Evaluation of the Australian Regional Environmental Accounts Trial
NRM Regions Australia, the Wentworth Group of Concerned Scientists and associated scientists, and experts in Commonwealth and state agencies undertook a four-year trial to develop a set of regionally-based environmental accounts which measure the condition of environmental assets. The purpose of the trial was to test the operational aspects and institutional arrangements necessary for carrying out an ongoing national environmental accounts program, based on the Wentworth Group’s Accounting for Nature model (2008).
The Evaluation of the Australian Regional Environmental Accounts Trial is the first of two reports providing an evaluation of the Australian Regional Environmental Account Trial. The Evaluation Report report describes key processes and operational aspects of the regional environmental accounting trial for the implementation of a national program of environmental accounts in Australia. It specifically focuses on processes developed through the trial, application of the Accounting for Nature model to regional environmental accounting, testing processes regarding aggregation of measures of environmental condition, and overall assessment of the model for multi-level environmental accounting.
Scientific Standards and Accreditation Committee
Mr Peter Cosier, (Chair) Director, Wentworth Group of Concerned Scientists
Dr Richard Davis, Hydrologist, former Chief Science Advisor, Australian National Water Commission
Mr Mike Grundy, Research Director, Sustaining Soil and Landscapes, CSIRO Agriculture Flagship
Dr Ronnie Harding FEIANZ, Zoologist, Senior Visiting Fellow, Institute of Environmental Studies, UNSW
Dr Terry Hillman AM, Ecologist, former Member, Murray Darling Basin, Sustainable Rivers Audit
Dr Richard Mount, Geographer, Adjunct Senior Researcher, University of Tasmania, former Environmental Accounts Lead, Bureau of Meteorology
Prof. Hugh Possingham FAA, Professor of Mathematics and Zoology, Centre for Australian Environmental Decision Analysis, UQ
Dr Denis Saunders AM, Chair, Sara Halvedene Foundation, Ecologist, Editor, Pacific Conservation Biology; former Chief Research Scientist, CSIRO
Ms Carla Sbrocchi, Marine Biologist, Environmental Accounts Program Manager, Wentworth Group of Concerned Scientists
Dr Tony Smith AM, Chief Research Scientist, CSIRO Oceans and Atmosphere
Adj. Assoc. Prof. Richard Thackway, Ecologist, School of Geography, Planning & Environmental Management, UQ
Prof. Bruce Thom AM, FIAG, FTSE: Geographer, Chair, 2001 Australian State of the Environment Report
Sbrocchi C., Davis R., Grundy M., Harding R., Hillman T., Mount R., Possingham H., Saunders D., Smith T., Thackway R., Thom B., and Cosier, P. (2015) Evaluation of the Australian Regional Environmental Accounts Trial. Wentworth Group of Concerned Scientists, Sydney. ISBN 978-0-9944577-0-7.
We would like to thank many people for their invaluable contributions, expert advice and assistance in preparing methods and approaches for the environmental accounts. We also acknowledge the 10 NRM regions that contributed to the trial: Central West Catchment Management Authority, Corangamite Catchment Management Authority, Namoi Catchment Management Authority, Natural Resources Eyre Peninsula, North Central Catchment Management Authority, Northern Agricultural Catchments Council, Northern Gulf Resource Management Group, NRM North, Queensland Murray-Darling Committee, South East Queensland Catchments. A full list of contributors is provided in Supplementary Material 6 of the Technical Report. We also thank Carley Bartlett, Dr Ian Ball, Dr George Argyrous and Dr Celine Steinfeld for assistance with manuscript preparation. We are grateful to Dr Neil Byron, Brad Page and Carl Obst for comments on previous drafts. We also gratefully acknowledge the funding support from the Purves Environmental Fund and The Ian Potter Foundation, without which this work would not be possible.