Report uses pre-dredging data
THE latest report on the environmental health of Gladstone Harbour is based on data 12 months old and gives no indication of what effects the summer floods or dredging activity may have had on the local marine ecosystem.
But the report also gives little to no indication of any negative changes to the local ecosystem since the last report in 2007.
The $750,000 Port Curtis Ecosystem Health Report Card monitors water quality, seagrass and sediment quality in the Gladstone Harbour area.
It was released yesterday by its 17 industrial sponsors, after several months of internal negotiations during a protracted "members' feedback" process.
One of the "major sponsors and participants" of the PCIMP, Gladstone Ports Corporation, could not reveal why the report had not been released before.
A GPC spokeswoman released a statement which said: "The funding was conditional on PCIMP and Central Queensland University releasing in a timely fashion all information on the results of their monitoring programs to the public.
"GPC has never instructed PCIMP or CQU to withhold the results of the monitoring programme."
The report card said that of eight different zones in the harbour, all scored at least a "B+", under a scoring system measured against Australian water-quality standards.
Data was collected by scientists working for Vision Environment, a Gladstone company which completes the program, over a three-year period - July, 2008, to November, 2010.
All data was collected before the 2010-11 summer floods and recent dredging operations.
The aim of the program was to produce baseline environmental data to inform local industry about what other technical studies should be undertaken.