Science impacts of the NRP
The Ningaloo Research Programs Legacy
Successes of the Ningaloo Research Program (NRP) have been numerous and include:
- providing baseline information about abundance, diversity and distribution for different marine species that inhabit the marine park
- developing detailed patterns of activities of people along the coast and how those relate to access roads and other infrastructure
- the production of highly accurate and detailed maps of the physical and biological components of the reef, lagoon and terrestrial systems
- studies on the impacts of tourism on the park to predict the potential effects of different development plans on environmental, economic and social outcomes
- developed a better understanding of the influence of physical and biological processes on the distribution of different marine species
- explored cost effective methods for monitoring the park’s marine biodiversity and reef health along with the natural and human pressures they face
- computer models that act like “flight simulators” to assist planners and managers to play out different scenarios and management options which evaluate the potential impacts on the economy, the community, tourism and natural resources; and assist to resolve trade-offs between development and conservation
As part of executing the NRP researchers worked with a wide range of stakeholders to identify what information and key communication processes are required for integrated coastal management to be improved and maintained for the long term.
The scale of the findings demonstrates the benefits of coordinated research to achieve results beyond the capacity of individual research organisations.