eAtlas 2015 – NESP data management, Torres Strait NRM plan delivery platform and Torres Strait reef mapping

Eric Lawrey 100dpi
Led by: Dr Eric Lawrey, AIMS


Project Summary

Activities of the eAtlas in 2015 (July-December) include:

  • The eAtlas has approximately 50 datasets that were recently submitted for review that are awaiting preparation, publication and visualization. This project will complete the publication process for these datasets making them available via the eAtlas and with spatial datasets also being made available via the AODN. (55%).
  • Work with 1st round NESP TWQ projects to capture any new relevant data products for inclusion in the eAtlas and provide training sessions on providing data in the right format. (13%).
  • Support and continue training in the use of the Torres Strait eAtlas with Torres Strait Regional Authority (TSRA) so it can be used as a publishing platform for their new Land and Sea Strategy NRM plans. (14%).
  • Work with TSRA to complete the Torres Strait reef mapping, started under the NERP TE, so that it can be used by GBRMPA to process the Torres Strait coral monitoring data (RHIS) (18%).

Note: Figures in brackets indicate percentage of total project cost.

Problem Statements


This project proposal describes and covers eAtlas activities from July 2015 through to December 2015.
The core value of the eAtlas is the publication of the datasets that are submitted to it. The bulk of the work in this project will be focused on expanding on this content and publishing all recently submitted relevant datasets of sufficient quality (approximately 50 datasets). The publication of each dataset takes approximately 1 – 4 days to review, clean, document, visualize and file into each of the eAtlas systems. The eAtlas received a large in-flux of submissions at the end of 2014 (approximately 95 datasets) resulting in a backlog that has carried over into 2015. This backlog of content when published will contribute over 500 new map layers providing a significant public legacy of recent research in the Wet Tropics, the Great Barrier Reef and Torres Strait.

The eAtlas team will work with new NESP TWQ projects to capture any new relevant datasets into the eAtlas. This will include providing training sessions to projects to ensure data is properly managed and provided in the correct format. It is expected that only a small number of first round of NESP projects will generate new datasets.

Under the NERP TE a coral reef monitoring program was initiated in Torres Strait that TSRA rangers could maintain in the future. This monitoring program uses Reef Health Impact Surveys (RHIS) and the Eye on the Reef (EotR) database system developed by GBRMPA. Unfortunately the EotR requires spatial mapping of the Torres Strait reefs, with permanent reef IDs, to accept and process the RHIS data. No suitable map data exists for Torres Strait. In the last year of the NERP TE the eAtlas team undertook a small project to start mapping the Torres Strait reefs and islands for this purpose and to develop the basemap for the Torres Strait eAtlas. This mapping was completed to a draft level, minus the allocation of reef IDs. This part of the project will complete this reef mapping to create a spatial layer suitable for integrating RHIS data into the Eye on the Reef database.
The eAtlas team will provide assistance and further training of TSRA staff to use the Torres Strait eAtlas to publish their new Land and Sea Strategy NRM plan.

How Research Addresses Problem

The eAtlas provides an easy to access platform for all manner of end-users and the general public (including school children).

Project Keywords

Data management; Torres Strait; Coral reefs; Mapping; E-atlas.

Project Funding

This project is jointly funded through AIMS, TSRA and the Australian Government’s National Environmental Science Programme.

Project Publications
NESP TWQ Project 3.13 Final Report 1
Final Report
NESP TWQ Project 3.13 Final Report 2
Final Report