The Victorian Government and CMAs produce a range of progress reports for the Victorian Waterway Management Program to meet the needs of various stakeholders. This helps ensure strong financial accountability and that agreed performance targets are met. Melbourne Water have different reporting and evaluation requirements than the other CMA waterway managers, which reflect their separate accountability to the Essential Services Commission.
Delivery and achievements of these regional waterway management programs are reported through a variety of documents, including:
- Six monthly and annual project reporting by CMAs to DELWP;
- Annual output reporting in state budget papers;
- Annual delivery reporting required for programs funded by the Environmental Contribution;
- CMA annual reports and corporate plans; and
- Reporting related to specific initiatives, for example the Regional Riparian Action Plan.
Data from these reporting processes is also used to publicly communicate progress against state-wide targets for improving waterway health, as described in the Victorian Waterway Management Strategy; chapter 3.
Periodic assessment of management activities, regional programs and state-wide policy is required to determine their effectiveness, and of the Victorian Waterway Management Program as a whole. Assessment is undertaken in accordance with predetermined key evaluation questions and the information used to adapt management if required and achieve continuous improvement.
Mid-point review of the Strategy
At the mid point of the Victorian Waterway Management Strategy (2013-2020), all of the ten management outcome targets were exceeded or are on track (Table 1). This significant progress demonstrates what can be achieved through large scale investment in waterway and catchment health. This is revitalising entire waterways and improving habitat for our threatened species – like the Growling Grass Frog and Variegated Pygmy Perch.
Table 1: mid-term progress against targets in the Victorian Waterway Management Strategy 2013
Statewide progress against 2016 targets: Δ denotes target exceeded; ◊ denotes target on track:
Area of improved riparian vegetation (hectares)
Area of improved wetland vegetation (hectares)
Number of sites with environmental water managed
Area of land managed for pest plant and animals (hectares)
Number of sites with improved instream habitat
Area of land with management agreements (hectares)
Number of community members with increased capacity
Number of sites with improved waterway knowledge
% advice and approvals completed within statutory timeframes
% management activities undertaken on priority waterways (as defined in the regional waterway strategies)
Please note that Melbourne Water does not receive funding from government through the Victorian Waterway Management Program and its outcomes are not included in the progress table.
For more information, read the Victorian Waterway Management Strategy Mid-Term Progress Report (2013-2016) (PDF, 346.2 KB) or accessible version (DOCX, 4.7 MB).
Reporting is also used to highlight the great collaborative partnerships between regional agencies and stakeholders, including project highlights and achievements that have special value to local communities.
The Victorian Environmental Water Holder is required to report on when, where, how and why environmental water is used.
Information about the use, management and outcomes of environmental watering is outlined in the annual environmental watering booklet.
For copies of these reports go to Victorian Environmental Water Holder website.
2021 Review of the Strategy
In 2021, an independent review of the Strategy was completed, in accordance with Action 17.11 of the Strategy. The independent review is a key activity in the evaluation and reporting stage of the Strategy's eight-year adaptive management approach.
The main purposes of the review were to:
- provide a high-level evaluation of the Strategy, including what went well, the appropriateness of the Strategy, and any challenges with implementation;
- appraise the success, strengths and weaknesses of the Strategy as a policy framework for the management of waterways; and identify key areas for
- improvement for the next strategy based on the learnings from the current Strategy.
The independent review has helped us understand the key strengths, limitations and lessons learnt from the current Strategy. This is a key foundational piece for the renewal of the Strategy, which is proposed for completion in 2023.
The independent review was conducted by RM Consulting Group and took place between November 2020 and May 2021, towards the end of the eight-year cycle of the Strategy. The review was guided by an independent expert panel, comprised of industry experts with significant scientific and policy expertise in waterway management Dr Tamara Boyd, Dr Sandra Brizga, Professor Barry Hart and Professor Ian Rutherfurd.
Read the Review:
Page last updated: 11/10/21