Marine Biota Monitoring Project

Project Overview

Annual marine biota monitoring surveys at the Twofold Bay Multi-Purpose Wharf in Eden NSW were required to support the Royal Australian Navy activities. Construction and operational approvals for the facility require annual monitoring to demonstrate environmental controls for the facility. Naval vessel activities and wharf activities have potential to impact upon sensitive environmental receptors within Twofold Bay. This includes naval vessel transit within Australian and International waters which has potential of introducing or trans-locating marine pests to Twofold Bay, principally as a result of bio fouling introductions. 

Our Role

Eco balance was engaged to assist with this project’s field studies which included:

  • Conducting a Marine Biota Monitoring investigation in a manner that complies with the Operational Environmental Management Plan (OEMP) and its associated Marine Ecology Management Plan;
  • Determining if any changes to the marine biota can be attributed to the Royal Australian Navy’s activities; and
  • Determining if changes were identified provide recommendations on impact mitigation measures. 


Based on the findings there appears to be no significant changes in the overall condition or status of the marine biota of Twofold Bay that can be attributed to the ongoing activities associated with the wharf and jetty. Based on the findings and conclusions of this study the following recommendations were made:

  • Monitoring of the site should continue at the frequency detailed in the OEMP, as there is ongoing potential for additional impacts to the marine biota of the bay as a result of activities associated with the wharf and jetty.  
  • To facilitate meaningful temporal comparison of results over successive years, future surveys should be conducted during the same season (preferably February/March).
  • To facilitate meaningful temporal comparison of results over successive years a central electronic database should be established (e.g. Excel spreadsheet); which is supplied to future survey teams, containing past raw data in a standardised format.
  • A standardised method should be established for conducting the fish diversity component of the monitoring study.  Alternatively, this component should be replaced with a requirement to analyse commercial fisheries catch data. 


Eden, NSW Australia.


SMEC Pty Ltd.