Marine water quality objectives for NSW ocean waters

cover image: Marine Water Quality Objectives for NSW ocean waters

About this publication

available as pdf

The introduction of the Marine Water Quality Objectives is part of the NSW Government's program to set water quality objectives for all its major waterways.

In 1999, water quality objectives for NSW rivers and estuaries were introduced in 31 catchments. To complement these, the Government has developed a set of Marine Water Quality Objectives for NSW ocean waters - a key initiative under the Government's Coastal Protection Package announced in June 2001. 

The aim of the Marine Water Quality Objectives is to simplify and streamline the consideration of water quality in coastal planning and management. This will ensure that the values and uses that the community places on ocean waters are recognised and protected, now and into the future.

The Marine Water Quality Objectives are intended for communities, local councils, Catchment Management Authorities and state agencies to use in catchment management and land use planning activities. They cover the catchment areas of the:

While the Marine Water Quality Objectives are not regulatory or mandatory, they are a useful tool for strategic planning and development assessment processes. For example, they will provide local councils with agreed guideline levels for water quality when considering coastal development assessments. 

Page last updated: 22 March 2012