Parks Australia is in the process of finalising a Monitoring, Evaluation, Reporting and Improvement (MERI) System to support adaptive management of Australian Marine Parks (AMPs). The Marine Biodiversity Hub is playing an important role in the development and implementation of this system, building on previous experience in identifying key values and pressures relevant to AMPs, and developing integrated monitoring and reporting programs. This work has included developing the integrated monitoring framework for the Great Barrier Reef, developing a process for identifying indicators for monitoring Key Ecological Features, and collecting much of the ecological data that exists for AMPs.

The following tasks are being undertaken in collaboration with Parks Australia.

  • Review the ‘common language’ proposed for AMPs, including natural values and pressures classifications, hierarchies and definitions.
  • Identifying natural values, pressures and human uses and coordinating the provision of spatial data layers from existing and previous projects for incorporation into Parks Australia’s spatial information systems and other mapping portals.
  • Review conceptual models developed for each of the key ecosystems across the Australian Marine Park networks.
  • Review ecological risk assessments for natural values and pressures.
  • Provide advice on the process and criteria for identifying monitoring and inventory priorities.
  • Develop detailed conceptual models for areas identified as monitoring priorities for selected AMP networks.
  • Contribute to the development of monitoring questions.
  • Provide advice on the process and selection criteria for identifying appropriate value and pressure indicators.
  • Provide advice on best practice approaches for assessing management effectiveness.
  • Identify the suitability of existing data sets to support the identified monitoring priorities.
  • Provide advice on evaluation and reporting including best approaches for using a combination of quantitative data and expert opinion, and to help ensure alignment and consistency across objectives, key evaluation questions and reporting.
  • Provide marine park pressure profiles for each AMP network describing the state of pressure in each network and the trends (where possible).