Coastal activities examined in new study

Feb 12, 2013
Coastal activities examined in new study

Researchers have embarked on the first comprehensive study of human activity along the west Kimberley coast.

Over the next two years, researchers from Murdoch University and the University of WA working together on the WAMSI Kimberley Marine Research Program, will build a picture of how people currently use the of the Kimberley and learn more about how that may change in the future.

Researchers will map along 80-Mile Beach, Roebuck Bay, the Dampier Peninsula, Buccaneer Archipelago and Camden Sound using low level aerial surveys.

Professor Lynnath Beckley from Murdoch University said the study would provide essential benchmark data to help with planning future development in the region.

"We will create maps of which sections of the coast are used, what these people are doing, and ascertain how many people are engaged in coastal activities," she said.

"These surveys will be done over weekends, weekdays and during the wet and to get a sense of how human activity changes throughout the year.

"We are interested in all people in these areas – whether they are tourists, Indigenous residents, or people working in different industries."

The study will also examine the values people hold for this region and how they would like to see it managed in the future.

"We will be interviewing around 150 people including tourists, Indigenous and other residents, as well as industry and , to better understand what they value about the west Kimberley coast and their aspirations for the future" said Associate Professor Sue Moore from Murdoch University.

This information will then be integrated with biological and physical data to assist decision-making in this rapidly changing region.

Professor Beckley said the study would provide tools to plan for , especially how to better include information on where people go, what they do and what they value.

"This sort of information is essential for planning conservation and future development in a way that acknowledges the unique ecology of the Kimberley and the strong values held for it by society," said Professor Beckley.

Explore further: China says massive area of its soil polluted

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Extinction threat for 45 Australian species

Mar 23, 2011

Up to 45 rare species of wallaby, bandicoot and other Australian animals could become extinct within 20 years unless urgent action is taken to control introduced predators and other threats, scientists warned ...

Aussie northern savanna 'largest, most intact on Earth

Aug 14, 2007

A new book on Northern Australia by four of the country’s leading scientists reveals the region has the largest and least damaged tropical savanna in the world, and calls for a new approach to development and conservation ...

Recommended for you

More, bigger wildfires burning western US, study shows

3 hours ago

Wildfires across the western United States have been getting bigger and more frequent over the last 30 years – a trend that could continue as climate change causes temperatures to rise and drought to become ...

User comments : 0

More news stories

There's something ancient in the icebox

Glaciers are commonly thought to work like a belt sander. As they move over the land they scrape off everything—vegetation, soil, and even the top layer of bedrock. So scientists were greatly surprised ...

Clean air: Fewer sources for self-cleaning

Up to now, HONO, also known as nitrous acid, was considered one of the most important sources of hydroxyl radicals (OH), which are regarded as the detergent of the atmosphere, allowing the air to clean itself. ...

Hackathon team's GoogolPlex gives Siri extra powers

(Phys.org) —Four freshmen at the University of Pennsylvania have taken Apple's personal assistant Siri to behave as a graduate-level executive assistant which, when asked, is capable of adjusting the temperature ...

Better thermal-imaging lens from waste sulfur

Sulfur left over from refining fossil fuels can be transformed into cheap, lightweight, plastic lenses for infrared devices, including night-vision goggles, a University of Arizona-led international team ...