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Marine Plan

Environment Tasmania is advocating for a Marine Plan for Tasmania


What is a Marine Plan?

  • A Plan would provide an umbrella framework for holistic and collaborative planning and management of Tassie's oceans.

  • It would be informed by environmental, cultural, social and economic factors.

  • Marine Planning would be established through a science based, consultative, multi-sector marine spatial planning process (mapping of these marine values) and integrated ocean management1.

  • It would be an umbrella strategic document for how we can manage our oceans collaboratively, keeping ecosystem health at the heart.

  • Comprehensive marine plans integrate different activities and are ecosystem based, allowing for the needs of the environment to remain healthy. They identify current and future objectives for all uses, users and values2.


Why do we need one?

  • Tasmania’s oceans are incredible, with world-class ecosystems and marine life, some of the species here are found nowhere else on earth3.

  • Our ocean environment is crucial to Tasmania’s economy and for our thriving coastal communities.

  • Ocean health is declining4, marine species are teetering at the brink of extinction5, six Tasmanian fisheries are depleted or depleting6, and pressures such as marine heatweaves7 and salmon farming are on the rise.

  • There is no overarching plan for how we manage all of these pressures and uses in an integrated way, and this has resulted in conflict and declining ocean health.



Who is endorsing a Plan?

Tasmanian scientists from the Institute for Marine & Antarctc Studies (IMAS), Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO), University of Tasmanian (UTAS) and the Centre for Marine Socioecology (CMS) recommend initiating a co-ordinated approach to managing our coastal waters.1


Where is a Marine Plan working?

  • NSW and Victoria, and the Federal-Queensland management of the Great Barrier Reef, are leading the way in Australia in implementing integrated ecosystem based management.

  • NSW and Victoria have repealed past legislation, replacing it with legislation that includes integration in their objects, guidelines and associated policies and strategies.8

  • Northern Territory has instated a Coastal and Marine Management Strategy. The strategy promises to protect the environment, improve knowledge and understanding of the coast and seas and support the cultural and recreational uses of coastal waters.9


The Opportunity

With the current review of the Living Marine Resources Management Act 1995, the first in 28 years, we have an opportunity for meaningful change for our oceans, reforming the Act and instating a Marine Plan for Tasmania.


How will this make a difference?

  • Ocean health kept at the heart of marine planning.
  • Reduced conflict over marine resources.
  • Sustainable future for our fisheries, both commercial and recreation.
  • Thriving marine life and healthy ecosystems.

  • Collaborative, science-based approach to marine planning, using multi-sector marine spatial planning that considers environmental, cultural, social and economic factors.



1. Integrated Management for Marine Regions #1, CSIRO

2. Briefing Note: A Statewide Marine Plan for Tasmania; The Australia Institute

3. Nowhere Else on Earth, 2011, Environment Tasmania

4. Continent-wide declines in shallow reef life over a decade of ocean warming; Edgar et al; 2023

5. Interim report - Macquarie Harbour Maugean skate population status and monitoring; Moreno & Semmens, 2023


7. South-east Australia marine heatwave forecast to be literally off the scale; Guardian, 2023

8. It's TIME: A proposal for a Tasmanian Integrated Marine Estate Act, Australia Institute, 2023