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Methods - how we monitor

Where and how we collect the data

Monitoring sites

We surveyed all regional shorelines using Waikato Regional Council's geographic information system (GIS) and consents database (Resource Use Authorisation Management System or RUAMS).

Monitoring frequency

The next survey is planned for 2013, and will be repeated every 2 years.

Monitoring history

The initial survey was for this indicator undertaken during December 1994 and January-March 1995, and included an assessment of all coastal structures (both consented and non-consented) in the region.  Council now assesses this type of information using the consents (RUAMS) database for consented structures only and as a consequence the indicator has been changed to reflect this approach

Measurement technique

  • Field sheets were used to record information on date, time, stage of tide, structure type, structure materials and condition, obvious environmental effects, dimensions and structure ownership (if known).
  • Every structure was photographed.
  • Dimensions of accessible structures were measured.
  • Laminated field maps (1:25 000) were used to mark the location of the structure and provide a map reference.

How the indicator is compiled

The structures in this survey were searched in Waikato Regional Council's consents database, the Resource Use Authorisation Management System (RUAMS).

We used Geographical Information Systems (GIS) to analyse the spatial distribution of the data and to provide summary statistics on the number and distribution of shoreline protection structures for three areas, the west coast of the Waikato region, and the eastern and western coasts of the Coromandel Peninsula:

  • number
  • length of shoreline
  • percentage of shoreline with coastal protection structures.

Guidelines and standards

None relevant to this indicator.


  • The data included in this assessment is limited to consented structures recorded in the RUAMS database.

Further indicator developments

The following improvements to data collection and analysis are intended:

  • Improve the search capabilities of the RUAMS database.
  • Consider incorporating consents for other related activities, such as beach scraping, beach renourishment, backstop walls and, where possible, activities associated with managed retreat.
  • Provide further breakdown statistics by location if required.

Quality control procedures

  • Data provided from RUAMS was checked as far as possible to ensure that it accurately reflected known consented coastal protection structures.