Shoreline Management Planning
What is a Shoreline Management Plan (SMP)?
A Shoreline Management Plan (SMP) is a long term, high level, broad assessment of the risks associated with erosion and flooding at the coast that seeks to reduce these risks to people and the developed, historic and natural environments. The plan offers a vision for how the coast is to be managed in the future, by identifying sustainable long-term coastal erosion and flood risk management policies for the coast.
The SMP is a non-statutory document outlining how the shoreline should be managed in the future, balancing the scale of the risks with the social, environmental and financial costs involved, and avoiding, where possible, adverse impacts on adjacent coastal areas. It must take account of existing planning initiatives and legislative requirements and use the best present knowledge on the possible effects of climate change and sea level rise. The plan should inform, and be supported by, the statutory planning process.
The SMP is a ‘living’ document used by the operating authorities and other organisations (e.g. the Local Authority, Natural Resources Wales) to consider the planning and implementation of sea defences and other maritime works. It is also used by the Welsh Government and NRW when considering applications from the operating authorities to fund various coastal defence works.