Waterway condition in Victoria is assessed using the Index of Stream Condition (ISC). The ISC assesses changes in hydrology, water quality, streamside vegetation, bed and bank condition, in-stream habitat and aquatic macro-invertebrate (water bug) diversity.
The condition of waterways within the Goulburn Broken catchment is presented in Figure 1 and Figure 2, which shows the percentage of streams in each condition category.
Figure 1 - Broken Basin (ISC) Results 2010 Figure 2 - Goulburn Basin (ISC) Results 2010
Values and Threats
The local community and visitors to the region identify with a range of waterway values they regard as important to maintain and protect, including:
- Recreational fishing
- Native flora and fauna
- Water supply for townships, stock and domestic
- Water supply for agriculture and industry
- Tourism and recreation
- Cultural heritage
- Aesthetic and lifestyle.
Threatening activities and processes to waterways, include (but are not limited to):
- Catchment clearing
- Climate change
- Groundwater extraction
- Pest plant and animal invasion
- Snag removal
- Stock access to riparian land
- Waterway regulation and flow diversion
- Environmental flows (impact on recreational values)
- River channel hydrology (rates of rise and fall, unseasonal flow)
- Wave action (e.g. jet and water skiing)
- Urban and agricultural development.