Restoring our rivers
Restoring our rivers
Most waterways in Western Australia are modified to some degree and some have been extensively altered so that they retain few of their natural features or values. Waterway restoration may be necessary to maintain or improve their environmental, social and economic services.
Waterway restoration aims to protect and restore the physical form and ecological processes of a waterway in a way that supports it to progress toward its natural state.
The Department of Water supports government agencies, industry, natural resource management groups, communities and individuals with planning, implementing and evaluating waterway management activities, including by preparing waterways management plans and supporting river action plans for priority waterways.
We provide guidance and technical expertise about river restoration and management. This includes addressing hydrological issues, restoring channel alignment and form, erosion and sedimentation, stabilising banks, pool and riffle construction, designing fishways, identifying and protecting foreshore areas and the design of living streams.
We also assist with collating and analysing water monitoring data which is used to design and evaluate waterway restoration projects. This includes data on water quality, ecological water requirements and trends in the hydrological regime, including water levels.
This list contains key links and resources to help with assessing, planning, monitoring and restoring waterways:
- Assessing waterway health provides guidance about methods of assessing waterway condition (such as foreshore condition assessment) to inform restoration planning, and to monitor effectiveness of restoration and management efforts.
- Framework for prioritisation of waterways for management in Western Australia is a planning tool for natural resource and land managers. It provides a consistent and transparent approach to setting priorities for waterways management that can help identify where to focus restoration efforts. It ranks waterways in terms of their ecological, social and economic values and also according to their level of threat. Based on these rankings, waterways are broad categories and appropriate management responses for each of these categories are proposed.
- Water notes and Water facts provide an introduction and general guide to waterway and wetland ecology, restoration and management. See also Building creek crossings.
- The River Restoration Manual is a series of publications that outline the basic principles of how waterways in south-west Western Australia function and provides guidelines for the planning, restoration and long-term management of waterways in Western Australia.
- Foreshores for waterways protection - information about identifying and protecting an appropriate foreshore area which may be necessary prior to restoration, and preparing a foreshore management plan.
- Living streams - advice about restoring highly modified urban waterways and artificial drains to improve water quality and other values.
- Protecting our environment and the Environmental water provisions policy for Western Australia - information about our policy in relation to maintaining water flows to support waterway and other environmental values when we make decisions about how much water is available for human purposes.
- Water quality protection notes provide information about managing threats to water quality in the context of a range of land uses and activities.
- Rivercare projects : successes, impediments, learnings : 1997-1998, 1999, and 2000 – three reports that evaluate previous Western Australian waterways restoration projects.
- Managing waterways in the Avon wheatbelt: field guide - assists all landowners and land managers (including local and state government) to protect and improve waterways and riparian land in the Avon Wheatbelt region and manage the issues that affect them, including salinity, sediments, weeds and fire.
- A guide to managing and restoring wetlands in Western Australia may be a useful source of advice for the management and restoration of wetlands associated with waterways.