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Current Research Project

Subterranean Ecology is currently collaborating on an exciting project focused on ecology research to address critical priorities concerning ecohydrological responses to coal seam gas extraction and coal mining. The Office of Water Science, Department of Environment, has commissioned a multidisciplinary consortium, led by Griffith University and including the University of New South Wales, Edith Cowan University and Subterranean Ecology Pty Ltd, to carry out a research program in 2015-2016.  

The current project involves an integrated programme of research that addresses key elements within each of four major components: (1) Ecohydrology of groundwater dependent terrestrial vegetation; (2) Ecological values of base-flow and surface water-groundwater connectivity regimes in non-perennial streams; (3) Hydrogeochemistry, biogeochemical processes and the hyporheos / stygofauna; (4) Composition and resilience of Great Artesian Basin spring communities.   Click here to access the current research project flyer.

Component 3 is being undertaken by Subterranean Ecology and the University of New South Wales Connected Waters Research Initiative Centre. This component aims to understand how changes in hyporheic exchange and biogeochemical conditions affect the ecological conditions for hyporheos and stygofauna. More specifically this component will look at how changes in hydrology, especially groundwater drawdown, affect organic carbon cycling, nutrient cycling, redox biogeochemical and microbial processes, and hyporheos and stygofauna.

The research components were scoped at a workshop in July 2014 and published in a report titled Modelling water-related ecological responses to coal seam gas extraction and coal mining. Click here to access the 2014 workshop report