Offshore environments present rehabilitation challenges with unique ecosystems and logistical constraints. Astron designed and implemented a rehabilitation program for a client, which involved propagating and planting a number of poorly-understood flora species into an altered landform. Two of these species were locally significant and key to the vegetation community being recreated.
Astron developed a Rehabilitation Plan that outlined the methods, key performance indicators and monitoring design. A nursery was established on-site and various propagation techniques were trialled simultaneously to reduce risks associated with plant mortality. Other key challenges that were addressed during implementation of the Rehabilitation Plan were; site remoteness, quarantine requirements, limited source plant material and the short timeframe.
Over the course of one year, plant material was collected from the vegetation community prior to clearing, it was then propagated, planted and monitored. The landform was successfully rehabilitated with the target species and key performance indicators were achieved at the time of final monitoring.
Monitoring was designed to ensure that the activities undertaken provided scientifically robust data that would inform future rehabilitation works, maximising the output of the project without adding cost. The lessons learnt on this project will be used to plan future rehabilitation works.