• In the Coastal Zone Management Act of 1972, the U.S. Congress declared the national policy interests in the resources and uses of the nation's coastal zone and encouraged states to develop and implement programs for improved management of coastal areas.

    The Massachusetts Coastal Zone Management Plan was first approved by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration in April 1978 and has been updated through subsequent filings.

    The current Massachusetts Office of Coastal Zone Management Policy Guide - October 2011 (Policy Guide) replaces the Massachusetts Office of Coastal Zone Management Policy Guide - May 2011 as the official statement of the Massachusetts coastal program policies and legal authorities, especially as they relate to the process of federal consistency review. The Policy Guide provides the official program policies of the Massachusetts coastal program—as administered by the Massachusetts Office of Coastal Zone Management (CZM)—and includes information on the federal Coastal Zone Management Act, the history and operation of the Massachusetts coastal program, federal consistency review, and the application of coastal policy in other state regulatory programs. This guide will be of use to a variety of coastal constituents, including federal, state, and local governments and agencies, proponents of projects in or affecting the Massachusetts coast, and interested members of the public.