Ireland: Swept by the sea: Dublin woman’s home falls onto beach from coastal erosion and now her dad’s house is at risk - - PressFrom - United Kingdom
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Ireland Swept by the sea: Dublin woman’s home falls onto beach from coastal erosion and now her dad’s house is at risk

14:15  19 october  2019
14:15  19 october  2019 Source:   extra.ie

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A coastal erosion risk map published in a 2012 local planning document puts the Baylesses’ s house in a swath of coastline expected to be at risk of The district council has been able to raise funds for short-term measures to attempt to slow erosion and adapt to it, including placing rocks on the beach

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a person standing in front of a brick building © Provided by Associated Newspapers (Ireland) Limited, t/a dmg Media Ireland

Across the world we are seeing the effects of climate change, however, residents of Portrane in North County Dublin are experiencing first-hand its devastating consequences.

‘I’m left with nothing. I’m on the wrong side of 50 and no financial institution is going to touch me with a barge pole for a mortgage or a loan.’ 

These are the words of Grainne Hannigan. She had to evacuate her home in March 2018 due to coastal erosion and now her father’s home, where she has been forced to live, is at imminent risk.

Grainne was given the notice to vacate her property by Fingal County Council in March 2018 after the Beast from the East and Storm Emma battered her property.

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Beaches regularly undergo cycles of erosion or growth in response to tides, wind and waves. Urban development is at risk of damage from these coastal changes and by changing coastal stability Sea Walls and Dune Management. Many seawalls already exist along Collaroy-Narrabeen significantly

As a result, more properties which now all but teeter above the beach below have been added to the list of homes no longer considered safe. Ten houses were abandoned last year, their plots going the way of the three local hotels – the Flamborough cliffs. What you need to keep the sea in its place.

The house wasn’t demolished until April 2019 when the back wall of the house physically fell onto the beach.

a sign on the side of a building © Provided by Associated Newspapers (Ireland) Limited, t/a dmg Media Ireland

Grainne now lives with her father who’s home is now at imminent risk of being washed away from the rapid erosion.

With every storm that comes the town faces extreme erosion, and an estimated five metres was lost from the edge during Storm Lorenzo.

Raymond Brett, the chairperson of the local Liason group, said that since the 1980s they have estimated that Portrane has lost over 100 acres of beach.

‘The future looks like that if nothing is put in place there is a real risk that families will lose their homes,’ he told Extra.ie.

Grainne’s house is the only home that has been lost in the past few years to coastal erosion, however, nine houses are now at immediate risk and after that there are hundreds.

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Women . Almost 7,000 homes and buildings will be sacrificed to the rising seas around England and Wales over the next century, according to an unpublished Environment Agency (EA) analysis seen by the Guardian. Over 800 of the properties will be lost to coastal erosion within the next 20 years.

Erosion at Collaroy Beach in 1920. Courtesy Faviell CollectionSource:Supplied. Swallowed by the sea : Garry Egger’ s family home washed away in Several residents have already lost their homes to the sea and scores more at risk . Roaring seas have ploughed through more than 40m of foredune in

a giraffe standing next to a tree © Provided by Associated Newspapers (Ireland) Limited, t/a dmg Media Ireland

In November 2018, 380 sea bees — a round concrete structure — were placed on Portrane beach as a temporary measure to help slow down the damage caused by erosion.

a tree with a mountain in the background © Provided by Associated Newspapers (Ireland) Limited, t/a dmg Media Ireland

Some €500,000 was spent on the structures, however, Grainne has said that although they have saved some properties, it has done more bad than good for her house and her fathers.

‘The sea bees stopped at the perimeter of my property and they have actually exacerbated the coastal erosion, so it’s digging in deeper there where the sea bees end,’ she explained to Extra.ie

‘My fathers’ house is behind a tree line and from this line there are less than two meters, it has eroded more here than anywhere else.’ 

Portrane resident Eddie Monks owns the town’s only takeaway, a chipper called Pipers, where he also lives with his family.

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Is beach erosion a natural cycle or is it getting worse with rising sea levels? Unfortunately for beach lovers and owners of high-priced beach -front homes , coastal erosion in any form is usually a one-way trip. “Therefore, beaches are greatly influenced by the frequency and magnitude of storms along a

The threatened coastal area is home to 2m people and a hub of the oil-and-gas industry. In Cameron Parish, one of the state’ s nine coastal districts, all of which are being eroded by the sea Behind an artificial beach in Cameron Parish, Brett Dupuis, a project manager for Weeks Marine, a

When he first opened the chipper in 1982 there was a copious amount of green space behind the property, where often small fairs were placed.

a stone building that has a rock wall © Provided by Associated Newspapers (Ireland) Limited, t/a dmg Media Ireland

Now, his property is just meters away from the edge.

‘In the last say seven or eight years it has really started to hit us hard,’ he told Extra.ie.

Something has changed, it’s really just stepped it up, every winter now we get a good bit of erosion.

‘Between the storms and the fishing, it’s really upped the damage we are seeing from erosion.’ 

Grainne says that a permanent solution, like a sea wall, is urgently needed in order to save her father’s home.

Local Fianna Fail councillor Adrian Henchy says that there are three options for a more permanent solution to the sea bees: a sea wall, a method called coastal grymes or a coastal retreat.

A sea wall or coastal grymes effectively work as wave breakers and would allow the coast to recover.

A coastal retreat is what many parts of the UK are doing, and it is leaving the coast as is and rehousing residents affected. This solution is what residents of Portrane are praying won’t happen.

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Crowding houses up against a beach can also slow erosion , Pilkey said, as has been observed in New Jersey (How that works is a puzzle, he said, and it' s still "There is increasing need for this kind of comprehensive assessment in all coastal environments to guide managed response to sea -level rise

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a group of people on a beach © Provided by Associated Newspapers (Ireland) Limited, t/a dmg Media Ireland

‘I would think that the best solution is either the sea wall or the grymes,’ Adrian explained to Extra.ie

‘Something needs to be done as soon as possible, with every storm that comes there is a risk to the local businesses in Portrane, a risk to houses and while the sea bees are helping we need a permanent solution whether that’s a sea wall or grymes.’ 

Although Grainne’s home is the only house that has been lost in recent years, many houses in the peninsula were demolished due to the dangers of erosion in the 1960s.

Ex-Labour TD Sean Ryan, who has lived in Portrane all his life, remembers his childhood home which is long gone.

‘I lived in the old coast guard cottages and the houses are long gone,’ he told Extra.ie

‘In the early 60s the back of our house was fronting onto the beach and the high tides of coastal erosion was so bad at that stage that in fact the scheme was approved by the department of the environment to respond to coastal erosion and protect the houses and the roads in the area.’ 

a house that has a sign on the side of a building © Provided by Associated Newspapers (Ireland) Limited, t/a dmg Media Ireland

Fingal County Council is the first local authority in the country to set up a coastal liaison group. There is currently no national directive for coastal erosion.

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Yet coastal dwellers whose homes got swamped by the occasional storm surge could rely on the water to In California, where erosion and winter storms routinely knock multimillion-dollar homes off Case in point: Beyoncé’ s dad . Matthew Knowles has been locked in a bitter struggle to save his

a stone building © Provided by Associated Newspapers (Ireland) Limited, t/a dmg Media Ireland

However, Portrane beach is a special area of conservation, which means that the bar is very high for what man-made things can and can’t be placed on the beach.

Adrian said that the weight of the issue is being put on Fingal but says that for anything to be done all parties need to cooperate.

a sign on a pole © Provided by Associated Newspapers (Ireland) Limited, t/a dmg Media Ireland

He believes that the only way the issue will be solved is if the Office of Public Works (OPW), the National Parks and Wildlife and Fingal County Council work together.

‘Ultimately, the only way this is going to be resolved is by a strategy that addresses coastal erosion not only in Portrane but in Portmarnock and Rush too,’ Adrian said.

‘They can’t just keep turning a blind eye on it or pushing it back on Fingal County Council.’ 

Grainne has been living with her father for 18 months, and although she was told by the council that her housing needs would be addressed, they haven’t.

a house that has a sign on the side of a building: Portrane Coastal Erosion © Provided by Associated Newspapers (Ireland) Limited, t/a dmg Media Ireland Portrane Coastal Erosion

‘I’m living with my dad for 18 months and absolutely nothing has been done. I have been engaging with housing departments because that’s what I’ve been told to do.

‘And they made it very clear that the only thing that they would be willing to do is to treat me as a displaced person and offer me a tenancy in one of their social housing.

‘To be honest I think they are more worried about the anchor than the houses.’

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Portrane’s memorial anchor, which pays tribute to those lost on the Tayleur ship in 1854, needs to be relocated as it is extremely close to the edge.

On Friday, October 18, Fingal County Council mapped out on the main green area in front of Pipers where they are moving the anchor too.

Grainne, who lived in her now demolished house with her daughter and granddaughter, says that she hasn’t received a ‘red cent’ of compensation.

a herd of sheep standing on top of a wooden fence: Portrane Coastal Erosion © Provided by Associated Newspapers (Ireland) Limited, t/a dmg Media Ireland Portrane Coastal Erosion

‘Effectively, I was mortgage-free, I worked really hard to get that. My house that they demolished was mortgage-free,’ the grandmother said.

a field of grass: Portrane Coastal Erosion © Provided by Associated Newspapers (Ireland) Limited, t/a dmg Media Ireland Portrane Coastal Erosion

‘And now I’m left with nothing. I’m on the wrong side of 50 and no financial institution is going to touch me with a barge pole for a mortgage or a loan. 

‘I’ve no asset, I’ve nothing going into my pension.’ 

A spokesperson for Fingal County Council said that the council is awaiting the results from the options assessment for long-term solutions to deal with erosion at Portrane.

a person standing in front of a mountain: Portrane Coastal Erosion © Provided by Associated Newspapers (Ireland) Limited, t/a dmg Media Ireland Portrane Coastal Erosion They said: ‘The assessment is currently underway and should be completed within the next two to three months.’

Some residents of the coastal town say they worry that nothing is being done because it is such a small community.

According to 2016 census figures the small town has a population of 1,236. 

Residents have been rallying for a solution to the effects that the erosion is causing to their homes, their businesses and their community, and if nothing is done immediately the consequences will be devastating.

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