The Toby Inlet is a small estuary, to the east of the Dunsborough town site. Drainage modifications over many years have substantially reduced water flow to the Inlet and with restricted tidal flow, this Inlet is often cut off from the ocean. During the summer months the Inlet becomes stagnant and eutrophic resulting in the emission of unpleasant odours. On site waste water disposal systems servicing the dwellings surrounding the Inlet are believed to contribute to the eutrophication and odours. The Toby Inlet Catchment Group has been active in trying to improve water quality and advocate for better management of the Toby Inlet for many years.
Coordination of management of the Toby Inlet will be undertaken by the City of Busselton with support from the Department of Water, Water Corporation, Busselton Water, the Toby Inlet Catchment Group and Geocatch.
The main activities to be coordinated by the City of Busselton over the next three years will be to:
• Establish management objectives in consultation with key stakeholders and the community for the Toby Inlet
• Coordinate the involvement of other parties to provide technical support and management input to improve water quality in the Toby Inlet
• Liaise with GeoCatch to coordinate community consultation and communication regarding the Toby Inlet
• Seek funding and partnerships for the development and implementation of a water management plan for the Toby Inlet
• Work with the Department of Water to develop water quality treatment trials for the Toby Inlet and investigate options for increasing flow into the Toby Inlet
In addition the Minister for Water has announced an extension of the infill sewerage program in the vicinity of Toby’s Inlet which will make a measurable difference to nutrient loading and water quality adjacent to dwellings. This action addresses the concerns of local residents, and over the longer term will contribute to improved water quality and odour reduction, and generally improve the amenity value of Toby Inlet.
Fortnightly water quality monitoring is undertaken in the Toby Inlet by the Department of Water over summer.
For more information contact Greg Simpson – Manager Environmental Services, City of Busselton 9781 0485.