Managing the environment requires decisions to be made in how to best manage ecosystems. There are a range of threats to manage, often over large areas, which can be costly and it can be hard to priortise what actions to do and where to maximise the investment. We have experience in developing feasibility assessments to help resource managers and investors assess the risk-return ratios for proposed projects, and thereby help advise on actions to achieve the best return on investment.
– Collating information from local, real world scenarios of management costs
– Market and non-market valuation of benefits from ecosystems and biodiversity
We conducted an investment-benefit analysis of different options to restore kelp and subtidal reef ecosystems in Port Phillip Bay. The primary threat to these ecosystems, is overgrazing by sea urchins, so we assessed 5 different options to undertake sea urchin culling (Organisation led, Volunteer-led, or Commercial divers, and combinations of the three). We included the costs associated with culling by the different groups, and collated information on the benefits of kelp and subtidal reef ecosystems (eg. Fisheries, carbon & nitrogen sequestration, recreational fishing). We found that all options resulted in net benefit of reef restoration (benefits were higher than costs). We also found that sea urchin culling by commercial divers led to the most cost-effective outcome and could be completed across the 400 ha of barren reef within the bay over a 5 year period.
This project was delivered in partnership with The University of Melbourne and funded by the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning.