Regional Report Cards
Our partnership was formed in 2012, tasked with developing the first regional Queensland report card to monitor the ecosystem health of waterways draining to the Great Barrier Reef lagoon, joining the existing South East Queensland waterways model. Today, there are five Queensland regional report cards that work to inform management decisions to improve water quality and ecosystem health, and raise awareness of waterway conditions in each region.
The Five Regional Report Cards
Science shows improving the quality of water flowing to the Great Barrier Reef is critical to building its resilience and enabling it to recover. The Reef Water Quality Report Card reports on progress towards 2025 targets for identified reef catchments, as well as wetland condition and inshore marine health. Mid and outer shelf condition are less directly influenced by water quality from the catchments and are not reported here.
To learn more about the relationship between Reef Water Quality and the five regional report cards download the Report Card Explainer. To explore more about individual regional report cards please visit:
- Fitzroy Partnership for River Health
- Gladstone Healthy Harbour Partnership
- Mackay-Whitsunday-Isaac Healthy Rivers to Reef Partnership
- Townsville Dry Tropics Partnership for Health Waterways
- Wet Tropics Waterways
Reef Regional Partnerships Report Card
In 2020, external evaluators Darwinian Consulting were tasked with producing the first evaluation report card for the collective reef partnerships. Fitzroy Partnership for River Health scored the highest of all of the partnerships, with a B+. For more information on how this grade was determined, areas of success and items for improvement for Fitzroy Partnership and the other partnerships, download the ‘What’s our grade? Reef Regional Partnerships Report Card.
Report cards are commonly used in waterways management as a powerful and simple way to communicate science and monitoring results to a broad audience. To be meaningful, report cards need to be fit for purpose, tackling the most important issues for a given area.
Another report card is the Reef Water Quality Protection Plan Report Card. The Reef Plan Report Card covers all the Great Barrier Reef regions and the Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area itself. While it includes the Fitzroy Basin, it is different to the Fitzroy Partnership Report Card as it focuses solely on the impact of diffuse source pollution from broadscale agriculture on the reef and directly measures progress towards the Reef Plan goals and targets.
The Fitzroy Partnership report card complements these other report cards and in many cases utilises the same information to ensure consistency and efficient use of monitoring resources.
Building on Other Successful Approaches
Our partnership has drawn on aspects of established monitoring initiatives such as the South East Queensland Healthy Waterways Partnership and the Reef Water Quality Protection Plan Reporting, which have proven successful in providing access to larger pools of data and better information to guide management and policy decisions.
However, given that the Fitzroy Basin is a different system with a diversity of organisations with a stake in waterway health, our partnership is different and called for its own unique approach. With this in mind the Fitzroy Partnership for River Health implemented an innovative approach tailored to our unique set of needs and opportunities with the vision of delivering a world class integrated waterway health monitoring and reporting program.