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Current state and coastal challenges

Our coastal zone is also integral to our lives, serving as a residence, workplace, and recreational haven for many. Approximately 50% of our population resides within seven kilometres of the coast, emphasizing our strong reliance on these systems for our lifestyles, culture, and livelihoods.

Climate change is altering our coastline at unprecedented rates, with sea level rise, coastal erosion, inundation and weather changes compounding the habitat loss already experienced due to human activity. These changes also impact the built environment, natural resource systems, and Australia’s infrastructure planning. Australia lacks a national, cohesive approach to monitor, understand, predict and adapt to coastal changes.

Observational data will allow stakeholders to better understand coastal processes and potential for coastal changes that will affect species, habitats, industries, and communities.

Gaining a comprehensive understanding of coastal change, and actively contributing to forecasts, predictions, decision-making, and sustainable use and management of ecologically and economically important coastal areas requires the acquisition of additional information and data.