Yarra
& Bay

Current Alerts 5 currently active, find out more »

Mornington Catchment

Land Use

Urban

Rural

Forest

Water Quality Index

Very Good

Good

Fair

Poor

Very Poor

See the ‘Mornington Catchment’ page for a detailed description of the catchment.

Report Card for July 2014 – June 2013

This Report Card provides an overview of water quality in the Mornington catchment from 1 July 2013 to 30 June 2014. The quality of the water is given an overall score by combining the results of six standard water quality parameters: nutrients, water clarity (turbidity), dissolved oxygen, salinity (conductivity), pH (acidity/alkalinity) and metals.

Summary Table: The table below shows the percentage of the Mornington catchment that falls into each scoring category. See scoring method for more information.

Area Score
0%

Very Good
Near-natural high quality waterways

0%

Good
Meets Victorian water quality standards

0%

Fair
Some evidence of stress

21%

Poor
Under considerable stress

Small tributaries in the urbanised beach suburbs

79%

Very Poor
Under severe stress

Rural drainage to small tributaries in urbanised beach suburbs

The routine monthly monitoring across five sites accounts for 94 per cent of the catchment. The remaining 6 per cent of unmonitored catchment is urban and typically scores as Poor for this region.

What do the results mean?

The results show that water quality in the Mornington catchment is generally ‘Very Poor’.

Water quality in waterways of the Mornington is influenced by runoff from intensive horticultural and farming activities in the central part of the catchment.

Polluted runoff from urban coastal towns and industrial areas also contribute to the poor water quality scores. Metals carried in runoff are a particular problem.

Monitoring sites that are situated along the coast tend to be affected by runoff from the upper rural areas as well as runoff from urban areas along the coast.

Although water quality scores were ‘Poor’ to ‘Very Poor’ in the smaller waterways of the Mornington catchment, some water quality parameters such as water clarity and pH were rated ‘Fair’ to ‘Very Good’.

Bar chart showing WQI and indicator scores for Mornington Catchment Bar chart showing WQI and indicator scores for Mornington Catchment

PortPhillipBayEPAVictoria.png Mornington coastline. Source: EPA Victoria

Changes over time

Overall, water quality has been ‘Poor’ to ‘Very Poor’ in the Mornington catchment over the past 13 years.

Improvements in water quality can be difficult to achieve in catchments with heavy urban or agricultural land use, where the polluting activities are diverse and spread-widely across the catchment.

Therefore, the installation of rainwater tanks, rain gardens and roadside swales play an important role in reducing runoff that transports these pollutants into waterways.

Plot of WQI history for Mornington Catchment Plot of WQI history for Mornington Catchment"

MothersbeachLygbyaAlgalBloomEPAVictoria2.jpg Lyngbya Bloom, Mothers Beach. Source: EPA Victoria

Compare to other Catchments

The following figures show a comparison of scores for each identified water quality indicator in the catchments and Port Phillip Bay.

Diagram of nutrient score history for catchments and bay

Diagram of oxygen score history for catchments and bay

Diagram of water clarity score history for catchments and bay

Diagram of salinity score history for catchments and bay

Diagram of score history for catchments and bay

Diagram of metals score history for catchments and bay

Program Partners

Department of Environment and Primary Industries Environmental Protection Agency Melbourne Water