Southern Sydney offshore artificial reef

NSW DPI will be deploying two offshore artificial reefs off the southern Sydney coast to increase fishing opportunities in the region. The reefs will be accessible from Port Botany and Port Hacking.

Named in honour of the late John Dunphy, a national fishing industry giant, it is proposed to construct each of the southern Sydney artificial reefs using up to 20 individual concrete modules measuring approximately 4-5 metres wide by 4-5 metres high and weighing up to 25 tonnes each with modules to be deployed in a patch-like arrangement, similar to the Shoalhaven Heads and Port Macquarie offshore artificial reef designs. The concrete modules will be designed to be self-weighted with no requirement for additional anchoring.

Depending on finalisation of the preferred module design, each artificial reef will comprise of a total reef volume of around 1600 m3. The actual footprint area of the modules for each reef will be up to 320 m2 and likely to spread over areas of 100 by 100 metres.

DPI has completed an environmental assessment (EA) of the proposed artificial reefs which is assessing potential impacts on a small sub-local scale (within 30 m radius of the individual reef modules) to regional scales (>10 km from the reef). Coastal processes, benthic ecology and Aboriginal cultural heritage assessments are currently being undertaken by specialised consultants.

Comprehensive constraints mapping from South Coogee to the Royal National Park has been completed and seabed mapping has been undertaken throughout Bate Bay to south of Jibbon (Port Hacking) Point to identify suitable deployment areas. The identified deployment zone is a sandy area situated approximately 2.5 km south-south-east of Jibbon Point in 25-30 metres of water within 1 km offshore from the Royal National Park.

The reef is being funded from the Transport for NSW Port Botany Boating and Fishing Infrastructure Fund and the efforts of the Recreational Fishing Alliance of NSW, ANSA (NSW Branch) and the South Sydney Amateur Fishing Association in securing funding is appreciated.

Map showing the location of the artificial reef instalation

If you require further information, please call (02) 4916 3835 or email: fisheries.enhancement@dpi.nsw.gov.au