2015-16

Theme 1 : Models of ecological response

1.6 – Spatial prioritization of waterway management for biodiversity outcomes
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Project Description (PDF)

Description: develop and implement spatial planning tools that will allow different planning options and their associated outcomes to be evaluated. These tools will inform prioritization of restoration works and protection and scales of investment for next water plan. Outcomes for Melbourne Water: tools to help decide where investment in stream protection will provide greatest benefit.
Contact: Chris Walsh
Timing: 4 years (this project is continuing on from 2014-15)

Theme 2 : Flow and water quality management

2.5 – Setting hydrologic objectives from site-scale to catchment-scale
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Project Description (PDF)

Description: this project will aim to develop objectives for hydrology from the scale of individual sites (e.g. an allotment or a stormwater control measure) through to the whole-of-catchment scale. Outcomes for Melbourne Water: tools and frameworks to assist policy development and implementation around managing flow regimes in Melbourne’s waterways
Contact: Tim Fletcher
Timing: 3 years (this project is continuing on from 2014-15)

2.6 – Developing tree-based infiltration systems
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Project Description (PDF)

Description: this project focuses on optimising tree-based stormwater control measures which have not been quantified, despite their substantial capacity for use throughout urban areas; as well as their ability to intercept significant quantities of both water and nutrient pollutants. Outcomes for Melbourne Water: a guidance document on how to design tree-based systems, and development of a tree-based node for the MUSIC model which will allow users to model the performance of tree-based systems alongside other stormwater control measures.
Contact: Chris Szota
Timing: 2 years

Theme 3 : Catchment scale interventions

3.4 – Catchment-scale retrofit: experimental assessment of the ability of new multi-scale urban stormwater management approaches to protect the hydrology, water quality and ecology of receiving water ecosystems
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Project Description (PDF)

Description: this project tests the effectiveness of dispersed, catchment-scale stormwater retention, treatment and harvesting. It also seeks to understand the factors influencing the maintenance of dispersed stormwater control measures on both public and private land. Social and economic implications will be assessed through collaborations. Outcomes for Melbourne Water: determine the optimal scale and arrangement of stormwater treatment and retention systems to achieve stream protection.
Contact: Tim Fletcher & Chris Walsh
Timing: 3 years (this project is continuing on from 2014-15)

Theme 4 : Assessment of stream management activities

4.2 – Monitoring and evaluation program to accompany Yellingbo capital works project
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Project Description (PDF)

Description: this project is a targeted monitoring and evaluation program to accompany the proposed capital works project at Yellingbo aimed at naturalising water regimes within the Cockatoo Swamp, and thus arresting dieback and leading to improved condition of its swamp forests, which are critical habitat for the Helmeted Honeyeater and lowland Leadbeater’s Possum. Outcomes for Melbourne Water: assessment of the efficacy of the works in naturalising water regimes within Cockatoo Swamp and any resulting changes in vegetation condition.
Contact: Joe Greet
Timing: 3 years (this project is continuing on from 2014-15)

4.4 – Prioritisation and effectiveness of rural land runoff control interventions
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Project Description (PDF)

Project Update (Beenak) (PDF)

Community Note (Tarago) (PDF)

Description: This project will assess the performance of interventions undertaken within the Rural Land Program to protect rural waterways from pollution, erosion and degradation. It will also develop a pollutant source-tracking approach to identify and quantify pollutant sources and prioritise pollutant mitigation. Outcomes for Melbourne Water: a new modelling framework to compare and assess proposed rural land structural controls and management practices. Practical guidelines for managing drainage lines in rural and urban landscapes.
Contact: Tim Fletcher
Timing: 3 years (this project is continuing on from 2014-15)

4.6 – Evaluating direct seeding as a cost-effective technique for riparian revegetation
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Project Description (PDF)

Description: if barriers to seedling establishment can be overcome, direct seeding has the potential to be more cost-effective and therefore, make it possible to achieve revegetation over larger areas than traditional revegetation approaches. A recently completed literature review identified two key areas for further on-ground assessment: the extent of site preparation required prior to sowing (particularly weed control) and effective methods for post-sowing weed control. Outcomes for Melbourne Water: development of waterway revegetation approaches that have the potential to be more cost-effective.
Contact: Fiona Ede
Timing: 4 years(this project is continuing on from 2014-15)

4.7 – Assessment of Phragmites expansion and control measures at the Seaford Wetlands
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Project Description (PDF)

Description: The Seaford Wetlands vegetation monitoring program was established in 2013 to accompany capital works aimed at naturalising water regimes and assisting in the control of Phragmites australis (Common Reed). The program is monitoring potential expansion of Phragmites and assessing the effectiveness of slashing as a control measure. Outcomes for Melbourne Water: a resurvey of the monitoring sites and a report on assessments of vegetation response based on the three years of post-works data collection
Contact: Joe Greet
Timing: 3 years

Theme 5 : Community engagement

5.1 – Effectiveness of alternative community engagement strategies
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Project Description (PDF)

Description: This project will increase understanding on how Melbourne Water’s waterway management teams can best engage the community, including whether different approaches may be needed in different parts of our region. It will identify patterns of socio-institutional variability at practical scales and link these patterns through testing to establish a toolbox of effective engagement methods. Outcomes for Melbourne Water: an engagement toolbox designed as an easy-to-access facility that Waterways officers can put to use when planning and implementing projects.
Contact: Peter Morrison
Timing: 3 years (this project is continuing on from 2014-15)

5.2 – Making incentives matter
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Project Description (PDF)

Description: Improved understanding of the role of incentives for achieving ecosystem improvements including, willinginess of people to pay for and in catchment-scale integrated water management (IWM) schemes, identifying who is involved and who benefits from improvements, and approaches that can stimulate increased participation. Total Economic Value assessments will also be applied to identify the value of the waterway health benefits delivered by such projects. Outcomes for Melbourne Water: Comprehensive datasets of community costs for a range of IWM options that demonstrates the value of distributed water management with a focus on ecosystem health benefits. A Total Economic Framework model that provides clearer understandings of value associated with different IWM projects to guide and design of IWM.
Contact: Peter Morrison
Timing: 3 years

5.3 – Community values for Melbourne Water’s biodiversity assets
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Project Description (PDF)

Description: This project will explore the different ways that people think about Melbourne’s waterways and how people’s values shape their beliefs about natural areas, normative beliefs about the condition of native vegetation around waterways, sense of place and the social acceptability of management around waterways in Melbourne. Outcomes for Melbourne Water: Development and implementation of tools that can be used to inform waterway strategy, planning and management to minimise conflict between stakeholders and promote the social acceptability of management activities.
Contact: Dave Kendal
Timing: 2 years

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