This website has been created to provide the community with up-to-date information about the Moreton Bay Oil Spill Environmental Restoration Program and allow project partners to upload the results of their fieldwork and monitoring programs onto the uniDap Web Database.
On Wednesday, 11 March 2009, the Pacific Adventurer, battered by Cyclone Hamish, leaked an estimated 276 tonnes of heavy fuel oil into Moreton Bay, 13 kilometres off the coast of Cape Moreton, near Brisbane.
The oil washed ashore onto beaches, rocky reefs and mangroves on the north-eastern side of Moreton and Bribie Islands, and onto beaches and mangrove wetlands between Caloundra and Coolum Beach on the Sunshine Coast. Many of the affected areas were located within the Moreton Bay Marine Park and the Moreton Bay Ramsar site.
A huge clean-up operation led by Maritime Safety Queensland and the Department of Environment and Resource Management (DERM) was implemented, with all affected beaches officially declared clean by May 2009.
With the emergency clean-up operation complete, the project moved to an assessment and restoration phase. The Australian Government allocated $2 million from Caring for our Country funding, to SEQ Catchments, to implement a community-based environmental restoration program, to be complete by June 2010.
SEQ Catchments devolved this funding through a competitive Expressions of Interest (EOI) process. The Program received tremendous support from government, Traditional Owners and community groups, and five project applications were successfully funded. Total funding approved for the five projects being approximately $1.3 million, with contributions provided by partner groups pushing the total value to $3.5 million. Further funds will devolved through a second funding round opening in November 2009 and closing December 17, 2009.
The successful projects involve recovery works such as revegetation, weed removal, dune stabilisation, pest management, erosion control, monitoring of flora and fauna species and traditional knowledge recording. The projects are being coordinated by a variety of organisations and include collaborations between Traditional Owner groups, DERM, local government and volunteer community groups.
The outcomes from these projects will support substantial ecosystem recovery from the oil spill and provide for rigorous assessment of coastal flora and fauna species and ecological processes.
The success of on-ground works and assessment programs can in turn be used to inform coastal management plans and help to build greater resilience in coastal ecosystems.
For further information, or if you would like to submit a Expression of Interest for the second round of funding, please contact Sean Galvin or Sam Lloyd, details available on the "Contacts" page.
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