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Media Release
Minister for the Environment and Heritage
Senator the Hon. Ian Campbell

15 September 2004

$13.7 million boost for NSW's southern rivers


The Southern Rivers region will receive $13.7 million from the Australian Government's 3 billion Natural Heritage Trust to protect biodiversity and threatened species, improve the health of rivers and wetlands, enhance coastal protection and increase sustainable land use.

Ministers for the Environment and Heritage, Senator Ian Campbell, and Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry Minister, Warren Truss said the approval of the Southern Rivers Catchment Management Authority's (CMA) investment strategy was an important step towards improving the local environment. The Southern Rivers region takes in the NSW South Coast from Wollongong to the Victorian border and inland to Braidwood and the Monaro.

"This carefully targeted strategy will guide a $3.4 million investment to help protect biodiversity and threatened species over the next three years," Senator Campbell said.

"Works will include habitat mapping, assessment and protection and enhancement for up to 10 of the region's threatened fauna species. It will also take action to protect several threatened plant communities.

"The Southern Rivers CMA will receive up to $3.76 million to complete river water sharing plans, implement water efficiency measures and increase river and wetland protection. It will also receive $2.4 million to develop an integrated coastal plan and take practical measures to improve our coasts, coastal lakes and habitats."

Senator Campbell said the strategy also included projects that would benefit landholders.

"The CMA will spend up to $4.1 million to encourage changed land management practices in the region. Better environmental practices will lead to better economic outcomes. It's a win for the environment and a win for the people of the region," he said.

Senator Campbell congratulated the CMA on its strategy, which was developed through partnerships with the community, industry and governments.

"The Howard Government's careful economic management has enabled this significant environmental dividend for the Southern Rivers region to be paid. From our threatened species to our coastlines, from our rivers and wetlands to our agricultural lands, the Southern Rivers region will be better equipped to give our land a hand."

For information on the Natural Heritage Trust: www.lendahand.gov.au. For more information about the Southern Rivers Catchment Management Authority, visit www.southern.cma.nsw.gov.au

Attached are descriptions and maps of the program areas being funded under this package.


Three-year investments identified in the Southern Rivers CMA Investment Strategy
Program Description Year Natural Heritage Trust Funding
Biodiversity and Threatened Species Conservation Program This Program continues implementation of targeted, prioritised and integrated biodiversity and threatened species conservation initiatives in each of the major sub-regions of the Southern Rivers’ CMA region.

Works include vegetation/habitat mapping and assessment, a range of locally applicable incentive schemes, establishment of demonstration sites, recovery monitoring and provision of technical advice/extension services.
2004/05 $1,212,250
2005/06 $1,154,750
2006/07 $1,035,000
River and Wetland Protection and Restoration Program This Program recognises the role that rivers and wetlands play in our coastal landscape and community sustainability.

Activities in this Program are undertaken on a sub-regional scale.

This Program includes significant involvement of the Aboriginal community, a suite of works that target primary producer involvement (eg water efficiency, track and laneway management and riparian weed control) and maximises voluntary care group participation in a program of smaller coordinated local efforts.
2004/05 $1,406,250
2005/06 $1,253,750
2006/07 $1,100,000
Coastal Protection Program The Coastal Protection program looks at establishing a direction for future coastal sustainability, acting in the short term to address known problems and setting up a model for improved regional integration, participation and cooperation in coastal management for one third of the New South Wales coastline.

Activities will include development of an integrated coastal plan, completion of a comprehensive estuary assessment, working with land managers, including primary industry, to protect, restore and manage coastal habitats and mitigate threats to coastal lakes, working to mitigate the threat of weed to coastal biodiversity and support for acid sulfate soil management works, especially with primary producers, on affected coastal floodplains.
2004/05 $917,250
2005/06 $724,750
2006/07 $796,000
Sustainable Landuse Program This program is an integrated program that targets the development of sustainable systems for widespread landuse activities, especially primary industry, in the Southern Rivers Region.

Works include research & development, landuse assessment, implementation of a range of locally applicable incentive schemes to encourage changed land management practices, establishment of demonstration sites, and provision of technical advice/extension services.
2004/05 $1,396,250
2005/06 $1,387,750
2006/07 $1,316,000

Southern Rivers CMA

(a) Location of Biodiversity and Threatened Species Conservation Program Activities

(a) Location of Biodiversity and Threatened Species Conservation Program Activities
Commonwealth of Australia