Kempsey Coastal Zone Management Plan

October 2016


Cover of Kempsey Coastal Management Plan

The coastline is dynamic and exposed to ongoing changes as the natural Coastal Processes including waves, tides and storms reshape it. Coastal processes fall into the definition of hazards where they impact upon built assets or valued natural areas. Sea level rise will continue to exacerbate these hazards. Fortunately, much of Kempsey’s shores are undeveloped, with the exception of low key recreational facilities, while the majority of the coastal zone is retained in public ownership within National Parks and Crown Reserves. This controlled land tenure largely affords the ability to maintain unique natural values and provides greater resilience to coastal processes and the impacts of ongoing sea level rise.

The prevailing coastal processes together with the underlying geology shape the Kempsey coastline. The regional geology determines the orientation of the coastline, the width and slope of the continental shelf, the type and location of headlands, reefs and other structures and the sediment size and type. Coastal processes are considered a hazard where they impact upon human developments or values. The processes considered within this CZMP include:

  • Waves
  • Storm history
  • Tides
  • Elevated water levels
  • Longshore sediment transport
  • Implications of breakwaters, headlands, etc.
  • Rip currents
  • Storm based erosion and accretion cycles
  • Wind blown sand transport
  • Coastal creeks and rivers
  • Historical sand mining
  • Dune management
  • Flood mitigation works, and
  • Climate change impacts.

The current report is the third and final report prepared on behalf of Kempsey Shire Council. The reports are prepared under the state government Coastal Zone Management Program, in accordance with the Guidelines for preparing Coastal Zone Management Plans (OEH, 2013).

The present document is designed to be succinct and practical to enable implementation of the recommended management actions. For more detailed understanding of the coastal hazards and management considerations and decision making processes, it is suggested that the earlier documents are reviewed.