Conservation Management Priorities

The conservation value assessment highlights and describes key components of an ecosystem that make it important, irrespective of how those values are currently managed or conserved.  The next step was to rank the freshwater ecosystems that reflect their priority for conservation management. 

The conservation management priorities were established using the information on the site's conservation value, coupled with a prediction of how well the water (using Naturalness) and surrounding land (Land Tenure Security) were managed to protect important values.

The Land Tenure Security (LTS) for the ecosystem was identified as being High, Medium or Low.  An ecosystem with High LTS was predominantly surrounded by land where formal, regulated restrictions were in place to reduce or eliminate potential negative impacts (e.g. within a reserve), while an ecosystem with Low LTS had no formal or mandatory restrictions in place (e.g. on private land).

A different set of priorities were generated depending on whether the protection of current reserves is considered or not.

Two Conservation Management Priority rankings were produced: Immediate priorities (CMPI) – ecosystems to target for conservation action now, and Potential (or future) priorities (CMPP) – ecosystems to protect against future negative impacts.  For each ranking, two outputs are available: 1 uses the Representative Conservation Value as input to the rules (i.e. no influence from Special Values) and 2 uses the Integrated Conservation Value as input to the rules (i.e. accounts for the presence of Special Values).  Note, when accessing the CFEV data via the Water Information of Tasmania (WIST), only CMPI2 and CMPP2 values are available.

CMPI was developed to allow natural resource managers to prioritise freshwater dependent ecosystems using all of the inputs previously described, and then weight these priorities using the assumption that if values occur in areas of High (LTS), that they are 'safe' and therefore no longer a high priority for management. CMPI is effectively a mappable variable that suggests good areas to be added to reserves as they have important conservation values, but are currently unreserved. In WIST, CMPI2 is the variable used in the "Are you exploring natural freshwater values?" workflow.

CMPP uses the same inputs as CMPI, but it assumes that if you are proposing a development, then there is the potential for impacts upon the surrounding freshwater-dependent ecosystems and so the priorities for management are calculated without the same assumptions about current reserves and protection. This variable was developed to allow a localised appraisal of conservation management priorities in the light of a new development. In WIST, CMPP is the variable used in the "Are you proposing a new development?" workflow.

More details can be found in the CFEV technical report available from the CFEV resources page.