Macquarie Harbour Monitoring Program

​​​​​The EPA has conducted water quality monitoring in Macquarie Harbour since 1993. The monitoring program aims to increase the understanding of water quality within Macquarie Harbour and the Gordon and King Rivers. Monitoring was formalised under the Mount Lyell Remediation Research and Demonstration Project (ML​​RRDP) that was established in 1995 and later expanded to include the World Heritage Monitoring (WHA) Project. Monitoring under these programs was undertaken on a seasonal basis until February 2023.

As of September 2023 a single monitoring program was instigated for the entire Harbour.

Water Quality Monitoring Program 

The purpose of the program is to provide water quality information

  • to increase the understanding of water quality in Macquarie Harbour.

  • to increase the understanding of the Gordon and King Rivers and oceanic exchanges to the overall water quality of Macquarie Harbour.

  • to build upon the understanding of water quality in Macquarie Harbour gained under the Mt Lyell Remediation Research and Demonstration Project (MLRRDP).

  • to increase the understanding of water quality within the World Heritage Area (WHA) area of Macquarie Harbour and the influence of riverine flows from the Gordon River on the WHA.

  • for comparison with interim Default Guideline Values (DGVs) for aquatic ecosystems of Macquarie Harbour.

  • for Dissolved Oxygen at key locations across the harbour through deployment of in situ loggers.

  • to assist nutrient dispersion modelling and biogeochemical model development and validation.

Interim Default Guideline Values (DGVs) for aquatic ecosystems

Interim Default Guideline Values (DGVs) for aquatic ecosystems have been derived for Macquarie Harbour. The available data from May 1993 to October 2009 has allowed for the derivation of annual and seasonal interim DGVs of surface, halocline (interface between surface layer and marine water dominated bottom layer) and bottom waters for key indicators. Annual interim DGVs have also been derived based on depth ranges for field based indicators and on a seasonal basis for dissolved oxygen. For dissolved oxygen, temperature, and pH the 20th percentile represents the lower interim DGV and the 80th percentile the upper interim DGV, whilst for all other indicators the 80th percentile represents the interim DGV. The interim DGVs are for three segments within Macquarie Harbour and provide a level of refinement over the Default guidelin​e values for estuarine waters.

Monitoring Results​

Macquarie Harbour Dissolve​​d Oxygen Report February 2023 (PDF 1Mb)

Reports and Web Resources

The following section provides links to a range of reports and web resources available for Macquarie Harbo​​ur: