Coastal Zone Management Study for lagoons endorsed

A final draft Coastal Zone Management Study has been endorsed by Gosford Council for Gosford Lagoons.

The study sets parameters for proposed actions in the area by Council, industry or the private sector, with a focus on pressures to coastal ecosystems, community uses of the coastal zone and managing public safety. This study was built off the back of the latest scientifi c information, combined with community and stakeholder feedback. Overall, it forms part of Council’s broader plan to establish coastal zone management plans for all geographical catchments in the Local Government Area (LGA). There are a range of estuaries and coastal wetlands in the Gosford City Council LGA including Brisbane Water and its tributaries, Broken Bay and the Hawkesbury River estuary (including Mooney Mooney, Mullet and Patonga Creeks). It also includes a number of important coastal lagoons: Wamberal, Terrigal, Avoca, Cockrone and the perched lagoon at Pearl Beach. Over many decades Gosford Council has worked with other government bodies, industry and community to appropriately manage activities in the coastal zone. The Council’s emphasis for coastal management is on conservation, land use planning and rehabilitation. Partnerships between Council, government and the community will be necessary to ensure any conservation and rehabilitation work is undertaken and valued. Council is working on a range of planning activities which aim to provide a balanced long-term management framework for the ecologically sustainable use of our coast and estuaries. These planning activities require a connected community that has the capacity to understand the role of government and the part we all play to ensure the long term protection of the coastal zone. The primary purpose of coastal zone management planning is to describe proposed actions to be implemented by council, other public authorities and, potentially, by the private sector to address priority management issues in the coastal zone over a defi ned implementation period. These issues include managing risks to public safety and built assets; pressures on coastal ecosystems; and community uses of the coastal zone. Gosford’s four coastal lagoon systems are a signifi cant geographic feature of the Gosford region. These lagoon systems belong to a special class of estuary known as intermittently closing and opening lakes and lagoons (ICOLLs). An ICOLL can also be defi ned as a ‘shallow coastal water body separated from the ocean by a barrier, connected at least intermittently to the ocean by one or more restricted inlets, and usually oriented shore parallel’. Each lagoon is subject to a variety of pressures which may threaten existing economic, social and environmental values. The Gosford coastal lagoon systems are a highly valued natural resource for both local residents and visitors. The systems support a network of signifi cant ecological communities as well as a diverse range of recreational uses. Past land-use changes and human activities, combined with a growing population, are placing increasing pressure on the natural values and ecological health of the lagoons. Gosford Council strives to preserve and enhance our coastal environments. This can only be achieved through community education about the importance of coastal environments, the potential impacts of human activity upon these environments and through good management. This revised and improved Coastal Zone Management Plan complements the development of Plans for the Lower Hawkesbury River Estuary (2009), Brisbane Water (2012) and Pearl Beach Lagoon (2014).

Email, 9 June 2015 Gosford Council media Minutes, 9 June 2015 GOV.70, Coastal Zone Management Plan for Gosford Lagoons