New system to manage Queensland stock routes

THE Queensland Government has responded to ongoing drought conditions in Queensland by providing a new online stock route management system to help local governments manage the network.

Minister for Natural Resources Andrew Cripps launched the new system, which he said would deliver timelier and more transparent management of Queensland's 2.6 million hectare stock route network.

"Queensland's network vital to the cattle industry as it provides important travelling routes and reserves for travelling stock," Mr Cripps said.

"We need to ensure information is readily and easily accessible to local councils who keep the routes maintained for our graziers.

"In the past councils had to rely on bush telegraph to find out if routes were opened or closed, in good condition or poor, and if watering stations along the routes were operating.

"Councils will now be able better manage the network in their area, ensure the more heavily used routes are prioritised for maintenance and can highlight which sections of the network can be made available for grazing when there is little demand for use by travelling stock.

"The web based system will clearly identify all travelling stock traffic plus identify routes closed due to lack of pasture or water.

"Councils will also be able to issue travel permits, agistment permits and water agreements online.

"This system will help strengthen the agriculture pillar of the Queensland economy."

DNRM partnered with mapping giant Esri Australia to develop the first-of-its-kind tool, which draws on Geographic Information System (GIS) technology to visually represent stock route data via an interactive 'smart map'.

Esri Australia Managing Director Brett Bundock said the system sets a new benchmark in the deployment of GIS technology - particularly in establishing a  cross-authority collaboration tool.

"GIS technology is widely known for delivering considerable productivity gains to organisations; however this is the first time the technology has been used to provide all councils with a single state-wide view of stock route information," Mr Bundock said.

"The technology delivers an unprecedented level of clarity and precision to support decision makers - whether they're determining the most appropriate route for cattle movements, or issuing travel permits to stock owners. 

"In terms of GIS technology deployment, this system represents a paradigm shift - and it will no doubt serve as a blueprint for cross-organisation collaboration in other sectors, such as emergency services."

More information on Queensland's stock route network and the new online management system is available here or by phoning 13 QGOV (7468).

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