Improving our understanding of pressures on the marine environment [ 2015-07-01 - ]

Research Grant

[Cite as]

Researchers: Piers Dunstan (Principal investigator)

Brief description

The marine environment in Australia is influenced by a wide range of different pressures that impact on different parts of the marine ecosystem in different ways. This project aims to assist DoE understand how the spatial distribution of pressures and trends can be applied to decisions under the EPBC Act (acceptability of proposed activities, evaluation of effectiveness of mitigation measures) and how it may assist future marine spatial planning exercises.

The project will involve a re-examination of the pressure analyses undertaken through the marine bioregional planning program and the 2011 SOE Report (marine chapter) and determine whether pressure mapping can enhance those analyses (for instance for those pressures for which data deficiency was identified). It will also examine the strengths and weaknesses of the different pressure assessment methodologies used by both the MBP process and the SOE 2011 process and propose a methodology that can support both processes into the future.

The project will also consider relative impact, and how spatial mapping can assist in understanding both relative and cumulative impact. As an adjunct to the cumulative impact investigation, the project will also investigate how changes in socio-economic valuing of conservation values may influence the degree of investment in understanding and management of cumulative impact. This particular work will further the risk-based approach to cumulative impact that was investigated under the NERP Hub

Notes In addition to the NESP funding, this project is matched by an equivalent amount of in-kind support and co-investment from project partners and collaborators.

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