Commonwealth Marine Reserve (CMR)
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This record provides an overview of the scope and research output of NESP Marine Biodiversity Hub Project D7 - "NESP Hub support for Parks Australia’s Monitoring, Evaluation, Reporting and Improvement System (MERI) for Australian Marine Parks". No data outputs are expected for this project. -------------------- This application is to facilitate Hub engagement with Parks Australia during development and initiation of their Monitoring, Evaluation, Reporting and Improvement (MERI) System for Australian Marine Parks. A key priority for the Marine Parks Branch in the 2019-20 financial year is finalising the Australian Marine Park MERI system. The Marine Biodiversity Hub will play an important role in development and implementation of this system. Hub partners have had previous experience in developing the integrated monitoring framework for the Great Barrier Reef, developing a process for identifying indicators for monitoring Key Ecological Features, and also have collected much of the ecological data that exists within Australian Marine Parks. In discussions with Parks Australia, to ensure the MERI system is optimally integrated with current scientific knowledge and capability, there are a number of tasks and information needs that the Hub is well positioned to provide assistance with, these include: • Review the ‘common language’ proposed for Australian Marine Parks, including natural values and pressures classifications, hierarchies and definitions. • Contribute to the identification of natural values, pressures and human uses within Australian Marine Parks and, where required, provide spatial data layers for incorporation into Parks Australia’s spatial information systems (i.e. Wylie) and other mapping portals. • Review conceptual models developed for each of the key ecosystems across the Australian Marine Park networks. • Review ecological risk assessments for natural values and pressures. • Provide advice on the process and criteria for identifying monitoring and inventory priorities. • Develop detailed conceptual models for areas identified as monitoring priorities. • Contribute to the development of monitoring questions. • Provide advice on the process and selection criteria for identifying appropriate value and pressure indicators (noting that the NESP D6 project is helping to identify appropriate social and economic indicators and measures). • Provide advice on best practice approaches for assessing management effectiveness. • Identify the suitability of existing data sets to support the identified monitoring priorities. • Provide advice on evaluation and reporting including best approaches for using a combination of quantitative data and expert opinion, and to help ensure alignment and consistency across objectives, key evaluation questions and reporting.
This record provides an overview of the scope and research output of NESP Marine Biodiversity Hub Project D3 - "Implementing monitoring of AMPs and the status of marine biodiversity assets on the continental shelf". For specific data outputs from this project, please see child records associated with this metadata. -------------------- There is a significant need to support Parks Australia in the establishment of an inventory and monitoring program for Australian Marine Park (AMP) networks, and ensure it is integrated within broader national monitoring frameworks. The first part of this project provided a national collation all known mapping data from government and industry (including data acquired during CERF and NERP Hubs) to improve understanding of the distribution and extent of this key habitat around Australia, and to identify critical gaps in this knowledge to be filled by targeted surveys. This significantly improved understanding of KEF boundaries and conservation values or assets within Commonwealth Marine Reserves on Australia’s continental shelf. A classification system was developed for these reefs, and matched with refinement of inventory and monitoring approaches to track reef health through time, including standard approaches to SOE understanding and reporting consistent with measures developed for coastal systems within NESP (i.e. see project C2). This also involved collation of all mapping data on non-reef hard substrate, and all non-reef soft substrate, with this information also being available as a significant output. The second part of this project initiates a series of surveys, utilising standard operating procedures (SOPs), to demonstrate a sustainable path for a national survey program. By facilitating national approaches, including a standards-based approach to collecting new marine data, project outcomes will include key steps to assist Parks Australia to implement and initiate an AMP monitoring program, new knowledge to inform AMP management, a national integrated framework for State of Environment (SOE) reporting, and collaboration between State-based and Commonwealth-based programs. Planned Outputs • National-scale map of the distribution and extent of reef/non-reef habitat on the Aus continental shelf • Collation of all available mapping data for the Aus continental shelf • Detailed reports specific to each AMP survey, including a plain English summary • Survey data stored in national databases and portals • New multibeam mapping data from AMP survey areas and adjacent waters • New data on benthic invertebrate cover obtained from AUV imagery surveys • New data on benthic fish abundance obtained by BRUV surveys