Aqua Solutions 5 Inc., and Dr. Robin Davidson-Arnott, University of Guelph. Additional input was provided by Billy Singh, of Terraprobe Inc., and Ryan Mulligan, of Queen’s University. 

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Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) - 2015-2016

This is the 2015-2016 Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) fact sheet about the 2015-2018 Shoreline Management Plan Update. For current information about the progress on work to update the Shoreline Management Plan (2000) please click on the 2018 fact sheet earlier on this page.

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Steering Committee - 2015-2016

A multi-stakeholder Steering Committee was part of the work to update the current Shoreline Management Plan during 2015 to 2016.

The Steering Committee included representation from diverse interests including shoreline residents, industry, and municipalities.

Meetings of the Steering Committee were open to the public to observe the work of the Steering Committee and the committee provided a 15-minute period at the end of each meeting for questions and scheduled public delegations. 

The public was invited to contact Ausable Bayfield Conservation Authority staff in advance if they wished to make a presentation to the Steering Committee at the end of the meeting so that sufficient time could be allotted. 

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Steering Committee Archives

Steering Committee Meetings

Thanks to all the shoreline residents, industry members, and other stakeholders who served on the Steering Committee between 2015 and 2016.

The following were presentations made to the Steering Committee in 2015 and 2016 along with agendas and meeting notes from those meetings: 

Steering Committee - July 15, 2015
Steering Committee - October 5, 2015
Steering Committee - January 18, 2016 Update
Steering Committee - May 12, 2016
Steering Committee - July 26, 2016
Steering Committee - October 17, 2016

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