Abstract: The Great Barrier Reef World Heritage Area (WHA) is one of the most precious and diverse ecosystems on Earth. It is highly valued by people within Australia and worldwide and is critical to the cultural, economic and social wellbeing of local and regional communities and Australians more generally. However, the WHA is under pressure with system-wide declines in condition of the Reef.
The Reef Joint Field Management Program (the Program) plans and delivers on-ground actions to protect many of the Outstanding Universal Values of the WHA . While wider efforts to rein in the magnitude of climate change and improve water quality take time to bite the Program provides critical information on condition of many values in the WHA, enforces the zoning plan to maintain marine ecosystem resilience and manages all aspects of island national parks. It is run jointly by the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority and Queensland Department of Environment and Science through the Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service. It also has collaborations with allied government agencies, First Nations people, research institutions, reef-dependent industries and the community.
In this talk, I will provide an overview of the Program’s priorities and how the partnership between the Queensland and Australian Government is governed. I will present insights to five exciting case studies of projects that are happening across the Reef. We will then open the floor to a Q&A session with the A/Director Field Management Strategy (Dr Mark Read), Principal Ranger (Dr Graham Hemson) and Principal Advisor (Mrs Jackie Chappell).
Biography: Isabel has a Masters degree in Marine Biology from James Cook University, Australia and a Masters degree in Business from Maastricht, Netherlands. Her career started as Communications Officer for the Save Our Seas Foundation, before joining the Manta Trust NGO in 2014 as Head of Conservation Strategy. Over five years Isabel led a global manta and devil ray conservation program funded by the Shark Conservation Fund, Save Our Seas Foundation and the IUCN. This included work across research, policy and community outreach in parts through affiliation with James Cook University. In 2019 she joined Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service as Communications Officer for the Great Barrier Reef and Marine Parks Region. In partnership with the Great Barrier Reef Marine Park Authority she develops communications and media about the on-ground actions to protect the World Heritage Area in line with the Reef 2050 Plan and Reef Blueprint report.