Queensland is Australia’s most naturally diverse state. From the vibrant Barrier Reef to lush tropical rainforests, rich agricultural belts and vast, dry deserts.
In Queensland, we have it all. That’s what makes our natural heritage so unique and unmatched by any other.
To ensure we continue to improve and maintain Queensland’s natural environment when planning for the future, we need the species and ecosystems data and policies to be easier to find and use.
That’s what the Department of Environment and Science (formerly Department of Environment and Heritage Protection) set as their latest challenge, through the Advance Queensland Testing Within Government (TWiG) program.
The TWiG program provides small to medium enterprises (SMEs) with the opportunity to collaborate with Queensland Government departments and solve business problems using innovative solutions.
Inturo, a local leader in technology development, offered an innovative solution, by building a mobile app to expand and improve community access to information on Queensland species and ecosystems.
Hugh Rees, Inturo Managing Director said they embraced the challenge of providing better access to biodiversity information, and have made it accessible for everyone, not just for people with specialised skills or knowledge to understand it.
“Currently there are several sources of data to help farmers and industry plan for developments,” Hugh said.
“We were able to bring all that data into one easy-to-use mobile app and website portal, called Crosschecker.
“The app brings together data and information from various technologies, cross references it with policies, legislation and compliance information, then presents this in one easily accessible place.
“The app is capable of performing a search on a property, and returning all flora and fauna in relation to the site, with matching descriptions and pictures.
“It will return information on protected plant life, and also allows you to visualise the area selected in the app.
“By simplifying the complexities that surround legislative compliance, and improving access to the information, developers and biodiversity organisations now have the information at their fingertips. This allows them to work within the law, without the worry of costly compliance breaches.
“Sustainable development is possible, but it requires solutions like Crosschecker that recognise and protect our natural heritage.”
The Testing Within Government program provides small and medium enterprises with funding of up to $25,000 and the opportunity to collaborate with Queensland Government to solve business problems by using innovative solutions.
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Technology helps maintain our natural biodiversity was originally published in Advance Queensland on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.