NSW Department of Planning and Environment

State Environmental Planning Policy (Resilience and Hazards) 2021 commenced on 1 March 2022 and includes coastal planning provisions.

Chapter 2 (Coastal management) of this SEPP implements the objectives of the Coastal Management Act 2016 from a land use planning perspective, by specifying approvals pathways and how development proposals are to be assessed if they fall within the coastal zone.

The SEPP promotes an integrated and coordinated approach to development assessment, with tailored development controls to ensure development proponents and consent authorities consider and address the most important issues for the coastal management area(s) their proposal falls within. The SEPP is supported by detailed mapping.

Coastal management policy history

From 1979 until 2018, the Coastal Protection Act 1979 set the strategic policy framework for coastal issues in NSW. From a planning perspective, the Act was complemented and supported by these state planning policies:

  • SEPP 14 (Coastal Wetlands)
  • SEPP 26 (Littoral Rainforests)
  • SEPP 71 (Coastal Protection), including clause 5.5. of the Standard Instrument – Principal Local Environmental Plan.

In 2016, the Coastal Management Act 2016 was passed and commenced on 3 April 2018, together with State Environmental Planning Policy (Coastal Management) 2018. This framework repealed the 1979 Act and updated and consolidated the three planning policies into one integrated and contemporary policy.

On 1 March 2022, 45 planning policies were consolidated into 11 theme-based policies, to make the planning system simpler. The Coastal Management SEPP 2018 is now Chapter 2 (Coastal Management) of the Resilience and Hazards SEPP 2021. Other than the savings and transitional provisions of the 2018 policy (which have since lapsed), Chapter 2 replicates the 2018 policy.

Local planning direction

A local planning direction (direction 4.2) for coastal management supports councils when developing and assessing planning proposals (such as to rezone land). This direction ensures that these strategic planning activities are consistent with the objectives of the Act and SEPP provisions for coastal management.

Planning proposals within the coastal zone need to be consistent with Coastal Management Programs (or Coastal Zone Management Plans that continue to have effect) for that area, or evidence obtained through similar processes or studies. This strategic approach will reduce the degree to which future land uses threaten important coastal and marine environmental assets, expose communities to coastal hazards or create other legacy issues that burden future generations.

Coastal zone mapping

The Coastal Management Act 2016 defines the NSW coastal zone as a combination of four areas (coastal management areas). These areas have different values and the Coastal Management Act 2016 specifies the management objectives for each area. The coastal management areas may also overlap.

The Resilience and Hazards SEPP maps the four coastal management areas that make up the coastal zone, for the purposes of both the Coastal Management Act 2016 and the Environmental Planning and Assessment Act 1979. With our Coastal Viewer you can view the coastal management areas down to the individual lot scale.

Launch the Coastal Viewer

If using the ePlanning Spatial Viewer, the Resilience and Hazards SEPP maps can be viewed alongside other relevant local and state planning controls.

Launch the ePlanning Spatial Viewer

History of mapping updates

In December 2018, in response to feedback from councils and public authorities, we made minor updates to the SEPP’s mapping to improve accuracy.

You can access the previous version of the Coastal Management SEPP maps (effective from 3 April – 16 December 2018).

More information

For more detailed information on the Resilience and Hazards SEPP (Chapter 2 - Coastal management) and its accompanying maps, you can read the following fact sheets:

If you have any questions about the Resilience and Hazards SEPP (Chapter 2 - Coastal management) and planning and development assessment in the coastal zone, email coastal@planning.nsw.gov.au

Page last updated: 28/07/2022