A huge new surf centre at Garie, in the middle of Royal National Park, is making life safer for surfers and swimmers at one of Sydney's most remote, wild and iconic beaches.
It's also setting a new benchmark for sustainability on the sand, showing how beach amenities can have minimal impact on the surrounding environment. Garie Surf Safety Centre collects its own water, generates its own power and treats much of its own waste.
Water is collected from the rooves of the new buildings and flows to underground storage tanks. These tanks can be supplemented by nearby reserve tanks. Water is saved through triple A rated shower heads and taps. Wastewater is treated on-site by a biomax system very similar to a septic system. The high-quality treated wastewater is disposed of in absorption trenches beneath the garden beds. Stormwater drainage has also been improved.
Solar energy provides the primary power supply. When backup power is needed, it can be supplied by a highly efficient silenced diesel generator using less diesel than standard generators. The building is fitted with low-energy light bulbs. The timber panelling on the outside of the buildings is made from high-durability Australian native Blackbutt trees, sourced from plantations, while the timber has been treated with natural lanolin rather than synthetic chemicals for preservation from the salt-laden winds.
The sand dune that once existed between Garie Beach and the nearby car park, helping prevent beach erosion, is being replaced. Local species are being used in the landscaped areas. Garie is reportedly one of a new crop of sustainable surf centres recently established in Sydney and the South Coast.
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- People wanting more information on the sustainability aspects of Garie Surf Safety Centre can contact the Project Supervisor on (02) 9542 0634.
- For more information on Garie and Royal National Park, go to nationalparks.nsw.gov.au