|Title||Stakeholder Participation in Estuary Management: The Development of Victoria’s Estuary Entrance Management Support System (EEMSS)|
|Publication Type||Journal Article|
|Year of Publication||2013|
|Authors||Keneley M., O'Toole K., Coffey B., Macgarvey A.|
|Journal||Australian Journal of Environmental Management|
|Keywords||coastal zone management, community participation, decision support system, engagement, estuary management, Victoria|
Stakeholder involvement in the management of estuaries is a necessary element of good environmental governance. In Victoria, Australia, a key challenge for estuary managers is whether or not estuaries should be artificially opened since many river mouths close ‘naturally’ from time to time. Estuary closure resulting in raised estuarine water levels leads to economic and social impacts on local communities. In the past these effects have been addressed by artificial river mouth openings, often without reference to associated environmental impacts. This article discusses the development and features of an Estuary Entrance Management Support System and considers its performance against principles of effective environmental management. It concludes that, in bringing together technical information with stakeholder input through a structured process, such a system makes a useful contribution to improving estuary entrance management.