Coastal Management Program


Kiama Council is developing a Coastal Management Program (CMP) for the open coast of the LGA. 

We are in the final stages of development, with council adopting the CMP at the Ordinary Meeting held on 21 May 2024.

Council will now submit the CMP for certification by the Minister, and publish the CMP in the Gazette.

Once gazetted, the CMP will provide Council, other organisations and our community a practical and coordinated way to manage our coastline, using a science-based approach.

This includes identifying coastal hazards and risks, preserving habitats, maintaining or improving recreational amenity and improve the ability of our coastline to withstand future challenges such as climate change.

The CMP focuses on the open coast from Minnamurra in the north to Seven Mile Beach in the south. 

Management of our coastal estuaries and rivers are guided by a separate range of legislation and plans:

The CMP has been prepared using the NSW Government Coastal Management framework.

It meets the requirements of the Coastal Management Act 2016, the Resilience and Hazards State Environmental Planning Policy 2021 (SEPP) and the methodology prescribed by the NSW Coastal Management Manual.

The CMP has been completed with funding and technical assistance from the NSW Government Coast and Estuary Program.

Development of the CMP is a five-stage process:

Stage One - Scoping Study

The Stage 1 Scoping Study was prepared in accordance with the requirements of the NSW Coastal Management Framework, with input from Council staff, community feedback via an online survey and 3 drop in sessions, and agency consultation during 2019 and 2020.

The Scoping Study helps Council and other agencies understand where their organisations currently fit with regard to recognising and managing coastal issues, and where they need to be to make informed decisions in the future.  The scoping study also provides the community the opportunity to identify the issues, risks and values they hold for the Kiama LGA coastline.  The purpose of the scoping study is to identify the scope of the CMP and detail the forward works program and any additional studies which will be required to complete the CMP through stages 2-5.

 The full Stage 1 Scoping Study can be viewed here:

Stage 1 Scoping Study(PDF, 9MB)

Stage Two - Technical studies

Stage 2 of the development of the Kiama open coast CMP involved undertaking detailed studies to identify, analyse and evaluate the risks, vulnerabilities and opportunities for the entire coastline of the LGA.

This included:

  • An assessment of the physical coastal processes and the development of sediment transport conceptual models;
  • A probabilistic assessment of beach erosion and shoreline recession, including both underlying and sea level rise induced recession;
  • An assessment of tidal and coastal inundation for the study area, at the timeframes required by the coastal management manual (current, 20, 50 and 100 years);
  • A first pass assessment of cliff and slope instability; and
  • A detailed risk assessment, bringing together the results of the coastal hazard mapping and conceptual models from previous sections, and identifying key areas of interest for each risk in the study area that should be targeted for management.


    Key coastal hazards and associated risks to land and assets within the Kiama coastal environment, have been identified and mapped within this report.  The key coastal hazards included within the study were:

  • Coastal erosion, which is loss of sand from a beach system via a combination of coastal processes;
  • Coastal inundation occurs when a combination of marine and atmospheric processes raised the water level at the coast above normal elevations, causing land that is usually dry to become inundated by sea water;
  • Tidal inundation, is the flooding of land by tidal action under average meteorological conditions and the incursion of sea water onto low lying land that is not normally inundated, during a sea level event such as a king tide or due to longer term sea level rise;
  • Cliff and slope instability, which refers to the variety of potential hazards and risks associated with both natural and trained cliff faces, and was assessed via a high level walk over by a trained geomorphologist.

The risk assessment outcomes, as well as the hazard mapping provided within the Stage 2 report will form key inputs to identification and assessment of management options during Stage 3 of the development of the CMP.  The hazard mapping outputs developed as part of the Stage 2 report are also planned to be utilised by Council to update the Resilience and Hazards SEPP maps, to include a Coastal Vulnerability Area (CVA) for the Kiama LGA open coast.  Council plans to progress the planning proposal process required to update the Resilience and Hazards SEPP mapping, following adoption and certification of the CMP.

For more information on how coastal hazards are to be dealt with by the planning system, please refer to the NSW Planning Circular ‘Planning for Coastal Hazards’ (PS-21009), which explains and provides guidance for councils and other consent authorities on how to disclose and assess coastal hazards under the Coastal Management SEPP. 

The Stage 2 technical report, appendices and associated mapping outputs for each area of the Kiama LGA is available for download below:

Kiama-Coastal-Management-Program-Stage-2-Final-Report.pdf(PDF, 8MB)

Stage Three - Identify and evaluate potential actions

Stage Three identified and evaluated potential actions(PDF, 4MB) to ensure they were practical, realistic and affordable for Council and the community.

This involved community and key stakeholder consultation (including affected landholders), such as drop-in and online information sessions, as well as formal public exhibition seeking written submissions.

The feedback was used to develop the final Stage 3: Management Options(PDF, 25MB) of the Kiama Coastal Management Program. 

This is also detailed in Annex E - Community Consultation Feedback.

Stage Four - Exhibit draft CMP

Stage 4 of the CMP development involved further consultation and review, as well as public exhibition of the stage 4 document. Feedback from submissions were considered as part of finalising this document, together with further agency feedback.

The CMP has been updated to ensure that it complies with the requirements for certification under Section 17 Coastal Management Act 2016, and all letters of support from relevant agencies required for certification have been received.

Council will now submit the CMP for certification by the Minister and publish the CMP in the Gazette.

A copy of the CMP can be downloaded here: Coastal Management Program(PDF, 140MB)

A summary of submissions and changes made following Public Exhibition of the stage 4 document can be downloaded here: Summary of Submissions(PDF, 213KB)

Stage Five - Implement actions and monitor

Implement actions within the CMP in partnership with the community and other stakeholders, also monitoring the implementation and effectiveness of the CMP.