Priorities for identification and sustainable management of high conservation value aquatic ecosystems in northern Australia
Kennard, M.J (ed) for
Australian Government Department of Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities (DSEWPaC) and the National Water Commission (NWC), February 2011
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About this publication
Aquatic ecosystems of tropical northern Australia host a unique and diverse range of water-dependent plants and animals occurring across a range of hydrologic, geomorphic and topographic settings. Many aquatic ecosystems in northern Australia can therefore be considered to be of high ecological value.
To increase knowledge about these aquatic ecosystems, the Australian Government funded the Northern Australia Aquatic Ecological Assets Project as part of the Northern Australia Water Futures Assessment. The project consisted of the following three phases:
- Contributions to the Northern Australia Land and Water Science Review 2009
The project contributed to the Northern Australia Land and Water Science Review 2009 by determining the impact of development alternatives on northern Australia aquatic ecosystems and aquatic biodiversity.
- Broad Scale Assessment
The project conducted a broad scale assessment of aquatic ecological assets across northern Australia. The assessment mapped aquatic ecosystems (assets) across the study region and undertook a trial of the national draft High Ecological Value Aquatic Ecosystems (HEVAE) Framework being developed by the Australian, state and territory governments.
- Fine Scale Assessment
In collaboration with the northern State and Territory jurisdictions and DSEWPaC, the project team held a series of regional expert panel workshops. The purpose of these workshops was to undertake fine scale assessments for key focal regions (or specific catchments) identified by jurisdictions as high priority or planned development areas. The fine scale assessment had a number of key aims, including identifying high priority aquatic ecological assets and understanding ecological thresholds in relation to flow regimes and maintenance of aquatic ecosystem assets.