1. Imminent Bluff Failures and Bluff Safety – webinar available for viewing
Although the level of Lake Huron has dropped in recent weeks, the risk of bluff failure remains very high. The high water levels over the past two years have caused toe erosion (bottom of the bluff) in some areas that will cause top of bluff failures in the future. Landowners who live at the top of an eroded bluff should be aware of the risk for loss of life and property (at both the top and bottom of the bluff).
Shannon Millar, Shoreline Technician, recently did a presentation on the potential of significant bluff erosion and tips on bluff safety. This webinar is now available for viewing on YouTube:
The webinar is approximately 30 minutes in length. We have taken the questions asked during the webinar and compiled them into a FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions) document.
If you have additional questions please contact Shannon at:
Shannon Millar, Shoreline Technician
[t] 519-335-3557 ext. 240
2. Shoreline Survey Results
Thank you to everyone who responded to our shoreline survey earlier this summer. We appreciate you taking the time to let us know about your flooding and erosion concerns. The general results of the survey are posted below:
3. Shoreline Hazard Mapping Update
High water levels over the past several years have caused extensive erosion and inland flooding along Lake Huron. To reflect these changes to the shoreline, Maitland Conservation is undertaking a mapping project to update the existing shoreline hazard mapping within our jurisdiction.
Updating the mapping will give us an improved tool to help reduce the risk of loss of life and property damage due to flooding and erosion. Shoreline hazard mapping is used to:
- plan safe development outside the hazard
- regulate safe development within the hazard
- educate emergency responders for flooding and bluff erosion events
Note: this mapping project does not include changes to Maitland Conservation’s shoreline policies.
The hazard mapping project will get underway this year and is expected to be completed in 2023.
4. We’re Looking for Volunteers
We’re looking for people to join the Community Liaison Group (CLG) for the Shoreline Hazard Mapping Project.
The CLG will provide a forum for community members to be informed about the project, and then convey that information back to local groups. The CLG will:
- participate in several Project Team meetings
- receive project updates
- provide input on local conditions
- advise on the preparation and implementation of Public Education Centres
- act in an advisory capacity to the Project Team but will not be responsible for making decision regarding the project.
The CLG is expected to meet up to four times from late 2021 to early 2023.
For more information check out the CLG Terms of Reference:
Shannon Millar, Shoreline Technician
519-335-3557 ext. 240
5. Shoreline Policies Update
Shoreline policies regulate development within the various natural hazards of the Lake Huron Shoreline. An amendment to these policies was approved at the June 17, 2020 membership meeting.
This update allows shoreline landowners with primary structures at the bottom (toe) of the bluff to apply for retaining walls higher than 1 metre. This work still requires an assessment from a coastal specialist or engineer but reduces the need for a full coastal study. Retaining walls higher than 1 metre may only be proposed to protect an existing primary structure (cottage or house) and/or existing septic system. Please note that this applies for structures at or below the toe (bottom) of the bluff NOT on the bluff.
It is important to note that retaining walls are only a short term erosion fix to. Landowners should not expect these walls to prevent the loss of structures in the future. Maitland Conservation encourages landowners in these situations to move their structures away from the shoreline. Please contact us for options regarding decommissioning or relocating structures off these properties if erosion persists.
To view the shoreline policies please click the link below:
6. View Presentations
We’ve created short videos relating to the shoreline and posted them on You Tube. Thank you to the Ashfield Colborne Lakefront Association for supporting the production of these videos. Thank you also to the landowners who assisted with the project. Click the links below to view the videos:
- Living with Erosion – shoreline and bluff erosion are part of life along Lake Huron
- Shoreline Processes – information on fluctuating lake levels and erosion
- Lake Levels – factors impacting lake levels and projections for 2020
- Shoreline Bluff Webinar – risk of bluff failure and bluff safety tips
7. Want more shoreline information?
- Thinking about a shore protection structure in your area? Be sure to review the new factsheet we’ve created: Shore Protection and then contact Shannon Millar, Shoreline Technician, to discuss your situation before undertaking any work. Shannon can be reached at 519-335-3557 ext. 240 or at email@example.com .
- Check out the other factsheets that have been posted on this page.
- Due to the COVID-19 situation staff are currently working remotely but Cottage Associations and landowners are welcome to reach out to us for on-line presentations on coastal processes and lake levels. We can provide these presentations in a variety of formats and staff are also available by phone and Zoom video conferencing. In addition, recent aerial photos are available to landowners if you would like to see the state of your shoreline without travelling. If you’re interested in an on-line presentation or shoreline photo, please contact Shannon Millar at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 519-335-3557 ext. 240.