The Port Hedland coastline has begun being strengthened against the harsh weather and changing climate of the region with the completion of the town’s first sea wall at Marapikurrinya Park. The almost $4.5 million project in the town’s West End was a joint effort between BHP, the WA Department of Transport through their Coastal Adaptation Grant program, and the Town of Port Hedland. The Town said key benefits of the seawall include mitigating damage caused by cyclonic weather events, rising sea levels, and erosion, as well as strengthening beach integrity and protecting plants and animals. It is also believed the new sea wall will protect residential properties and businesses while securing operations at the port. Mayor Peter Carter thanked BHP and the Department of Transport for their contributions to the project. “Overall, the Port Hedland seawalls project represents a nearly $18 million investment to protect our community from rising sea levels and cyclonic weather events,” Mr Carter said. “The port is the world’s largest bulk exporting port, therefore, it’s crucial for the adjacent coastline to be strengthened to secure the port’s significant national interest. “We’re delivering on the Town’s Coastal Hazard Risk Management and Adaptation Plan by responding to coastal hazards and risks.” BHP General Manager of Port Operations Cindy Dunham said the $3 million contribution to the Marapikurrinya Park seawall project is part of an overall $45 million commitment BHP has made to revitalise the West End of Port Hedland in support of the State Government’s creation of the Hedland Maritime Precinct. “We are excited as community members about the new seawall and footpath along the waterfront, which will protect key community assets and link the popular Marapikurrinya Park and Bert Madigan Park, enhancing tourism and local business opportunities,” Ms Dunham said. “BHP is working collaboratively with the community, the Town of Port Hedland, government and industry to ensure the sustainable future of the port as well as to create a revitalised west end for all of Port Hedland to enjoy.” Council endorsed the design and construction of seawalls at West End, Sutherland Street and Goode Street in March 2020, with the Town of Port Hedland saying these locations were identified as susceptible to coastal erosion and inundation as part of the Town’s Coastal Hazard Risk Management and Adaptation Plan. A council spokesperson said workers were moving on to Goode St next, with the Shire hoping to have that part of the project underway by the end of April.