Year

2012

Degree Name

Bachelor of Environmental Science (Honours)

ANZSRC / FoR Code

049999 Earth Sciences not elsewhere classified

Department

School of Earth & Environmental Science

Advisor(s)

Solomon Buckman

Abstract

The South Coast Region National Parks and Wildlife Service encompasses a range of geodiversity features. This research project was developed in conjunction with staff from the Office of Environment and Heritage (OEH) and addresses whether conservation of geodiversity is adequately covered within the South Coast Region NPWS Plans of Management (PoM) and existing reserve system.

Results gained through a systematic review of 27 reserves PoM revealed that geodiversity is not mentioned, and what is discussed in relation to geodiversity is inadequate when compared to the level of attention paid to biodiversity. In depth acknowledgement of geodiversity and its conservation within Plans of Management is required in order to improve the conservation of geodiversity within the existing reserve system. The existing reserve system only covers 33% of all documented geosites within the region, with 67% lying outside of reserve boundaries. It is essential for NPWS to assess and plan for the management of sites across the wider landscape, and not just within the reserve system. A major finding is the need to undertake a geological survey of the entire region and include all geosites of significance within one location, such as a corporate NPWS geodiversity database. A Geodiversity Site Assessment Technique (GSAT) was created to objectively and systematically assess the inherent value of individual geosites in terms of scientific, economic and cultural importance. The development of a comprehensive site assessment technique such as the GSAT provides important information on geosites and could guide future management strategies that will adequately conserve geodiversity within the South Coast Region.

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