Kempsey Coastal Zone Management Study

September 2015


Cover of Kempsey Coastal Zone Management Study

The Kempsey coastline is subject to a variety of natural coastal processes that generate hazards on the shoreline, including periodic erosion during storms and inundation during high ocean water levels which may inundate back beach areas via the Macleay River and other smaller creeks and lagoons. With future sea level rise, the shoreline is expected to recede landward, and coastal inundation will become more extensive relative to current conditions. 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 potential impacts of future sea level rise.

This report, the Kempsey Coastal Zone Management study (CZMS), is the second report prepared for Kempsey Shire Council (Council) with funding and assistance from the NSW Office of Environment and Heritage (OEH) under the states Coastal Program covering the Kempsey coastline. It follows the Kempsey Coastal Processes and Hazard Definition Study (CPHDS) (BMT WBM, 2013) and has been prepared in accordance with the NSW Government’s Guidelines for Preparing Coastal Zone Management Plans (OEH, 2013). This CZMS includes a discussion of values and issues, outlines outcomes from community and stakeholder consultation, details a risk based assessment of threats to coastal values and provides a cost benefit analysis of available management options.

The subsequent and final document will be a Coastal Zone Management Plan (CZMP) for the Kempsey coastline. The CZMP will present implementation details for a series of actions designed to address the issues associated with coastal hazards and other threats such as development pressure.

In accordance with the Guidelines for Preparing Coastal Zone Management Plans, a risk based approach has been applied throughout the process of developing this CZMS.

Coastal Zone management planning is an ongoing process and the CZMP will be reviewed in light of new scientific information, changes in community aspirations and changes to planning and policy in the future.