Environment

Coastal erosion concerns at west Donegal beauty spot

Eamonn McFadden

Reporter:

Eamonn McFadden

Email:

eamonn.mcfadden@donegaldemocrat.com

Coastal erosion concerns at west Donegal  beauty spot

Magheroarty beach and Ballyness Bay

Concerns have been raised this week about the impact coastal erosion is having on a famous west Donegal beauty spot.
A meeting of the Glenties Municipal District in Dungloe on Tuesday, Cllr Seamus O’Domhnaill said serious problems lay ahead for the local community of Magheroarty.
He expressed fears that the area of sand dunes worst affected could be breached this year if nothing is done to protect it from further erosion.
He explained that the matter was raised when Minister “Boxer” Moran visited Donegal recently, but that this issue has been ongoing for some time.
“I’m afraid the dunes will be breached this year,” he stated.
He said if that was to happen it would impact greatly on the area and would open up Ballyness bay to the open sea.
“He added: “Do the councils want to wait for that?” he asked.
He said the people in the locality are worried this may happen but they cannot take action by moving sand or placing barriers as this could lead to them being prosecuted by the OPW of the National Parks and Wildlife.
The area in question had only a “couple of metres holding” between Ballyness Bay and the sea front at Magheroarty, he added.
He also said a public meeting should take place to address the matter.

Funding approved
Area Manager for Water & Environment, Michael McGarvey, said that there has been funding approved to look into the extension of a breakwater and that the current pier “may well be a contributing factor” to the problem.
He added the OPW would not fund works “until the whole issue is looked at”.
He did make a commitment that protective “bales” would be placed at the area in question and he hoped this would be in place before Christmas.
During the meeting Cllr Terence Slowey welcomed funding for coastal defence works at Carrickfinn beach and Portnoo.