Community engagement

​​​​​​​Australia’s north is vast and sparsely populated with a coastline over 10,000km long. The development potential of northern Australia’s agricultural industries is significant. However the expansion of agricultural enterprises and increased shipping, trade, movement of materials and people into and around northern Australia create new and growing animal, plant pest and disease risks.

A strong biosecurity system is everyone’s business and involves community, industry and government. It helps us identify and manage biosecurity threats early to keep our communities viable, our farms profitable, and to protect our way of life now and for future generations.​​

Virtual reality experience

Cutting-edge virtual reality technology is showcasing the work of biosecurity officers and Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander rangers across northern Australia.

The Department of Agriculture and Water Resources in partnership with Cairns-based Indigenous owned and operated business, enVizion, have developed an educational virtual reality experience – ‘Biosecurity, It’s Everyone’s Business’.

Five short educational videos filmed in 360 degree footage take the viewer on a virtual field trip, showcasing biosecurity work in northern Australia, through locations such as Broome, Darwin, Horn Island, Bamaga and the Daintree rainforest.

To participate the viewer watches through a virtual reality headset creating a totally immersive experience, which can be enjoyed by everyone regardless of age and levels of language or literacy.

The headset transports the viewer to remote areas to meet rangers and biosecurity officers one-on-one to hear the stories of their chosen career and experience the importance of the northern coastline.

The innovative technology will be showcased to remote communities during community tours from enVizion and their virtual reality bus.

The department’s community liaison officers will also take the virtual reality headsets to communities as part of their collaboration with ranger groups in northern Australia.

The 360 degree ‘Biosecurity – It’s Everyone’s Business’ video is an initiative of the Australian Government’s Agricultural Competitiveness and Developing Northern Australia White Papers, the government’s plan for stronger farmers, a stronger economy and a safe, secure Australia.

This video is a 2-dimensional version of the 360 degree video. You will not need a virtual reality headset to watch it.

Cairns Aquarium

We are excited to be working in partnership with the Cairns Aquarium to highlight the importance of marine biosecurity to visitors through an innovative display.

Our exhibit includes 3D-printed models of norther Australis five most serious aquatic pests —four mussels and a crab—and is accompanied by a video showing their destructive impact on marine environments.

Through this commitment we are reaching out to the expected 700,000 annual visitors to build community awareness of invasive marine pests which could harm northern Australia.

This community engagement project has been funded under the Agricultural Competitiveness White Paper to help improve biosecurity surveillance and analysis.

Cairns Aquarium - video transcript DOCX [108 KB, 3 pages]​

While you’re here, take a look at the Frontline Song – Northern Biosecurity’s community song