1.3 Description of the water-dependent asset register

Developing a water-dependent asset register

There are four steps involved in developing a water-dependent asset register.

Step 1 – Organise the asset data

Natural resource management organisations developed the Water Asset Information Tool for the bioregional assessments by collating lists of assets that the community identified as having economic, ecological or sociocultural value. 

The asset database was developed for each bioregion or subregion by adding more information to the Water Asset Information Tool. Information added includes:

  • datasets of assets from local, state and national government (including the Queensland Department of Natural Resources and Mines, the New South Wales Office of Water, the Australian Heritage database, the Register of National Estates and both state and Commonwealth threatened species lists)
  • information gathered at community workshops
  • information in literature reviews
  • content gathered at meetings with natural resource managers and experts with local knowledge (including Indigenous knowledge).

Step 2 – Define the preliminary assessment extent

Preliminary assessment extent is the area that may be affected by changes to water caused by coal resource development.

In some areas the PAE may extend beyond the bioregion or subregion boundary. For example it is possible that a coal mining project might affect the land down river from the bioregion boundary, then the PAE is extended to include this area.

Defining the PAE ensures the bioregional assessment considers all areas that are potentially impacted by a coal resource development.

Step 3 – Create an asset list

The asset list is created by refining the asset database to include only those assets that meet the requirements of a bioregional assessment. For example, the assets must lie geographically within the preliminary assessment extent.

Step 4 – Develop the water-dependent asset register

The water-dependent asset register was created by further refining the asset list to include only those assets that are dependent on water (for example, dams, wetlands, habitats of threatened species and bores).

The assessment team tested whether anything was missing from the water-dependent asset register with organisations and experts with local knowledge at workshops. Changes were made if required.

Potential impacts on this list of 'registered' assets were assessed in later components of the assessment.

Things to know about water-dependent asset registers

  • The register associated with this product was extracted from the asset database at a certain point in time. The asset database can be updated. The version of the asset database used in the bioregional assessment as well as the latest version of the asset database are available at
  • Assets can appear in more than one category. For example, an asset can be considered ecological as well as sociocultural.
  • Some ecological assets are solely dependent on incident rainfall. These are not included in the register unless there is a clear link to groundwater or surface water.
  • An asset may be a single thing, such as a lake. An asset may also be a number of the same thing, such as separate patches of the same forest type, or a series of similar wetlands.
  • The water-dependent asset register contains important natural assets in the bioregion or subregion, where 'important' is defined by the community. The identification of these assets does not assume any impact from coal seam gas or coal mining development. Whether these assets are or are not affected by coal resource developments is considered in the later components of the bioregional assessment.