Pumicestone Passage makes the grade in latest HLW Report Card
Pumicestone Passage has earned an A-minus for its excellent environmental condition in the latest Healthy Land and Water Report Card unveiled today at the Bribie Island Seaside Museum.
The waterway, which garnered a B-plus rating in 2016, was rated excellent overall for the first time by not-for-profit Healthy Land and Water (HLW) following significant improvements to the health of freshwater streams and estuarine water quality in the catchment.
Each year the HLW Report Card grades the health of catchments across South East Queensland, including the Pumicestone Passage and Pine and Caboolture catchments, using extensive computer modelling and field monitoring.
Moreton Bay Regional Council Mayor Allan Sutherland said the strong showing for Pumicestone Passage demonstrated the combined effort of Moreton Bay and Sunshine Coast councils, local businesses, community groups and residents to deliver the 2013-2016 Pumicestone Passage Action Plan.
“Since we launched the action plan in four years ago, 36 major projects have been delivered with the goal of enhancing the passage’s habitat, water quality, and social and economic benefit,” Mayor Sutherland said.
“For the health of the passage to go from a B-minus to an A-minus in the space of two years is an incredible feat and we need to continue to ride the momentum.”
Mayor Sutherland said council and stakeholders would now look to implement a further 32 projects in the recently adopted 2017-2020 action plan to further enhance the passage’s environmental habitats and biodiversity.
Division 2 Councillor Peter Flannery said estuarine water quality was also rated excellent in the Caboolture Catchment and freshwater health along the Pine Catchment also improved, with both catchments maintaining their respective B and B-minus grades.
“It’s encouraging to see that water quality continues to improve, and we certainly have no intention of getting complacent now,” Cr Flannery said
“Whether it’s the Wamuran Bushcare Group removing more than 1,800m2 of weeds along the Caboolture River, or the installation of a new fishway at Brendale to help native fish navigate the South Pine Rivers, it’s all hands on deck when it comes to improving our waterways.
“There’s still work to do, but it is good to know we are on the right track.”
For more information about the 2017 HLW Report Card visit: http://hlw.org.au/
Moreton Bay Region results in the 2017 Healthy Waterways Report Card include:
- Pumicestone Passage, A- (Last year: B+)
o Overall environmental condition is excellent and pollutant loads remains excellent
o Freshwater stream health improved from good to excellent
o Estuarine water quality remains excellent, improving slight due to lower turbidity in the north
o 4 star rating for social and economic benefit
- Caboolture Catchment, B (Last year: B)
o Estuarine water quality improved from good to excellent due to lower chlorophyll-a
o Overall environmental condition, riparian condition and freshwater stream health remains good
o Community very highly satisfied with local waterways
o 3 star rating for social and economic benefit
- Pine Catchment, B- (Last year: B-)
o Social and economic benefit improved to 3.5 stars from 3 stars in 2016
o Overall environmental conditions remains good
o Freshwater stream health improved due to an increase in freshwater bug and fish community health
o Riparian extent remains fair
- Stanley River, B- (Last year: B)
- Overall condition is good but slightly declined due to a decrease in freshwater stream health.
- Social and economic benefit improved to 3.5 stars from 3 stars with the community very highly satisfied with their waterways, including accessibility and usability.
- Western Bay (Deception Bay), B (Last year: B)
o Remains in good condition with excellent water quality and moderate mud content.
- Overall Moreton Bay, A- (Last year: B+)
- Conditions meet guidelines for most of the reporting area and most critical habitats are intact.