Sunday, 21 August 2016

Planning for climate change and appropriate coastal development.

The Coffs Harbour launch of the NSW Greens plan to protect the state's coasts and waterways was held at Sapphire Beach on Friday 19th August. Visiting Greens MLC David Shoebridge met with local Council candidates to discuss the impact of coastal erosion in the Coffs Harbour LGA.

David Shoebridge, Craig Christie, Clr Sally Townley and Jonathan Cassel at Sapphire Beach

"It is criminal for any local council to be allowing itself to approve private development that is at risk of coastal inundation. As we saw with the recent coastal storms that battered the coast at places such as Collaroy, we are already paying the cost of past poor development with private and public infrastructure now being damaged or lost.” said Mr Shoebridge.

Coffs Harbour's Green councillor Dr Sally Townley showed Mr Shoebridge some examples of homes which are directly under threat of coastal erosion. "Our challenge now is to have appropriate planning controls which acknowledge the movement of the shoreline. There are numerous examples of property loss on the NSW coast and we must act now to avoid building new homes and infrastructure in the coastal hazard zone" she said. 

Channel 7 News Footage
The group visited Emerald Avenue in Sapphire Beach, where at least four homes face immediate risk, having lost part of their yards already.   Mr Craig Christie, Greens candidate for Council identified the cost burden on ratepayers as an important factor. "Ratepayers need rational long term, decisions that will protect the coast and future generations from the cost and heartbreak caused by inappropriate development in locations where there is risk of coastal indundation or damage from storm surge" he said. I love living here and I want to protect the natural beauty that makes our place special. With more Greens Councillors we can protect our infrastructure and our important natural assets.” 

Preventing inappropriate coastal development saves private residents and council the cost of repairing, defending and rebuilding housing and infrastructure damaged from coastal inundation," Mr Shoebridge said.