Reef regulations | Landholders Driving Change

At the Office of Great Barrier Reef (OGBR) meeting to discuss reef regulations applicable to the grazing industry are (from left): Exevale Station grazier Darcy O’Loughlin, Director Scott Robinson, and Rae Schecht OGBR, Landholders Driving Change (LDC) project panel member Buster O’Loughlin and LDC’s Lisa Hutchinson

Have a say on reef regulations

THE aim of the LDC’s Policy Engagement Activity Area is to facilitate better landholder engagement in relevant policy development and implementation in the Bowen, Broken and Bogie (BBB) catchments.  One of those policies is the reef regulations.

Last year, following consultation with graziers in the BBB, the LDC submitted a response to the draft regulations on behalf of the grazier representatives on the project panel.

One concern expressed by graziers in the BBB, and those who sit on the LDC project panel, was that the proposed 12-month implementation time frame of the reef regulations was unreasonable.

As a result, the standards will be staged across reef regions during three years, according to water quality management priorities.  OGBR representatives visited Bowen last year to inform the grazing community of this amendment.

Last month representatives from the Queensland Government’s Office of the Great Barrier Reef and Department of Environment and Science and local graziers met in Bowen to discuss the revised grazing minimum standards that will apply to commercially productive beef cattle grazing properties in the Great Barrier Reef catchment:  It was a productive discussion with graziers providing feedback on the content.

For further information on the reef regulations: http://bit.ly/2TnkiDm

Beef Central published this article about the reef regulations on its website on 20 March 2019.  It features comments from AgForce CEO Michael Guerin, Queensland Food Future president and grazier Josie Angus and Minister for Environment and the Great Barrier Reef Leeanne Enoch. http://bit.ly/2HKyjsC

Photos by Gill Jurgens, The Third House, Bowen

Tabletop Station grazier and Landholders Driving Change project panel member Tom Murphy (left) with Department of Environment and Science representative Dominic Henderson

Landholders Driving Change MERI Officer Barb Colls and Office of the Great Barrier Reef Director Scott Robinson share a joke

Tabletop Station grazier and Landholders Driving Change project panel member Tom Murphy chats to LDC Senior Grazing Support Officer Brendan Smith

Graziers, officials from the Department of Environment and Science, Landholders Driving Change team members at a meeting convened at the Grandview Hotel, Bowen, by the Office of the Great Barrier Reef to discuss the minimum standards for the grazing industry in the Great Barrier Reef catchment

Pictured at the Office of Great Barrier Reef meeting to disucss reef regulations are (from left): Department of Environment and Science representative Dominic Henderson, Glencoe Station grazier and Landholders Driving Change (LDC) project panel member Bob Harris, LDC’s Lisa Hutchinson and Tabletop Station grazier Tom Murphy

Pictured at the office of Great Barrier Reef meeting to discuss reef regulations are (from left): Rhys Watson Department of Environment and Science, Mt Pleasant Station grazier and Landholders Driving Change (LDC) project panel member Garlone Moulin, LDC MERI Officer Barb Colls, Glenalpine Station grazier Leanne O’Sullivan and Glenlea Downs grazier Peter Anderson

Small talk at the Grandview Hotel in Bowen during the Office of Great Barrier Reef’s meeting to discuss reef regulations applicable to the grazing industry

Landholders Driving Change project Land Management Coordinator Rodger Walker concentrates during the Office of Great Barrier Reef meeting to discuss reef regulations

Graziers Leanne O’Sullivan (Glenalpine) and Peter Anderson (Glenlea Downs)

Mt Pleasant grazier and project panel member Garlone Moulin makes a point

COLLECTIVE THINKING… Working with sheets of butcher’s paper are (from left): Glenlea Downs grazier Peter Anderson, Mt Pleasant Station grazier and Landholders Driving Change project panel member Garlone Mouline, Glenalpine Station grazier Leanne O’Sullivan and Department of Environment and Science representative Leigh Smith

Published by four titlesCirculation - 8,780

Published by two titlesCirculation - 9,965

 

 

 

KEQ #1

Figure 1. Total fine sediment reduction by project type and erosion source. Inset shows the proportion of the total project area for each project type.

These estimates have been calculated using two methods: 

1) The pollutant reduction component of the Alluvium/Great Barrier Reef Foundation (GBRF) investment tool for hillslope and streambank erosion management projects; 

2) The Reef Trust Gully Toolbox method for gully erosion management projects. The LDC Water Quality Report 2020 (Waterhouse et al., 2020) highlights that a number of assumptions underlay these calculations, therefore these figures should be treated as the best available estimate of sediment reductions to date.

Preventing sediment from reaching the Great Barrier Reef

Each wet season sediment is washed into local waterways and out to the Great Barrier Reef (GBR). 

Most sediment is very fine, and can stay suspended for a long time and can travel great distances. Valuable topsoil is lost from production, and increased concentrations on the reef can be harmful to seagrasses and corals. 

Landholders in the BBB have completed 69 on-ground water quality practice changes, and it is estimated that these have contributed a fine sediment reduction of 6,154 tonnes per year from reaching the GBR. 

Of this, approximately half of the sediment savings are attributable to grazing land management changes on hillslopes and streambanks, and the other half as a result of gully remediation treatments across a broad range of scales, as shown in the graphs above. 

The table below also highlights the relatively small area of intervention in the gully management projects compared to the large sediment savings that these can achieve - 60 per cent of the sediment savings over only 4 per cent of the project area.

Table 1. Estimated sediment reductions (tonnes) from projects completed in the LDC Project to date.

KEQ #2

*GLMWW = Grazing Land Management Wire and Water

KEQ #3

*The Exploring New Incentives activity area has provided an opportunity for graziers to adopt improved land management practices through a range of activities. For some of these properties, it was the first time they signed contracts for on-ground works.

KEQ #4

The LDC project monitors four gully sites (represented in this table) with gold standard equipment and analysis, carried out by CSIRO.

Results have been compiled in a preliminary report from Bartley et al (2020), with the final report expected to be released by the end of 2020. The preliminary report shows all four sites have indicators of improvements, notably the Strathbogie and Mt Wickham sites.

KEQ #5

KEQ #6

KEQ #7
KEQ #8

Published in The Northern MinerCirculation - 2,041

Published by four titlesCirculation - 8, 780

 

Published by four titlesCirculation - 8,780

 

 

 

 

Published by four titlesCirculation - 8,780

 

Reef regulations - grazing, standard conditions

  1. For land in good or fair condition (more than 50 per cent ground cover at 30 September), continue using measures to maintain land condition.
  2. For land in poor condition (less than 50 per cent ground cover at 30 September), steps must be taken to improve land condition.
  3. For land in degraded condition (less than 20 per cent ground cover at 30 September), steps must be taken to improve land condition OR prevent areas from further degrading or expanding.
  4. Keep records of measures taken and also of agricultural chemicals, fertiliser and mill mud or mill ash applied to land.
Published by two titlesCirculation - 4,006

Published by one titleCirculation - 7,207