Call for volunteers to join our Coastal Panels

Are you interested in our precious coastal environment? Keen to see how solutions can be found to help our communities adapt to coastal hazards and risks?

Our Council is now looking for volunteers to join four Coastal Panels that help inform our Shoreline Management Plans (SMPs) around our Thames-Coromandel coastline.

This is a new phase in what is a major coastal management project, defining the flooding and erosion risks to people and the social, cultural, economic and natural environment across all parts of our coastline over the next century and beyond.

Our Council, at its meeting today, approved the process for Coastal Panels to be set up to cover our coastline in the following areas (see map below):

  • Thames and Thames Coast
  • Coromandel Town Coast to Kennedy Bay
  • Whangapoua Harbour and Mercury Bay
  • South-East Coast

Panels will be advisory boards, made up of Community Board representatives, citizens, iwi, local businesses and asset owners, and it's intended they provide a fair and balanced representation of the relevant viewpoints about our coastal environment.

Panels will work together to identify the risks on their local coasts and propose policies and actions to address these as they work through the development of the SMP for their area.

The panels will have access to the relevant expertise required along the way and will be guided by a sequence of steps and key questions  set out by the Ministry for the Environment.

These include:

  • What is happening on the coast?
  • What matters most?
  • What can we do about it and how can we get it done?
  • Is it working?

At the end of the process, panels will make recommendations to our Council on how its community can prepare for and adapt to coastal change.

“Coastal Panels will be the engine for our Shoreline Management Plan project, which is all about building resilient coastal communities,” says our Mayor Sandra Goudie.

“This is a critical new step in the project, and I look forward to our communities getting involved and working together to come up with community-led, coastal adaption solutions,” she says.

Who are we looking for to join our Coastal Panels?

Each Coastal Panel will have a membership made up of:

  • Mana whenua representatives (up to four)
  • Community Board representatives (two members)
  • Community organisations (two members)
  • Citizens (up to six members)
  • Businesses (two members)

Councillors from our Council and Waikato Regional Council will be invited to be observers on the panels.

It’s intended that the panels will be balanced and representative of diverse views and of the community within the relevant SMP area.

Here’s how to get involved

If you would like to get involved, download the expression of interest form, for the panel you wish to join, on the right hand side of this page. 

Send your completed form to

Expressions of interest close on June 11, 2020.

Nominations received will be considered by a strategic advisory group, who will identify a short-list of members.

It is intended that final Coastal  Panel membership will be endorsed by Council at the June 2020 meeting and that Coastal Panels will hold their first meetings in July. 

More information: