Environmental issues on the Central Coast

marine1.jpgMarine Protected Areas (MPA's) on the Central Coast

CEN recognises the importance of protecting marine and estuarine areas that have important environmental values (i.e. high biodiversity, threatened or endangered and vulnerable species, unique and/or fragile habitat). In particular, CEN is concerned that potential threats posed by unsustainable recreational or commercial activity may degrade areas.

The most practical way to preserve our marine and estuarine waters for continued use by us and our children is to set aside areas for protection - that is, restrict permissible activities in a few areas, leaving the remainder for general use (including fishing). By setting aside specific areas for no recreational or commercial extractive activity (sanctuary areas), we can ensure stocks of important species are maintained at sustainable levels.

Marine Protected Areas (MPA's) include intertidal protected areas, aquatic reserves, marine parks, and the marine components of national parks and nature reserves:

  • Intertidal protected areas: collecting seashore invertebrates is prohibited but fishing is allowed.
  • Aquatic Reserves: fishing and invertebrate collection is generally prohibited; specific rules apply to each reserve.
  • Marine Parks can be separated into four different management zones:
    • Marine Sanctuary - The general public still has access, while any form of fishing is prohibited.
    • Habitat Protection Zones - Allow most recreational fishing, limited commercial fishing
    • General Use Zones - Allow all recreational and commercial fishing
    • Special Purpose Zones - Used for specific management purposes
    • National Parks and Reserves can extend into marine waters, such as estuaries and ocean fronts; generally all fishing is prohibited

More information:

  • Questions and answers about NSW Marine Parks in general - Goto link: http://www.mpa.nsw.gov
  • Question and answers about Marine Parks in the Central Coast - click here
  • Further background about Marine Parks - click here


  • Breen, D.A. Avery, R.P. and Otway N.M. 2004. Broad-scale biodiversity assessment of the Manning Shelf Marine Bioregion. NSW Marine Parks Authority.  (    www.mpa.nsw.gov.au/pdf/psglmp-Manning-Assessment-summary.pdf  (250 Kb)  )
  • Breen, D.A. Avery, R.P. and Otway N.M. 2005. Broad-scale biodiversity assessment of the Batemans Shelf and Twofold Shelf Marine Bioregion. NSW Marine Parks Authority.  (See -    www.mpa.nsw.gov.au/bmp.html )

Contact details

CALL 02 4349 4756

PO Box 149 Ourimbah NSW 2258

FM Building, Central Coast Campus,
University of Newcastle,
Loop Road, Ourimbah,
NSW, 2258


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