Effectiveness of marine management

Component
Summary
Grade
Ineffective Partially effective Effective Very effective
Confidence
In Grade In Trend
Comparability
To previous years

Understanding of climate variability and its management is reasonably high and improving

Year(s): 
2016
3
Improving
Confidence (in grade): 
Adequate
Confidence (in trend): 
Adequate
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not assessed

Planning for icons such as the Great Barrier Reef is continuing, and commercial fisheries are aware of the need to plan around climate variability. Elsewhere, efforts are patchy.

Year(s): 
2016
3
Stable
Confidence (in grade): 
Adequate
Confidence (in trend): 
Adequate
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not assessed

Inputs: Support for research required operates on timescales that are ineffective for meeting long-term goals and sustainability, thereby undermining effective management

Year(s): 
2016
2
Stable
Confidence (in grade): 
Adequate
Confidence (in trend): 
Adequate
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not assessed

Processes: Management tools and approaches exist, and are applied in some cases. Strong management frameworks are required for long-term environmental health.

Year(s): 
2016
2
Deteriorating
Confidence (in grade): 
Somewhat adequate
Confidence (in trend): 
Somewhat adequate
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not assessed

Outputs: Regulatory frameworks are underdeveloped and are not adaptive to interactions between economic development and sustainable ecosystems, resulting in gradual long-term environmental declines

Year(s): 
2016
2
Deteriorating
Confidence (in grade): 
Somewhat adequate
Confidence (in trend): 
Somewhat adequate
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not assessed

Outcomes: Further policy and management controls are required to address declining environmental health and interactions between climate variability and climate change

Year(s): 
2016
2
Deteriorating
Confidence (in grade): 
Somewhat adequate
Confidence (in trend): 
Somewhat adequate
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not assessed

Climate change

This assessment summary component has changed from 2011.

  • Impacts are covered under pressures, this section is discussing management, also to standardise presentation across the assessment summaries (no other categories include 'impacts')

The original 2011 summary, grade, trend and confidence levels have been replicated here to assist comparison of changes between reporting cycles.

Understanding: Strong institutional partnerships and high-quality research are progressing understanding

Year(s): 
2016
3
Improving
Confidence (in grade): 
Adequate
Confidence (in trend): 
Adequate
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Somewhat comparable

Understanding: Strong institutional partnerships are being formed to develop a comprehensive and agreed knowledge base about drivers—includes knowledge of physical processes; knowledge of biological process is lagging. Cross-discipline synthesis programs are developing, as yet embryonic

Year(s): 
2011
3
Improving
Confidence (in grade): 
Limited
Confidence (in trend): 
Limited
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not assessed

Planning: Recognition of the impacts of climate change is becoming widespread; however, it is only beginning to be incorporated into the planning of effective management and mitigation initiatives

Year(s): 
2016
2
Stable
Confidence (in grade): 
Somewhat adequate
Confidence (in trend): 
Somewhat adequate
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Somewhat comparable

Planning: Limited preparedness or anticipation in most affected assets and systems

Year(s): 
2011
2
Stable
Confidence (in grade): 
Limited
Confidence (in trend): 
Limited
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not assessed

Inputs: Although resources exist for planning, support for policy and resourcing for action is limited

Year(s): 
2016
2
Stable
Confidence (in grade): 
Somewhat adequate
Confidence (in trend): 
Somewhat adequate
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Somewhat comparable

Inputs: Few resources are devoted to identifying the issues, or to strategies for responses or mitigation of impacts

Year(s): 
2011
2
Stable
Confidence (in grade): 
Limited
Confidence (in trend): 
Limited
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not assessed

Processes: Transitioning from planning to action is slow, with widespread acceptance of the need for active and effective management needed

Year(s): 
2016
2
Stable
Confidence (in grade): 
Limited
Confidence (in trend): 
Limited
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Somewhat comparable

Processes: Very limited development of management tools or approaches to adapt in an integrated manner to climate impacts

Year(s): 
2011
2
Stable
Confidence (in grade): 
Limited
Confidence (in trend): 
Limited
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not assessed

Outputs: Lack of action, combined with the accelerating rate of climate change, are delivering a progressive worsening of the marine environment

Year(s): 
2016
1
Deteriorating
Confidence (in grade): 
Limited
Confidence (in trend): 
Limited
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Somewhat comparable

Outputs: Business as usual’strategies prevail, except in coastal flood-prone lands; few strategic responses to provide for maintenance of biodiversity values

Year(s): 
2011
1
Unclear
Confidence (in grade): 
Limited
Confidence (in trend): 
Low
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not assessed

Outcomes: Continuing failure to recognise and manage the effects of climate change runs the risk of irreversible damage to the marine environment

Year(s): 
2016
1
Deteriorating
Confidence (in grade): 
Very limited
Confidence (in trend): 
Very limited
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Somewhat comparable

Outcomes: Habitat and species declines are beginning to become evident, with limited preparedness to adapt

Year(s): 
2011
1
Unclear
Confidence (in grade): 
Limited
Confidence (in trend): 
Low
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not assessed

Commercial fishing

This assessment summary component has changed from 2011.

  • The 2011 assessment has been divided into commercial and recreational components to support comprehensive assessment of the pressures, monitoring processes and management structures associated with each for the purposes of the report. 

The original 2011 summary, grade, trend and confidence levels have been replicated here to assist comparison of changes between reporting cycles.

Understanding of fisheries and effective management frameworks is reasonably high and improving

Year(s): 
2016
3
Improving
Confidence (in grade): 
Adequate
Confidence (in trend): 
Adequate
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not comparable

Understanding: Limited context is applied, mainly focused on resource use; limited recognition of trophic or cumulative impacts

Year(s): 
2011
2
Stable
Confidence (in grade): 
Limited
Confidence (in trend): 
Limited
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not assessed

Planning: Improved planning processes directed towards research and risk-based assessment processes are providing more robustCarrie Dehaan outcomes

Year(s): 
2016
3
Improving
Confidence (in grade): 
Adequate
Confidence (in trend): 
Adequate
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not comparable

Planning: EPBC Act assessments cover more than 120 fisheries. Marine bioregional planning for Commonwealth waters is committed to considering pressures, including fishing. State-based fisheries legislation is generally committed to ecological outcomes, as well as economic ones. However, there is no comprehensive national assessment or reporting system for fisheries sustainability or environmental impacts; no national mechanism for assessing environmental outcomes; no national system for information capture across environmental aspects

Year(s): 
2011
2
Stable
Confidence (in grade): 
Limited
Confidence (in trend): 
Limited
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not assessed

Inputs: Greater use of technology for data collection informs management decisions and measures the trajectory of trends over time

Year(s): 
2016
3
Improving
Confidence (in grade): 
Adequate
Confidence (in trend): 
Adequate
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not comparable

Inputs: Limited mainly to resource management systems, not environmental impacts

Year(s): 
2011
2
Improving
Confidence (in grade): 
Limited
Confidence (in trend): 
Limited
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not assessed

Processes: Improved processes have been developed to expand the range of fishery assessment tools, with an increased use of risk-based approaches

Year(s): 
2016
3
Stable
Confidence (in grade): 
Adequate
Confidence (in trend): 
Adequate
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not comparable

Processes: Strong systems are in place for management of commercial fishing impacts on habitat and EPBC Act–listed species, but limited management of trophic impacts. Limited management of recreational fishing. Many jurisdictions, including the Commonwealth, are moving to improve ecosystem-based fisheries management approaches

Year(s): 
2011
2
Improving
Confidence (in grade): 
Limited
Confidence (in trend): 
Limited
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not assessed

Outputs: Assessment output is provided by annual Fishery Status Reports and biennial State of Key Australian Fish Stocks Report for national commercial fisheries. State/territory fishery agency reports provide assessment outputs for state/territory jurisdictions

Year(s): 
2016
3
Stable
Confidence (in grade): 
Adequate
Confidence (in trend): 
Adequate
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not comparable

Outputs: Good achievement of commercial fisheries programs; limited achievement in recreational fishing management; strong growth of resource certification systems in the private sector

Year(s): 
2011
2
Improving
Confidence (in grade): 
Limited
Confidence (in trend): 
Limited
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not assessed

Outcomes: Improvements in data gathering and reporting direct resources towards commercial fishing operations that pose the highest risk to the marine environment are seen

Year(s): 
2016
3
Stable
Confidence (in grade): 
Adequate
Confidence (in trend): 
Adequate
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not comparable

Outcomes: Fisheries management achieves limited environmental outcomes: all species that can be fished are held at population sizes significantly below pristine levels under current management systems. Trophic structures in the oceans are heavily impacted—ecosystem resilience to trophic impacts, cumulative impacts and potential time to recovery are uncertain

Year(s): 
2011
2
Stable
Confidence (in grade): 
Limited
Confidence (in trend): 
Limited
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not assessed

Recreational fishing


This assessment summary component has changed from 2011.

  • The 2011 assessment has been divided into commercial and recreational components to support comprehensive assessment of the pressures, monitoring processes and management structures associated with each for the purposes of the report.

The original 2011 summary, grade, trend and confidence levels have been replicated here to assist comparison of changes between reporting cycles.

Understanding: National and state/territory surveys have been done, although understanding of overall impacts on stock status is not always known. In some jurisdictions, ecosystem-based approaches include understanding of risks to species, habitats and ecosystem structure

Year(s): 
2016
2
Improving
Confidence (in grade): 
Adequate
Confidence (in trend): 
Adequate
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not comparable

Understanding: Limited context is applied, mainly focused on resource use; limited recognition of trophic or cumulative impacts

Year(s): 
2011
2
Stable
Confidence (in grade): 
Limited
Confidence (in trend): 
Limited
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not assessed

Planning: Most jurisdictions have formal recreational fisheries management capacity and most incorporate ecosystems-based approach to assessing risk, with an increasing focus on habitat and fishery improvement

Year(s): 
2016
3
Improving
Confidence (in grade): 
Adequate
Confidence (in trend): 
Adequate
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not comparable

Planning: EPBC Act assessments cover more than 120 fisheries. Marine bioregional planning for Commonwealth waters is committed to considering pressures, including fishing. State-based fisheries legislation is generally committed to ecological outcomes, as well as economic ones. However, there is no comprehensive national assessment or reporting system for fisheries sustainability or environmental impacts; no national mechanism for assessing environmental outcomes; no national system for information capture across environmental aspects

Year(s): 
2011
2
Stable
Confidence (in grade): 
Limited
Confidence (in trend): 
Limited
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not assessed

Inputs: Survey data include catch-and-effort data, and some social/behavioural and economic information. Information gathered varies across jurisdictions, limiting aggregation. Efforts to develop methods for national surveys are being developed

Year(s): 
2016
3
Improving
Confidence (in grade): 
Adequate
Confidence (in trend): 
Adequate
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not comparable

Inputs: Limited mainly to resource management systems, not environmental impacts

Year(s): 
2011
2
Improving
Confidence (in grade): 
Limited
Confidence (in trend): 
Limited
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not assessed

Process: All jurisdictions rely on surveys for collecting catch-and-effort information. In some jurisdictions, these data are incorporated into assessments and management frameworks, allowing management frameworks to be updated

Year(s): 
2016
2
Improving
Confidence (in grade): 
Adequate
Confidence (in trend): 
Adequate
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not comparable

Processes: Strong systems are in place for management of commercial fishing impacts on habitat and EPBC Act–listed species, but limited management of trophic impacts. Limited management of recreational fishing. Many jurisdictions, including the Commonwealth, are moving to improve ecosystem-based fisheries management approaches

Year(s): 
2011
2
Improving
Confidence (in grade): 
Limited
Confidence (in trend): 
Limited
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not assessed

Outputs: National and jurisdictional survey data and reports can be used to provide information across species and stock ranges, and help inform the development or updating of control limits. However, there has been little, if any, coordination of surveys between jurisdictions.

Year(s): 
2016
2
Improving
Confidence (in grade): 
Adequate
Confidence (in trend): 
Adequate
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not comparable

Outputs: Good achievement of commercial fisheries programs; limited achievement in recreational fishing management; strong growth of resource certification systems in the private sector

Year(s): 
2011
2
Improving
Confidence (in grade): 
Limited
Confidence (in trend): 
Limited

Outcomes: In some jurisdictions, recovery of some previously overfished species is occurring. In others, catches continue to be larger than commercial catches, and stock assessments do not include recreational catches

Year(s): 
2016
2
Improving
Confidence (in grade): 
Adequate
Confidence (in trend): 
Adequate
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not comparable

Outcomes: Fisheries management achieves limited environmental outcomes: all species that can be fished are held at population sizes significantly below pristine levels under current management systems. Trophic structures in the oceans are heavily impacted—ecosystem resilience to trophic impacts, cumulative impacts and potential time to recovery are uncertain

Year(s): 
2011
2
Stable
Confidence (in grade): 
Limited
Confidence (in trend): 
Limited
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not assessed

Understanding: There has been a gradual shift from the well-recognised need to understand sustainable traditional harvest levels towards building on-ground capacity and solutions for quantification

Year(s): 
2016
2
Improving
Confidence (in grade): 
Limited
Confidence (in trend): 
Limited
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not assessed

Planning: Indigenous-driven planning is growing, yet it is not consistently linked to a framework that assesses the performance of stated objectives

Year(s): 
2016
2
Improving
Confidence (in grade): 
Limited
Confidence (in trend): 
Limited
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not assessed

Inputs: Further progress on consistent recording and storing of data on traditional harvesting is needed before management frameworks can be informed about the impact of this use

Year(s): 
2016
2
Improving
Confidence (in grade): 
Limited
Confidence (in trend): 
Limited
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not assessed

Processes: An extensive range of Indigenous-based initiatives are advancing to support the management of marine resources; assessing their performance is the next increment for effective management

Year(s): 
2016
2
Improving
Confidence (in grade): 
Limited
Confidence (in trend): 
Limited
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not assessed

Outputs: Improved community involvement for developing protocols for cultural resource management is empowering Indigenous people to make more informed decisions about regulatory solutions

Year(s): 
2016
2
Improving
Confidence (in grade): 
Limited
Confidence (in trend): 
Limited
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not assessed

Outcomes: Indigenous-driven planning and management achieves higher environmental outcomes. Rolling-forward programs to meet future priorities and challenges is effective

Year(s): 
2016
2
Improving
Confidence (in grade): 
Limited
Confidence (in trend): 
Limited
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not assessed

Marine oil and gas exploration and production

This assessment summary component has changed from 2011.

  •  The assessment title has been revised to to maintain distinction between land and marine environments for the purposes of the report

The original 2011 summary, grade, trend and confidence levels have been replicated here to assist comparison of changes between reporting cycles.

Understanding of the impacts of exploration, production and decommissioning activities of the oil and gas industry have increased over the last decade

Year(s): 
2016
3
Improving
Confidence (in grade): 
Adequate
Confidence (in trend): 
Adequate
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Somewhat comparable

Understanding: Impacts of the exploration, production and transport phases of the industry are well understood, although specific issues about dispersants and medium-term effects are yet to be resolved

Year(s): 
2011
3
Improving
Confidence (in grade): 
Limited
Confidence (in trend): 
Limited
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not assessed

Planning: A single national regulator is in place for oil and gas operations in Australian waters where most activity is currently occurring, individual states and the Northern Territory regulate across coastal waters

Year(s): 
2016
3
Improving
Confidence (in grade): 
Adequate
Confidence (in trend): 
Adequate
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Somewhat comparable

Planning: Major lack of a regional environmental planning and assessment framework with relevant constraints on development

Year(s): 
2011
1
Stable
Confidence (in grade): 
Limited
Confidence (in trend): 
Limited
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not assessed

Inputs: Data on operations in Australian waters is collected by the national regulator and analysed for trends across industry and used to inform future environmental management improvements and regulatory activity; inputs at the state/territory level are less clear

Year(s): 
2016
3
Improving
Confidence (in grade): 
Adequate
Confidence (in trend): 
Adequate
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Somewhat comparable

Inputs: Substantial resources are applied to the impact issues

Year(s): 
2011
3
Stable
Confidence (in grade): 
Limited
Confidence (in trend): 
Limited
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not assessed

Process: The national regulatory framework for Australian waters is subject to an independent operational review of its performance, processes at the state/territory level are less clear

Year(s): 
2016
3
Improving
Confidence (in grade): 
Adequate
Confidence (in trend): 
Adequate
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Somewhat comparable

Processes: Individual sites are approved based on production and economic requirements rather than environmental constraints; there appears to be only limited cumulative impact assessment. Site-based processes are good, although human error continues to have major consequences and needs much better supervision of compliance

Year(s): 
2011
2
Stable
Confidence (in grade): 
Limited
Confidence (in trend): 
Limited
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not assessed

Outputs: The assessment and inspection of oil and gas activities in Australian waters by the national regulator is used to inform required areas of industry improvement, outputs at the state/territory level are less clear.

Year(s): 
2016
3
Improving
Confidence (in grade): 
Adequate
Confidence (in trend): 
Adequate
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Somewhat comparable

Outputs: Strong regulatory regime at the site level, although lacking in onsite compliance systems; few effective outputs at the region level

Year(s): 
2011
3
Improving
Confidence (in grade): 
Limited
Confidence (in trend): 
Limited
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not assessed

Outcomes: An increased level of regulatory oversight for operations in Australian waters, covering the majority of activity, is supporting effective management of offshore oil and gas activities.

Year(s): 
2016
3
Stable
Confidence (in grade): 
Adequate
Confidence (in trend): 
Adequate
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Somewhat comparable

Outcomes: Increasing rate of disturbance of marine mammals, and risk of accidents and oil spills due to large number of seabed and land-based structures; increasing exploration, construction activity and ship movements; and remoteness from regulatory control centres

Year(s): 
2011
2
Stable
Confidence (in grade): 
Limited
Confidence (in trend): 
Limited
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not assessed

Marine mining and industry

This assessment summary component has changed from 2011.

  • The assessment title has been revised to to maintain distinction between land and marine environments for the purposes of the report

The original 2011 summary, grade, trend and confidence levels have been replicated here to assist comparison of changes between reporting cycles.

Understanding of likely environmental impacts while expected to be local in nature remain unclear with only ad hoc baseline information available.

Year(s): 
2016
1
Stable
Confidence (in grade): 
Limited
Confidence (in trend): 
Limited
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Somewhat comparable

Understanding: Impact issues are clear, although cumulative effects are poorly understood

Year(s): 
2011
4
Improving
Confidence (in grade): 
Limited
Confidence (in trend): 
Limited
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not assessed

Planning: Resource assessment and planning is ad hoc and conducted on local scales, driven by commercial constraints and community pressures

Year(s): 
2016
2
Stable
Confidence (in grade): 
Limited
Confidence (in trend): 
Limited
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Somewhat comparable

Planning: In relation to marine issues, this is mainly ad hoc, driven by commercial constraints; resource projects are not denied on environmental impact grounds; there is little consideration of regional cumulative impacts

Year(s): 
2011
2
Improving
Confidence (in grade): 
Limited
Confidence (in trend): 
Limited
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not assessed

Inputs: Limited data are available. International studies and established marine mining codes of conduct can inform understanding and planning

Year(s): 
2016
2
Stable
Confidence (in grade): 
Limited
Confidence (in trend): 
Limited
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Somewhat comparable

Inputs: Site-based inputs are substantial, and there is substantial monitoring of site impacts

Year(s): 
2011
2
Stable
Confidence (in grade): 
Limited
Confidence (in trend): 
Limited
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not assessed

Processes: Australian Government and state/territory regulatory framework largely untested except where the marine mining is established. State/territory-level decisions limited to temporary moratoria.

Year(s): 
2016
2
Stable
Confidence (in grade): 
Limited
Confidence (in trend): 
Limited
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Somewhat comparable

Processes: Shoreline and marine-based structures are heavily regulated and subjected to site-based assessments to minimise local impacts

Year(s): 
2011
3
Stable
Confidence (in grade): 
Limited
Confidence (in trend): 
Limited
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not assessed

Outputs: Established operations have management programs; proposed operations have only desktop analysis. Limited research outputs exist (bathymetric mapping, benthic surveys etc.)

Year(s): 
2016
1
Stable
Confidence (in grade): 
Limited
Confidence (in trend): 
Limited
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Somewhat comparable

Outputs: Increasing management programs for water, air and land pollution; limited management of cumulative impacts, alienation of coastal habitats for infrastructure requirements, or alterations to water and sediment regimes in adjacent areas

Year(s): 
2011
2
Stable
Confidence (in grade): 
Limited
Confidence (in trend): 
Limited
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not assessed

Outcomes: Established operations mitigate for local impacts, though not cumulative impacts

Year(s): 
2016
2
Stable
Confidence (in grade): 
Limited
Confidence (in trend): 
Limited
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Somewhat comparable

Outcomes: Modern industry and mining have limited local area impacts, except where the resource itself is mined, such as marine sands. However, cumulative impacts of infrastructure are significant, and risks (such as pollution) are increased by intensification, with demonstrated impacts on local habitats and species

Year(s): 
2011
2
Stable
Confidence (in grade): 
Limited
Confidence (in trend): 
Limited
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not assessed

Marine vessel activity

This assessment summary component has changed from 2011.

  • The assessment title has been revised to support a comprehensive assessment of commercial and recreational marine vessels for the purposes of the report.

The original 2011 summary, grade, trend and confidence levels have been replicated here to assist comparison of changes between reporting cycles.

Understanding: There is currently reasonably good understanding of impacts associated with groundings, pollution, and introduction of marine species, with less understanding of impacts associated with on-going low level noise and vessel strike

Year(s): 
2016
3
Stable
Confidence (in grade): 
Adequate
Confidence (in trend): 
Adequate
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Comparable

Understanding: Good understanding of impacts, other than acoustic impacts and behavioural disturbance

Year(s): 
2011
3
Improving
Confidence (in grade): 
Adequate
Confidence (in trend): 
Limited
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not assessed

Planning: There is good level of national and international coordination to manage the direct impacts associated with pollution and grounding of commercial vessels, management systems for mitigating impacts of introduced species are improving and some planning associated with the impacts of vessel strike is being conducted

Year(s): 
2016
3
Improving
Confidence (in grade): 
Adequate
Confidence (in trend): 
Adequate
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Comparable

Planning: Good level of national and international coordination to manage shipping impacts

Year(s): 
2011
3
Improving
Confidence (in grade): 
Adequate
Confidence (in trend): 
Limited
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not assessed

Inputs: Monitoring and reporting systems for maritime safety, pollution and grounding of ships are well developed

Year(s): 
2016
3
Improving
Confidence (in grade): 
Adequate
Confidence (in trend): 
Adequate
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Comparable

Inputs: Strong management systems are in place, although issues remain regarding monitoring and compliance

Year(s): 
2011
3
Improving
Confidence (in grade): 
Adequate
Confidence (in trend): 
Limited

Process: Shipping management systems and implementation of national and international provisions continue to provide effective protection in most areas. There is little direct management of vessel strike and general vessel noise, largely due to a lack of information quantifying impacts and for which management frameworks could be informed by.

Year(s): 
2016
3
Improving
Confidence (in grade): 
Adequate
Confidence (in trend): 
Adequate
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Comparable

Processes: Shipping management systems are well developed and moderately effective. Groundings, shipping lanes and pest species are generally well managed nationally and internationally, but species introductions continue to occur at a high rate

Year(s): 
2011
2
Improving
Confidence (in grade): 
Adequate
Confidence (in trend): 
Limited
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not assessed

Outputs: Management frameworks ensure that environmental non-compliance in association with safety, pollution and grounding is addressed, however, empirical information that could provide insight into the commercial industry’s approach to environmental performance is not available

Year(s): 
2016
3
Improving
Confidence (in grade): 
Limited
Confidence (in trend): 
Limited
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Comparable

Outputs: Further management is needed to ensure that best-practice procedures are maintained

Year(s): 
2011
3
Stable
Confidence (in grade): 
Adequate
Confidence (in trend): 
Limited
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not assessed

Outcomes: Management frameworks currently largely address impacts associated with groundings, pollution, and introduction of marine species, with management of impacts associated with on-going low level noise and vessel strike impeded by a lack of data

Year(s): 
2016
3
Improving
Confidence (in grade): 
Limited
Confidence (in trend): 
Limited
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Comparable

Outcomes: Intensification of shipping remains a significant risk for pests, groundings and marine mammals

Year(s): 
2011
3
Stable
Confidence (in grade): 
Limited
Confidence (in trend): 
Limited
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not assessed

Understanding: Sources of underwater noise across sectors are well known, however knowledge of impacts requires a greater level of understanding.

Year(s): 
2016
3
Improving
Confidence (in grade): 
Very limited
Confidence (in trend): 
Very limited
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not assessed

Planning: Acute impacts across sectors are largely managed through EPBC Act approval processes, regulatory frameworks and internal environmental planning reducing risks, planning associated with chronic impacts is less established

Year(s): 
2016
2
Improving
Confidence (in grade): 
Somewhat adequate
Confidence (in trend): 
Somewhat adequate
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not assessed

Inputs: Substantial information is available to inform management with varying degrees of uptake across sectors.

Year(s): 
2016
2
Stable
Confidence (in grade): 
Somewhat adequate
Confidence (in trend): 
Somewhat adequate
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not assessed

Processes: Environmental authorisation processes associated with or endorsed by the EPBC Act are in place across sectors for acute impacts; there is little management of chronic impacts

Year(s): 
2016
2
Stable
Confidence (in grade): 
Somewhat adequate
Confidence (in trend): 
Somewhat adequate
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not assessed

Outputs: Assessment and inspection of noise producing activities associated with the oil and gas industry and environmental assessments and collaborative research programs conducted by the Navy are used to inform required areas of improvement in these sectors. Outputs and improvement processes across other sectors are less clear.

Year(s): 
2016
3
Improving
Confidence (in grade): 
Somewhat adequate
Confidence (in trend): 
Somewhat adequate
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not assessed

An increased level of regulatory oversight for oil and gas activities and ongoing research and inputs into environmental plans for the Navy aim to ensure effective management of underwater noise in these sectors. Management outcomes for other sectors are less clear.

Year(s): 
2016
3
Improving
Confidence (in grade): 
Somewhat adequate
Confidence (in trend): 
Somewhat adequate
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not assessed

Understanding: Local sources of marine debris are well known with increasing understanding of sources from neighbouring areas; knowledge of impacts is increasing however requires a greater level of understanding.

Year(s): 
2016
2
Improving
Confidence (in grade): 
Somewhat adequate
Confidence (in trend): 
Somewhat adequate
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Somewhat comparable

Understanding: Management systems are poorly informed about the extent and risks of debris, or the relationships to trade globalisation and container shipping systems

Year(s): 
2011
2
Stable
Confidence (in grade): 
Adequate
Confidence (in trend): 
Limited
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not assessed

Planning: international conventions addressing the release of marine debris are in place and there are some efforts to improve waste reception facilities at both local and neighbouring international ports, however there are few practical arrangements in place for comprehensive and coordinated mitigation.

Year(s): 
2016
1
Deteriorating
Confidence (in grade): 
Somewhat adequate
Confidence (in trend): 
Somewhat adequate
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Somewhat comparable

Planning: Much of the issue is global, and global shipping systems (International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution From Ships [MARPOL]) are in place, but there are few practical arrangements in place to combat either gross or microparticle debris

Year(s): 
2011
1
Deteriorating
Confidence (in grade): 
Adequate
Confidence (in trend): 
Limited
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not assessed

Inputs: Waste management programs have been developed but are yet to be implemented into fishery management arrangements and identification of port waste reception facilities is currently voluntary

Year(s): 
2016
1
Deteriorating
Confidence (in grade): 
Somewhat adequate
Confidence (in trend): 
Somewhat adequate
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Somewhat comparable

Inputs: Domestic and global waste management programs have been developed

Year(s): 
2011
1
Deteriorating
Confidence (in grade): 
Limited
Confidence (in trend): 
Limited
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not assessed

Processes: Management frameworks for land based sources operate across multiple jurisdictions that are not coordinated and there is currently no clear management framework at the Australian government level.

Year(s): 
2016
1
Deteriorating
Confidence (in grade): 
Somewhat adequate
Confidence (in trend): 
Somewhat adequate
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Somewhat comparable

Processes: Management of marine debris issues is weak; domestic and foreign-sourced materials management is limited to industry arrangements and codes of conduct on shipping traffic and fishing vessels; limited processes to reduce losses from container vessels or manage waste from accidents

Year(s): 
2011
1
Deteriorating
Confidence (in grade): 
Limited
Confidence (in trend): 
Limited
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not assessed

Outputs: Measures made against the objectives of the Threat Abatement Plan have been identified as being ineffective at addressing threats associated with marine debris.

Year(s): 
2016
1
Deteriorating
Confidence (in grade): 
Somewhat adequate
Confidence (in trend): 
Somewhat adequate
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Somewhat comparable

Outputs: Limited compliance monitoring of vessel-based waste management arrangements

Year(s): 
2011
1
Deteriorating
Confidence (in grade): 
Limited
Confidence (in trend): 
Limited
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not assessed

Outcomes: Marine debris continues to impact species and ecosystems with no decline in pressures on the marine environment

Year(s): 
2016
1
Deteriorating
Confidence (in grade): 
Somewhat adequate
Confidence (in trend): 
Somewhat adequate
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Somewhat comparable

Outcomes: Debris heavily impacts tropical waters; whales, birds and turtles are impacted (entanglement and ingestion) and probably a range of invertebrates. Plastic microparticles are globally widespread and increasing in all ocean waters, with an increasing but unknown level of ecological impact

Year(s): 
2011
1
Deteriorating
Confidence (in grade): 
Limited
Confidence (in trend): 
Limited
Comparability (to previous reports): 
Not assessed
Evans K, Bax NJ, Smith DC (2016). Marine environment: Effectiveness of marine management. In: Australia state of the environment 2016, Australian Government Department of the Environment and Energy, Canberra, https://soe.environment.gov.au/assessment-summary/marine-environment/effectiveness-marine-management, DOI 10.4226/94/58b657ea7c296