Regional report cards

Regional report card partnerships are one of a number of activities under the Reef 2050 Long-Term Sustainability Plan and are funded by both the Australian and Queensland governments. They bring together government and local communities including Traditional Owners, industry, farmers and fishers, scientists, tourism operators and conservation groups who have a shared vision for healthy waterways in their region. Each partnership produces an annual report card that outlines the condition of waterways in their region. The data collected also guides management decisions around actions to improve water quality in local waterways that flow to the Reef.

To accommodate issues that are relevant to a specific region, regional report cards are based on subtly different indicators and data sources, but they all seek to:

  • provide a finer scale, regionally-relevant assessment of the ‘health’ status of all waterways in a region
  • assess the status of ecological, environmental, social, economic and cultural values of particular relevance to each region
  • highlight environmental pressures that are best dealt with by local government and catchment management groups
  • provide a linkage between what is happening in the catchments and how this affects the Reef
  • unify the community on waterway health
  • draw on data collected under the Paddock to Reef program and other monitoring programs.

Most partnerships rely heavily on data from outside sources to inform their report cards although Gladstone does some of its own monitoring. Marine monitoring data presented in the regional report cards includes Marine Monitoring Program data used for the Reef water quality report card, but is supplement by locally-relevant data collected by port authorities and the Australian Institute of Marine Science. In this respect, regional report cards are nested within the broader monitoring and reporting program for the Great Barrier Reef.

For more information about the different report cards, read the Report card explainer (PDF, 9.1MB) .

There are five Regional Report Card Partnerships.

Wet Tropics Healthy Waterways Partnership

The Wet Tropics Healthy Waterways Partnership, formed in 2015, involves industry, community organisations, research institutions and all levels of government. The Partnership’s objectives are to coordinate the sharing of data, prioritise management actions and communicate (knowledge and results) to the broader community. The report card covers the area from Bloomfield in the north to the Herbert River in the south and incorporates the Atherton Tablelands. It encompasses nine river catchments from the Daintree to the Herbert, eight estuaries and the adjacent marine environment extending to the eastern boundary of the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park.

Townsville Dry Tropics Partnership for Healthy Waters

The Dry Tropics Partnership for Healthy Waters, formed in 2018, is a collaboration involving community, industry, science, and government – partnering to improve the values of the catchments and Reef. The report card provides  information about three catchments (Black, Ross and Bohle), along with the immediate estuarine and marine environments, the Port of Townsville and Magnetic Island. This partnership is unique as it focuses on the Townsville urban area, the largest urban centre in the Great Barrier Reef catchments.

Mackay-Whitsunday-Isaac Healthy Rivers to Reef Partnership

The Mackay-Whitsunday-Isaac Healthy Rivers to Reef Partnership, formed in 2014, involves partners from community, Traditional Owners, industry, science, tourism and government working together to determine how and where more can be done to look after local waterways. The report card covers the geographic area of the Don, O’Connell, Proserpine, Pioneer and Plane basins; the urban area of Mackay; the ports of Abbot Point, Mackay and Hay Point; marinas; and the coastal marine area. It provides information on environmental, economic, social and stewardship indicators as well as cultural heritage aspects of waterways in the region.

Fitzroy Partnership for River Health

The Fitzroy Partnership for River Health, formed in 2012, is a collective of agriculture, resources, industry, government, research and community interests across the Fitzroy Basin. Partners have a common goal of providing a more complete picture on river health and support this goal by providing funding, resources and contributing water quality and ecosystem health monitoring data through data-sharing arrangements. The report card cover 11 catchments (Nogoa, Comet, Upper Dawson, Lower Dawson, Theresa, Mackenzie, Upper Isaac, Lower Isaac, Callide, Fitzroy, Connors) and the Fitzroy estuary. It includes results for ecosystem health, agriculture and drinking water suitability in the Rockhampton Regional Council and Central Highland Regional Council areas.

Gladstone Healthy Harbour Partnership

The Gladstone Healthy Harbour Partnership, formed in 2013, includes community members, traditional owners, industry, science, government and harbour management. The report card is an independent report that assesses the environmental health of Gladstone Harbour and the social, cultural and economic health of the Gladstone local government area.