Legislation to protect Cap Coast

LARGE areas of the Capricorn Coast will be protected from future urban development under new laws announced yesterday by the Queensland Government.

Environment Minister Kate Jones said the new legislation was designed in response to predicted sea level rises and the desire to prevent development in areas considered to be at high risk of coastal erosion and storm surges caused by climate change.

The new Queensland Coastal Plan will have the power of a state planning policy and will enable planning authorities to prepare for future challenges by banning urban development in areas predicted to be permanently inundated from sea level rises by the end of the century.

The plan contains statutory requirements for new development and greater certainty for local government, developers and the community about how to deal with coastal hazards and protect coastal ecological factors, she said.

Ms Jones said sophisticated new mapping showed precisely the areas considered to be at risk.

“With 85% of Queenslanders living on or near the coast and so many of these areas ravaged by recent cyclones, all levels of government owe it to these communities to manage the pressures of population growth by leaving enough land for development, while continuing to protect our precious coastline,” she said.

“Although many of the forecast sea level rises will not happen in our lifetime, this is about smart planning now, for the future.”

The maps for the Capricorn Coast predict significant areas at high risk of storm tide inundation along most of the existing centres of population between Farnborough in the north and Zilzie in the south.



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