Victoria’s coastline is one of the state’s major assets. The coast and its built and natural assets are under increasing pressure from population growth and climate change.
Threats to coastal assets affect the commercial, recreational and environmental services they directly provide or support. It has been estimated that, in Victoria, a 0.8-metre rise in sea level by 2100 will put most of our coastal infrastructure and assets at risk of inundation or erosion.
Given the value of Victoria’s coastal assets and the significant threats they face from current and future coastal hazards, it is important that they are adequately protected.
The government, through the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP), is currently implementing a range of reforms to improve the legislative framework, governance, planning and management arrangements for the coast.
This audit examined whether natural and built assets on Victoria’s coastline are adequately protected against current and future erosion and inundation hazards. We looked at the adequacy of individual agencies’ asset and risk management approaches, funding for assets at risk, and statewide coordination of coastal asset protection. Based on the issues identified, the audit also helped to assess and further inform the reform process.
We audited seven agencies responsible for protecting coastal assets—DELWP, Parks Victoria, VicRoads, East Gippsland Shire Council, Mornington Peninsula Shire Council, Gippsland Ports and the Great Ocean Road Coast Committee. These agencies manage a range of significant coastal assets, coastline areas and risks.
We made three recommendations for DELWP, and three further recommendations for coastal managers including DELWP.