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Media Release
Australian Minister for the Environment and Heritage
Senator the Hon. Ian Campbell

23 May 2006

New coastal protection plan


The Australian Minister for the Environment and Heritage, Senator Ian Campbell, today launched a national plan to protect our precious coastal environment and to safeguard our coastal industries and communities.

“Australia’s coasts are one of our most valuable assets. Around 83 per cent of Australians live within 50 kilometres of our coasts and more and more have aspirations to do so. This makes it imperative that we act now to ensure sustainable development,” Senator Campbell said.

“The Australian Government is committed to providing leadership in addressing national coastal development. The new Framework and Implementation Plan for a National Cooperative Approach to Integrated Coastal Zone Management is the latest evidence of this.”

The plan was developed by the Australian Government with the Northern Territory and state governments through the Natural Resource Management Ministerial Council. It provides complementary arrangements on national coastal issues, such as land and marine based sources of pollution, managing the impacts of climate change, introduced pest plants and animals, and planning for population change.

“Australian coasts have been going through a phase of rapid development in recent decades,” Senator Campbell said.

“This plan provides state and territory governments with a valuable resource to support future growth and development, while conserving the key values of our coasts.”

In addition to the Plan, the Australian Government is working to protect coasts with state and local governments and communities on a range of important coastal issues – through integrated coastal zone management, the Natural Heritage Trust and the Coastal Catchments Initiative.

The Australian Government has also invested in coastal research, including on scoping approaches to assess the vulnerability of Australia's coasts to climate change and ameliorating the effects of acid sulfate soils.

“Our coasts are a precious resource and it is up to all of us to work together and conserve them for years to come,” Senator Campbell said.

To access the Framework and Implementation Plan for a National Cooperative Approach to Integrated Coastal Zone Management online go to www.deh.gov.au/coasts/publications/framework/index.html

Media contact:
Marianne McCabe 02 6277 7640

Commonwealth of Australia