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Brisbane Rivers...

Brisbane Rivers

Brisbane Rivers

Australia, Asia Pacific
Covering 3.5 million hectares in South Queensland, the Brisbane Rivers ecosystem is a biodiversity hotspot. It includes the Gondwana Rainforests Heritage Area and Moreton Bay Ramsar site and is home to iconic animal species like koala, lungfish, dugong, platypus and eastern curlew.

Without long-term investment and conservation, the Brisbane Rivers ecosystem faces catastrophic ecological collapse within a decade. Healthy Land and Water are working with the Landscape Finance Lab to create a large, long-term investment programme to restore the ecological infrastructure of Brisbane Rivers on which liveability depends on. The programme will focus on restoring the river habitat, water quality and koala forests.

Brisbane River panorama ©Zstock on Adobe Stock
Brisbane River panorama ©Zstock on Adobe Stock
Brisbane suburb flooded ©On-Air on Adobe Stock
Brisbane suburb flooded ©On-Air on Adobe Stock

The river ecosystem is valued at AUD 7 billion annually, but flood damage in the region incurred over AUD 7 billion in recovery costs during 2022. There are further correlated impacts that undermine the resilience of natural systems on which life depends on - for instance new algal blooms will emerge undermining farm and fishery productivity and threatening drinking water supply.


Healthy Land and Water along with the Lab and consortium partners want to steer investment into restorative land use and regenerative business practices. Over three phases, this programme will build a landscape finance instrument that shows pathways to scalable investment approaches - including carbon and biodiversity payments and policy packages that incentivise regenerative development. Phase 1 went live in 2023 and focuses on structuring the project (evidence gathering, stakeholder engagement, action planning) with Phase 2 (Design and Fund) projected to go live in 2024-2025.

As the population in South East Queensland grows rapidly, there is a greater demand for housing and infrastructure. Such infrastructure is fragmenting large forested areas and threatening iconics species like koalas. Similarly, the area’s development has led to ecological ‘chaos’ in the river system which makes the area dramatically at risk of flooding.

Koala © Steve Franklin on Unsplash
Koala © Steve Franklin on Unsplash
Total Area
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2,300,000 Hectares
Ecosystem Type
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Wetlands & Peatlands
Wetlands & Peatlands
Coastal & Reef
Coastal & Reef
Commodity Production Landscapes
Commodity Production Landscapes
activity types
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Carbon storage and/or sequestration
Ecotourism
Protected areas
Landscape and marine corridors
Flood regulation
Sustainable fishing
Landscape Approaches
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Catchment/basin management
Integrated water resources management
Ecosystem restoration landscape
Green economy landscape
Species protection landscape
commodities
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Fisheries/Seafood
funding Source
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Public
Incubation stage
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1
Discover
2
Structure
3
Develop
4
Fund
Sustainable Development Goals
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Goal 6: Clean water and sanitation
Goal 11: Sustainable cities and communities
Goal 13: Climate action
Goal 14: Life below water
Goal 15: Life on land
Goal 17: Partnerships for the goals