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The Voluntary Mechanism for Stormwater Quality Management (the mechanism) is seen to provide an innovative, alternative, regional best management approach for managing operational phase stormwater pollutants from new developments that meets the requirements of the Urban Stormwater Quality Management Plan for Mackay and the State Planning Policy (SPP). It reflects the “Living Waterways” policy and has been supported by Department Environment and Heritage Protection & Department Infrastructure, Local Government and Planning.

It provides developers with options to contribute financially to catchment based (regional) stormwater quality improvement projects to offset part or all of their stormwater quality treatment, which would otherwise be required to take place within a development site.


The Mackay region is characterised by old cleared farm sites (e.g. sugar cane, cattle grazing) and/or in low lying coastal zones where problematic soils may occur. There are significant regional water quality and ecosystem issues such as poor natural wetland systems or degraded waterways that would benefit from restoration. In this context, benefits have been identified from both a developer and community point of view to provide a regional approach to urban stormwater management by creating a mechanism to collect contributions from developers to deliver stormwater management on targeted regional sites.

On-ground implementation projects are currently being delivered in the same catchment as the contribution was received. These implementation projects take into account local community interests and integration, liveability, amenity, aesthetics, the economy and practicality in a local setting in addition to water quality and environmental benefits.

For further information on MRC’s stormwater case studies please contact Luke Galea luke.galea@mackay.qld.gov.au

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