The 2016 report card represents the third annual waterway health report card for the region. The primary objective of the report card is to effectively communicate to the community scientifically sound and independent information at a relevant scale. Check out our interactive results page. You can view the report document card here.
Key messages of the report card:
- The Mackay-Whitsunday region was severely impacted by Tropical Cyclone Debbie in 2017. These impacts will be reported on in the 2017 report card.
- Rainfall is a key driver of water quality and two years of below average rainfall means scores for water quality in freshwater and estuaries are similar to last year, with pesticides remaining a key issue in the Pioneer and Plane basins.
- In the Whitsunday inshore marine zone, water quality scores from sampling at long-term monitoring sites have decreased from moderate to poor. Research is currently underway to help us understand this situation.
- Seagrass and coral habitat extent is stable, despite poor to moderate water quality. The potential for these habitats to recover after severe disturbance is uncertain due to the poor condition of resilience indicators, such as reproductive capacity in seagrass and rate of growth in coral.
- For the Whitsunday inshore marine zone the improvement from a D to a C score reflects only a marginal overall increase. This is because two out of three indicators have improved, however the third has declined.
- Urban stewardship scores have improved from the last report card due to improvements in implementing the planning and management guidelines for urban development.
If you would like hard copies of the report card, please contact us.