Ohio Coastal Management Program
The Ohio Coastal Management Program (download document) integrates management of Ohio's Lake Erie coast in order to preserve, protect, develop, restore and enhance the state's valuable and sometimes vulnerable coastal resources. The Program is networked, meaning many partners work together to implement and achieve policies within the Program. The Ohio Department of Natural Resources serves as the lead agency. The Program, which received federal approval in 1997, is one of 34 state coastal management programs approved and funded by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.
In an effort to balance diverse economic and environmental interests, the Ohio Coastal Management Program sets forth the guidelines for wise use of Ohio’s valuable coastal resources to ensure their continued benefit for this and future generations.
Through the Coastal Zone Management Act of 1972, the Ohio Coastal Management Program has the authority to review and, if necessary, veto federal actions affecting Ohio’s coastal resources and to resolve conflicts between government agency decisions and the policies of the OCMP.
The cooperative action of the state and its political subdivisions in implementing the Ohio Coastal Management Program results in a comprehensive, coordinated approach for the protection, preservation and orderly development of the Ohio's Lake Erie coastal resources
Ohio Coastal Management Program (OCMP) Summary
- Describes current state coastal legislation and management policies.
- Uses a Networking Framework and process for linking state programs, agencies, and laws while integrating federal and local agencies and organizations.
- References state laws, regulations and programs in 41 management policies which are organized into nine issue areas . Select a link from the below list to jump to each issue area.
- Designates a Coastal Management Area Boundary which includes all of the Ohio waters of Lake Erie to the international boundary with Canada, the islands in the lake, the bed of the lake, and adjacent shorelands within Ohio. The Coastal Management Area extends inland to include areas subject to erosion or flooding, estuarine areas and wetlands, and other areas where the use of which may directly and significantly affect Ohio's coastal resources. (See Designated Coastal Management Area Boundary )
- Administers a Coastal and Estuarine Land Conservation Program to protect coastal and estuarine lands considered important for their ecological, conservation, recreational, historical or aesthetic value or that are threatened by conversion from a natural or recreational state to other uses.
- Addresses the issues of shoreline erosion, shorefront access, and energy facility siting as required by the federal Coastal Zone Management Act (See Policies 1-5, 16-26, and 34-38; Chapters 8-10 of Part II of the Ohio Coastal Management Program Document.)
(photo: Coastal Erosion on Lake Erie)
Nine Issue Areas Described in the OCMP
The Ohio DNR is responsible for implementing a comprehensive coastal erosion and flood plain management program with the following elements:
- Delineate 30 year coastal erosion areas. Maps delineating Lake Erie coastal erosion areas are available for public review by contacting the Office of Coastal Management.
- Enforce rules regulating new structures in Coastal Erosion Areas.
- Allow local authorities to adopt erosion area management regulations in compliance with state policies.
- Administer a permit system for erosion control structures.
- Provide technical assistance for erosion control projects and permit process standardization.
- Coordinate with the Army Corps of Engineers as provided for in the Rivers and Harbors Act of 1899.
- Enforce compliance by local governments with the National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP).
- Require that state agencies, in licensing and permitting, mandate compliance with the NFIP when their regulatory jurisdiction preempts local regulations, and prohibit financial disaster assistance within noncompliant counties and municipalities.
- Regulate design and construction of dams, dikes and levees.
The Ohio Environmental Protection Agency (Ohio EPA) is responsible for implementing the state’s water quality program. The objectives of this program are to:
- Assure attainment of State Water Quality Standards
- Provide financial support for research and pollution abatement projects
- Promote soil and water conservation and prevention of agricultural and urban sediment pollution in cooperation with ODNR
- Implement the Ohio Nonpoint Source Management program in cooperation with ODNR through a broad matrix of authorities.
(photo: U.S. EPA Peter Wise Lake Guardian)
Wetlands and other Ecologically Sensitive Resources - Policies 12 - 15
The ODNR and Ohio EPA share authority for protecting Ohio's coastal wetlands and other ecologically sensitive resources. The Ohio EPA regulates certain activities in wetlands through its state water quality laws, particularly through certification of federally-permitted and licensed activities pursuant to section 401 of the Clean Water Act. Ohio EPA’s certification process includes a sequenced review which requires projects to avoid, minimize, and mitigate for any loss of wetlands. The ODNR also has authority to acquire, manage, and restore coastal wetlands. The programs require the state to:
- Regulate wetland development activities through section 401 certification of compliance with the State’s water quality standards, including the anti-degradation policy
- Develop and maintain a statewide wetlands inventory and data base
- Acquire, protect and restore coastal wetlands
- Protect habitat of rare and endangered species
- Restrict the taking and possession of threatened native animal species
- Restrict the taking, removal, transportation and sale of endangered or threatened native plant species.
Ports and Shoreline Development - Policies 16 - 20
The ODNR has broad authority to protect the public trust in Lake Erie waters and underlying lands through the submerged lands leasing program, submerged lands preserves, and permits for salvage and recovery of submerged abandoned property.
(photo link: Ohio Coastal Atlas Chapter 13 Transportation)
Recreation and Cultural Resources - Policies 21 - 26
The ODNR is responsible for implementing a comprehensive plan to improve public access to Lake Erie's shoreline and waters through the following principal programs:
- Protect public access rights through the submerged lands leasing program
- Provide for public access within the state nature preserve system, state parks system and state wildlife areas
- Prepare, maintain and update a Lake Erie public access facilities inventory; assess needs and prepare plans and policy recommendations to increase public access
- Provide grants for public access improvements
- Protect historically and archaeologically significant resources and abandoned submerged property
- Regulate watercraft safety
The ODNR is responsible for management of all commercial and non-commercial taking of fish and wildlife as well as the protection of non-game and endangered species. The ODNR is required to:
- Regulate the taking of fish and wildlife
- Protect all wildlife including nongame and endangered species
- Investigate water pollution, fish kills and stream litter
- Protect fish habitat.
(photo: Blanding's Turtle)
The Ohio EPA implements a broad range of air quality, solid waste, and hazardous waste programs to protect Ohio's natural resources so as to:
- Attain and maintain National Ambient Air Quality Standards
- Regulate hazardous, solid and infectious waste facilities
- Enforce requirements of the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act (RCRA) and
Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act (CERCLA)
- Establish long range solid and hazardous waste management plans and hazardous waste pollution prevention plans. The Ohio Department of Health regulates marina construction. ODNR, Ohio EPA and other state and local law enforcement officers prohibit the dumping of litter.
The ODNR implements management programs regarding oil and gas, and mineral development for Lake Erie as well as surface mining, while the Ohio Power Siting Board is responsible for the coordinated review of major energy facilities. Key authorities:
- Require certification of major utility facilities
- Require 10-year demand, resource and site inventory forecasts for energy generation and transmission activities
- Regulate oil and gas extraction
- Regulate removal of minerals and other substances from Lake Erie and from under its lake bed
- Regulate permit issuance for surface mining
The ODNR implements several authorities that affect the withdrawal of waters from Lake Erie. These programs:
- Regulate water diversions from Lake Erie
- Require large facilities to register capacity and submit annual withdrawal reports
- Develop a long-term water resources plan for the Lake Erie Basin. (See Great Lakes Compact)
For more information
Ohio Revised Code Section 1506: Coastal Management
Ohio Administrative Code Section 1501-6
Ohio Coastal Management Program Document - This page allows you to download the Ohio Coastal Management Program Document in PDF-format in its entirety, by volume, part, chapter, issue area and/or policy.