OzCoasts Website

Geoscience Australia hosts the OzCoasts website External site link which is an important source of coastal information and data in Australia. The website was previously called OzEstuaries, and has links to strategic priority areas in the Implementation Plan for a National Cooperative Approach to Integrated Coastal Zone Management External site link. This includes:

  • capacity building
  • climate change
  • monitoring and evaluation.

Approximately 12,000 unique visitors from more than 160 countries visit the site each month to view around 45,000 pages. Maps, images, reports and data can be downloaded to assist with estuary and coastal science, monitoring and management. The modules are accessed via the global navigation bar at the top of the screen. The site consists of six inter-linked modules:

  • search data
  • conceptual models
  • coastal indicators
  • geomorphology and geology
  • environmental management
  • natural resource management reporting.

Conceptual models are concise illustrations that depict the important features, processes and management challenges in a particular coastal environment. Three-dimensional block diagrams are available for each of the seven different types of coastal waterways found in Australia. These models have overlays that depict sediment dynamics, hydrodynamics and nitrogen dynamics. There are also conceptual models of coastal stressors, and a facility to build your own conceptual model. Restructure of conceptual models pages has been undertaken to better integrate and link existing models under the broad headings of 'science synthesis' and 'stressor models'.

Coastal indicators are physical, chemical, biological or socio-economic measures that best represent key elements of a complex ecosystem or environmental issue. The coastal indicator module consists of a series of fact sheets that describe indicators in terms of:

  • what they are
  • what causes them to change
  • their significance
  • considerations for their measurement and interpretation
  • existing information and data.

The new Natural Resource Management (NRM) Reporting module provides access to key information and data that supports NRM Reporting. The module has data exploration tools for viewing information that relates to Habitat Extent and Distribution. There are national, state and regional summaries that comprise vector polygon layers of 10 and 50 km grid cells with a colour coding that indicates whether a habitat is present, absent or unknown within a given grid cell. Users can also zoom to see the actual habitat maps. Users can also view report scores and trends at a range of different spatial scales including national, states, regional (Catchment Management Authorities (CMAs), Natural Resource Management (NRM) zones and Local Government Areas (LGAs)) and bioregional (Integrated Marine and Coastal Regionalisation of Australia (IMCRA) and Marine Planning regions), and get a statistical breakdown of the scores for the area selected and Monitoring and Report Card reporting.

Topic contact: marine@ga.gov.au Last updated: June 17, 2013