This product presents the impact and risk analysis for the Hunter subregion. The structure is as follows:
- Section 3.1 describes the scope of the BA conducted for the Hunter subregion and summarises the critical philosophical and operational choices.
- Section 3.2 describes the methods for assessing impacts and risks in the Hunter subregion. It includes details of the databases, tools and geoprocessing that support the impact and risk analysis, and the approach to aggregating potential impacts to landscape classes and assets. The approach is consistent with that outlined in companion submethodology M10 (as listed in Table 1) for analysing impacts and risks (Henderson et al., 2018), and is in addition to the methods for receptor impact modelling reported in companion product 2.7 for the Hunter subregion (Hosack et al., 2018).
- Section 3.3 provides a closer look at the spatial extent of hydrological changes within the zone of potential hydrological change, using a subset of the hydrological response variables defined in companion submethodology M06 (as listed in Table 1) for surface water modelling (Viney, 2016). The reported surface water hydrological response variables represent changes in low flows, high flows and annual flow due to additional coal resource development. While not explicitly modelled, the potential for additional coal resource development to impact water quality is reported in this section.
- Section 3.4 considers the impacts on and risks to landscape classes within the zone of potential hydrological change due to additional coal resource development. An aggregated, system-level analysis of potential impacts is possible at the scale of the landscape class. A ‘rule-out’ process identifies landscape classes that are very unlikely to be impacted due to hydrological changes. The impacts on and risks to landscape classes are assessed either quantitatively using the receptor impact models described in companion product 2.7 for the Hunter subregion (Hosack et al., 2018), or more qualitatively using the qualitative mathematical models developed through expert elicitation (Hosack et al., 2018).
- Section 3.5 considers the impacts on and risks to water-dependent assets in the zone of potential hydrological change due to additional coal resource development at the asset level. The analysis focuses predominantly on asset groups, not on each individual asset. It includes ecological, economic and sociocultural assets.
- Section 3.6 assesses the potential hydrological changes and impacts due to the additional coal resource developments that were not modelled. These include Mandalong Southern Extension underground, Wambo underground, West Muswellbrook open-cut and Wilpinjong open-cut.
- Section 3.7 concludes with key findings and knowledge gaps. Commentary is provided on how to validate and build on this assessment in the future.
The companion product 2.7 for the Hunter subregion (Hosack et al., 2018) summarises the overarching methodology and development of the Hunter subregion qualitative mathematical models and receptor impact models used to make predictions about the potential impacts on ecosystems reported in Section 3.4. As such, it serves as an appendix to this product.
15 March 2019
Summary and download
Product Finalisation date
- 3.1 Overview
- 3.2 Methods
- 3.3 Potential hydrological changes
- 3.4 Impacts on and risks to landscape classes
- 3.5 Impacts on and risks to water-dependent assets
- 3.6 Commentary for coal resource developments that are not modelled
- 3.7 Conclusion
- Contributors to the Technical Programme
- About this technical product