Estuarine and marine ecosystems assessment summary

N.B. you are viewing the archived 2015 report.

Return to the current 2017 report.

State

Key finding—Condition of estuarine ecosystem health

Queensland's estuarine aquatic ecosystems vary significantly in condition. Some are in good to very good condition while others do not meet standards for water quality.

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Indicator: Condition of estuarine ecosystem health
Report card Assessment grade Confidence in grade Confidence in trend
Great Barrier Reef report cardn/an/an/a
Healthy Waterways South East Queensland report cardn/an/an/a
Fitzroy Basin report card

Grade: Good; trend: grade trending upwardsTrend in report card

Overall grade applies to freshwater and estuarine ecosystem health only.

100% confidence in grade100%

100% confidence in trend100%

Gladstone Harbour report card

Grade: Moderate; trend: no change to report card gradeNo change to report card grade

Overall grade applies toestuarine and marine ecosystem health only.

100% confidence in grade100%

100% confidence in trend100%

Mackay-Whitsunday report cardn/an/an/a
Condamine Catchment report cardn/an/an/a
QCatchment Bulloo n/an/an/a
QCatchment Paroo n/an/an/a
QCatchment Warrego n/an/an/a
QCatchment Nebine n/an/an/a
QCatchment Wet Tropics n/an/an/a
QCatchment Lake Eyre n/an/a n/a

Key finding—Condition of ecological processes

At a reef-wide scale, most ecological processes are considered to be in good condition; however the inshore southern two-thirds of the region are in decline.

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Indicator: Condition of ecological processes
Report cardAssessment gradeConfidence in gradeConfidence in trend
Great Barrier Reef

Grade: Good; trend: grade trending downwardsTrend in report card

50% confidence50%

50% confidence in trend50%

Key finding—Condition of marine ecosystem health

Queensland’s marine environments vary significantly in condition. Some are in good to very good condition while others do not meet standards for water quality.

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Indicator: Condition of marine ecosystem health
Report card Assessment grade Confidence in grade Confidence in trend
Great Barrier Reef report card

Grade: Poor; trend: no change to report card gradeNo change to report card grade

100% confidence in grade100%

100% confidence in trend100%

Healthy Waterways South East Queensland report cardn/an/an/a
Fitzroy Basin report cardn/an/an/a
Gladstone Harbour report card

Grade: Moderate; trend: no change to report card gradeNo change to report card grade

Overall grade applies to estuarine and marine ecosystem health only.

100% confidence in grade100%

100% confidence in trend100%

Mackay-Whitsunday report cardn/an/an/a
Condamine Catchment report cardn/an/an/a
QCatchment Bulloo n/an/an/a
QCatchment Paroo n/an/an/a
QCatchment Warrego n/an/an/a
QCatchment Nebine n/an/an/a
QCatchment Wet Tropics n/an/an/a
QCatchment Lake Eyre n/an/a n/a

Pressure

Key finding—Climate change pressure on the Great Barrier Reef

At a reef-wide scale, climate related variables are already having an effect, and are predicted to continue to have far-reaching consequences for the reef ecosystem.

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Indicator: Climate change
Report cardAssessment gradeConfidence in gradeConfidence in trend
Great Barrier Reef

Grade: Very poor; trend: grade trending downwardsTrend in report card

100% confidence in grade100%

100% confidence in trend100%

Key finding—Coastal development pressure on the Great Barrier Reef

Changes to coastal habitat and reductions in connectivity are having an increasing effect on the region's ecosystem.

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Indicator: Coastal development
Report cardAssessment gradeConfidence in gradeConfidence in trend
Great Barrier Reef

Grade: Poor; trend: grade trending downwardsTrend in report card

100% confidence in grade100%

100% confidence in trend100%

Key finding—Direct use pressure on the Great Barrier Reef

At a reef-wide scale, direct use of the region is a significant economic contributor and its impact on the region’s ecosystem is projected to increase with population growth.

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Indicator: Direct use
Report card Assessment grade Confidence in grade Confidence in trend
Great Barrier Reef

Grade: Good; trend: grade trending downwardsTrend in report card

50% confidence in grade50%

50% confidence in trend50%

Key finding—Land-based run-off pressure on the Great Barrier Reef

Declining marine water quality is one of the most significant threats to the reef however agricultural practices are improving, resulting in reductions in land-based run-off entering the region.

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Indicator: Land-based run-off
Report card Assessment grade Confidence in grade Confidence in trend
Great Barrier Reef

Grade: Poor; trend: grade trending upwardsTrend in report card

100% confidence in grade100%

100% confidence in trend100%

Key finding—Crown-of-thorns starfish pressure on the Great Barrier Reef

Evidence suggests increased nutrient loads contribute to more frequent outbreaks of crown-of-thorns starfish—a major predator of coral—resulting in coral cover decline.

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Indicator: Crown-of-thorns starfish
Report cardAssessment gradeConfidence in gradeConfidence in trend
Great Barrier Reef

Grade: Very poor; trend: grade trending downwardsTrend in report card

50% confidence in grade50%

50% confidence in trend50%