Thank you Fran Sheldon and Rivers Institute

16 November 2023


In our last newsletter I mentioned that its time to rethink how we are undertaking environmental monitoring.  The need to align monitoring metrics and management actions to bring the data to life. The opportunity to reduce costs and avoid unnecessary or ineffective monitoring effort. As it turns out I’m not alone (which is always a relief).

The big questions: Are we managing our operations or environment well? Are our strategies working? What to measure, in how many locations, at what frequency to assess the impact of a management strategy is incredibly important to determine.  The target should be the minimum quantity of measurement to answer the big questions.

Unfortunately, we tend to adopt the default position of:  not doing this analysis, but continuing to ask for more measurements. This leads to a lot of costs and often unnecessary data.  Why are we in this situation? Because the analysis is technically challenging and moves us outside of the comfortable paradigm of following the guidelines. 

This monitoring plan analysis is ideal for our engineering consultants and researchers to perform. It requires conceptual models, numerical modelling, statistical analysis. Empowered with this analysis and high quality monitoring we will know where we are going and how we are performing. This is the purpose of monitoring.

How to do the analysis I hear you say? We had an excellent webinar topic from our popular presenter Prof Fran Sheldon, Head of School, School of Environment and Science, Griffith University.  Please head over to our website to view the webinar titled Trees make things better: the importance of catchment vegetation for stream health.”

In Addition, Fran has shared a few key publications with us, you may find them interesting.

Site reduction in redundant ecosystem sampling schemes

Identifying the spatial scale of land use that most strongly influences overall river ecosystem health score