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Eastern Cape York Water Quality Improvement Plan - Appendix 10: Risk assessment of degraded water quality to ecosystems

This risk assessment was developed to help gain scientifically accurate information regarding the land-based pollutants which pose the biggest threat to coral reefs and sea grass beds in the Great Barrier Reef (GBR). The three most significant pollutants found in the Great Barrier Reef are suspended sediments from erosion, excess nutrients, and pesticides from agricultural practices along the eastern Cape York Peninsula. This risk assessment provides substantial information which allows effective prioritisation of management practices for sources of pollutionalong the eastern coast of the Cape.

The risk of degraded water quality within the basins of the Cape York region was detemined by combining information on the ecological risk of an influx of low quality water to a region of sea grass meadows or coral reef ecosystems in the GBR lagoon with information on the end-of-catchment pollutant loads.

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