Welcome to Issue 10 of the Australian Government’s National Environmental Science Programme Tropical Water Quality Hub newsletter. In this issue we discuss projects that exemplify our Hub’s work – reducing nutrients and sediments running off catchments, working with farmers to increase adoption of better practices, and demonstrating the benefits to the reef environment. Our impact across all of these areas has never been more relevant or crucial, as UNESCO meets to consider the Great Barrier Reef’s future World Heritage status. We were privileged to meet with Australia’s next Ambassador to UNESCO during his recent visit to Cairns, briefing him on many of the NESP TWQ Hub’s projects and impacts.
In this newsletter we highlight Mike Bell’s project trialling the use of more efficient fertilisers that minimise nitrogen losses in the cane industry, and Rebecca Bartley’s research of better ways to rehabilitate eroding gullies in grazing lands, two of our key research investments that meet the goal of improving the quality of water running to the reef environment. Lynne Eagle and her team are examining how to increase uptake and adoption of recommended land management practices in order to realise the benefits of the research being conducted. Katharina Fabricius is developing a new tool to enable assessment of light penetration through the water column (a key water quality indicator and ecological driver) to demonstrate improvements that are being made as a result of investments in improved reef health.
The Tropical Water Quality Hub would like to wish you a happy, healthy and safe festive season. We look forward to continuing to work with you all in 2017.