The Mackay-Whitsunday Healthy Rivers to Reef Partnership (the Partnership) was established in 2014 to produce this report card for the region, which covers from Home Hill in the north to Flaggy Rock Creek in the south, including the freshwater and marine environment (to the eastern boundary of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park).
After the release of the Mackay-Whitsunday 2014 Pilot Report Card in October 2015 a comprehensive review was undertaken of the indicators, methodology and scoring undertaken to obtain the report card results. This review resulted in a number of improvements to the report card methodologies.
To allow for direct comparison of results between reporting years, the Mackay-Whitsunday 2014 Pilot Report Card results have been back-calculated using the improved approach. Due to the improvements, there are minor differences to the original Mackay-Whitsunday 2014 Pilot Report Card results. The adopted improvements and how they impacted on the results of the Mackay-Whitsunday 2014 Pilot Report Card can be found in the 2015 technical reports.
You can now view the Mackay-Whitsunday 2014 Pilot Report Card results that have been calculated using the improved methods. These results are directly comparable to the 2015 report card.
The objectives for the report card are:
- To communicate information effectively and at a relevant scale to the broader community on waterway health issues with scientific integrity, independence and transparency
- To support decision making for management activities and interventions, model outcomes and report on effectiveness of those interventions
- Be specific to the Mackay-Whitsunday region and consistent with other regional waterway report cards including south east Queensland, Gladstone and Fitzroy
- Provide effective, coordinated, strategic and transparent advice to ensure cost effective development of an annual report card and associated catchment improvement solutions
- Consolidate and integrate outputs from ambient and event monitoring programs as well as different modelling platforms
- Provide scientific information that may assist in improving or maintaining the environmental, social and economic values of the Don, Proserpine, O’Connell, Pioneer and Plane basins, rivers and adjacent Great Barrier Reef
- Inform planning and delivery activities of the Partners in response to the findings of the report card
- Provide scientific information to feed into planning activities of natural resource management bodies, councils, and other partners
- Build upon, complement and enhance existing efforts of members
The Role of the Independent Scientific Panel
To ensure the validity of both the assessment methodology and the data used in the pilot report card, review by the Reef Plan Independent Science Panel (ISP) has been included at key points during the development of the report card. Specifically, the ISP has reviewed the assessment methodologies for all data included in the pilot report card. Further details on the original assessment methodologies and data can be found in the technical reports, which accompany the pilot report card.
The ISP made a number of recommendations that would improve subsequent report cards, and these were considered during the review of the Mackay-Whitsunday 2014 Pilot Report Card. The adopted improvements and how they impacted on the results of the Mackay-Whitsunday 2014 Pilot Report Card can be found in the 2015 technical reports.