Shorelines, Docks & Shoreline Structures

Water Levels Series In Fall 2021, Georgian Bay Forever (GBF) and the Georgian Bay Association(GBA) hosted a webinar series: Extreme Water Levels: Impacts and Strategies. This series was a collection of webinars aimed at answering questions, providing strategies to adapt your property and your budget, and raising awareness about the extremes and variabilities that will impact the ecosystem and your family's enjoyment of your favourite place on the Bay.

There were 3 webinars. This page addresses the SECOND webinar.

To see page summaries of the past 2 webinars - look to these links:
Water Levels: What's Happening? What's New? (Oct. 23, 2021) can be found here.
Septic Systems and Potable Water Vulnerabilities, Insurance & Planning, Coastal Infrastructure (Dec. 4, 2021) can be found here.
Stuctural damage water levels
Speakers included:
Roy Brooke is the Executive Director at Municipal Natural Assets Initiative
Rick Layzell - CEO of Boating Ontario Association
Brian Majka - Senior Restoration Ecologist from GEI ConsultantsAlex Ray from Payette Environmental Services, LLC. and the owner of Payette Trails
With Remarks by:
Elder Marilyn Capreol, Anishinaabe from Shawanaga First Nation - Founding member of the Conservation through Reconciliation Partnership Elder’s Lodge
Rolfe Jones: Executive Director and President of the Georgian Bay Association, and Adam Chamberlain, Chair of Georgian Bay Forever.
Aisha Chiandet: Water Scientist with the Severn Sound Environmental Association
There were 3 webinars. This page addresses the SECOND webinar.

To see page summaries of the past 2 webinars - look to these links:
Water Levels: What's Happening? What's New? (Oct. 23, 2021) can be found here.
Septic Systems and Potable Water Vulnerabilities, Insurance & Planning, Coastal Infrastructure (Dec. 4, 2021) can be found here.

COMPLETED. Webinar 2: Shorelines, Docks & Shoreline Structures

Sat. Nov. 13, from 10 am to 12 pm.

Slides can be found here (PDF download).
Video. Watch the 2 hour webinar here.

The second webinar focused on:
    TOPIC A: Storms, waves and wakes - Natural Coastal Processes - Naturalizing Shorelines - Flooding - High Water Mark - Land Water Interface- Municipal Infrastructure
    TOPIC B - Coastal Infrastructure – Marinas & Shoreline Businesses – Docks/Other Shoreline Structures - Impacts & Adaptation Strategies - Regulations

Top 6 Major Takeaways from the November 13th Webinar: Shorelines, Docks & Shoreline Structure of the Extreme Water Levels series:

1) Waves typically originate from wind or disturbances such as boats. Fetch, depth and wind speed/duration are key factors in wave height. Bigger storms + deeper water = bigger waves closer to the shoreline. Gentler shoreline slopes and vegetation will dampen/dissipate wave energy and can be used as the basis for creating soft but stable shorelines

2) Wake boats should be operated in sufficiently deep water to protect bottom sediments and near shore vegetation. ‘Living shorelines’ absorb energy through the use of softer materials and live vegetation, and help buffer wave energy before it reaches shore.

3) There is a case to be made for approaching natural assets collectively, including that they can benefit from the delivery of core services, they can be managed (which is the focus of local government natural-asset management), and they are often over-used and under-recognized.

4) There are significant differences in the approach to the high-water mark across Georgian Bay’s coastal municipalities. Those marks that have been set are at a lower level than the 2019/20 water level, and these may need to be re-considered given higher water levels are expected in the future.

5) Water-level changes affect the many businesses that are part of our coastal infrastructure, including by increasing their capital and operating costs related to dock systems, shore-wall systems, and shoreline properties.

6) There are planning permission requirements for installing new/replacement docks and for relocating shoreline structures, as well as setback requirements, and some of these vary by municipality. Those involved in new construction or relocations should consider placing structures above the minimum setback from the high water mark required by the municipality to be prepared for higher water levels.