An integrated assessment of financial, hydrological, ecological and social impacts of 'development' on Indigenous and non-Indigenous people in northern Australia

Natalie Stoeckl, S JACKSON, F Pantus, M FINN, Mark Kennard, Bradley Pusey

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

    Abstract

    We use data and insights from several inter-related but independent projects conducted over 6 years (2006–11) in the Daly River catchment in Australia’s Northern Territory to explore the potential impacts of ‘development’ on Indigenous and non-Indigenous residents. We do this by combining economic,
    hydrological, and ecological data and models into an integrated model. We then use the model to assess the effect of six different types of economic ‘development’ on water resources, the habitat of aquatic resources and the incomes of Indigenous and non-Indigenous people. We combine this information with estimates of the value of aquatic resources consumed by local Indigenous people to generate estimates of the potential net impact of those development scenarios. We also discuss other social and cultural impacts likely to be associated with the degradation of aquatic resources.

    Our analysis shows that Indigenous people not only have more to lose from ‘development’ which erodes natural capital than do non-Indigenous people, but they also have significantly less to gain. Under current institutional arrangements it thus seems that, at best, ‘development’ may have a relatively benign impact on their well-being. At worst, it may have a detrimental effect brought about by degradation of local aquatic ecosystems.

    There are negative spill-over effects from development for non-Indigenous people too. Evidently some conservation land uses – which tend to align more closely with current Indigenous cultural prerogatives – may be better able to effectively promote the well-being of both Indigenous and non-Indigenous people than more conventional types of ‘development’.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)214-221
    Number of pages8
    JournalBiological Conservation
    Volume159
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2013

    Fingerprint

    social impact
    ecological impact
    indigenous peoples
    resource
    natural capital
    aquatic ecosystem
    Northern Territory
    degradation
    aquatic habitat
    economic development
    water resource
    income
    water resources
    catchment
    land use
    habitat
    economics
    river
    rivers
    effect

    Cite this

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    abstract = "We use data and insights from several inter-related but independent projects conducted over 6 years (2006–11) in the Daly River catchment in Australia’s Northern Territory to explore the potential impacts of ‘development’ on Indigenous and non-Indigenous residents. We do this by combining economic,hydrological, and ecological data and models into an integrated model. We then use the model to assess the effect of six different types of economic ‘development’ on water resources, the habitat of aquatic resources and the incomes of Indigenous and non-Indigenous people. We combine this information with estimates of the value of aquatic resources consumed by local Indigenous people to generate estimates of the potential net impact of those development scenarios. We also discuss other social and cultural impacts likely to be associated with the degradation of aquatic resources.Our analysis shows that Indigenous people not only have more to lose from ‘development’ which erodes natural capital than do non-Indigenous people, but they also have significantly less to gain. Under current institutional arrangements it thus seems that, at best, ‘development’ may have a relatively benign impact on their well-being. At worst, it may have a detrimental effect brought about by degradation of local aquatic ecosystems.There are negative spill-over effects from development for non-Indigenous people too. Evidently some conservation land uses – which tend to align more closely with current Indigenous cultural prerogatives – may be better able to effectively promote the well-being of both Indigenous and non-Indigenous people than more conventional types of ‘development’.",
    author = "Natalie Stoeckl and S JACKSON and F Pantus and M FINN and Mark Kennard and Bradley Pusey",
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    An integrated assessment of financial, hydrological, ecological and social impacts of 'development' on Indigenous and non-Indigenous people in northern Australia. / Stoeckl, Natalie; JACKSON, S; Pantus, F; FINN, M; Kennard, Mark; Pusey, Bradley.

    In: Biological Conservation, Vol. 159, 2013, p. 214-221.

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

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