Community River Health Monitoring Program Wins NSW Urban Landcare Award
The River Health Monitoring Program was celebrated as one of “thirteen of the state’s most impressive environmental achievements” of the year by the NSW Landcare organisation.
The ceremony was held in Parkes on 6 September, 2011 as part of the NSW Landcare and Catchment Management Forum.
The Member for Dubbo, Mr Troy Grant, MP who is Parliamentary Secretary for Natural Resources presented the presented the award at the ceremony and dinner which was attended by delegates from all over New South Wales.“We are thrilled that Landcare NSW recognises the great worth of our Community River Health Monitoring Program, and that all those who attended the Awards Ceremony from across New South Wales are now aware of the great work we are doing in the Georges River catchment,” said Cr Julie Bourke, Chairperson of the GRCCC.
Since the program began in 2009 the community has contributed over 1700 volunteer hours to the program which has undertaken 168 sampling events at over 42 sites in freshwater and estuarine areas of the Georges River catchment.
Due to the success of the program, the GRCCC received $506,000 in funding from the Australian Government to continue the program for a further two years. This funding will allow more frequent sampling in the Georges River Catchment and the expansion of the program into the Cooks River Catchment.
Data collected from these sampling events is used to produce annual River Health Report Cards which interpret and present results of the data collected, and provide an overall indication of the river’s health on a sub catchment and site by site basis.
The Urban Landcare category required the delivery of a project or initiative that inspired and involved an urban population in Landcare. Projects could range from on-ground works to campaigns but had to have demonstrable natural resource management outcomes connected with the city.
The River Health Program has engaged a large number of community members and created greater awareness and understanding of environmental issues relating to the Georges River, in a highly urbanized catchment. It has engaged project partners from all levels of government, such as the Sydney Metropolitan Catchment Management Authority and the community to work together for long-term environmental management of the river.
The autumn 2011 report card will be released at the end of September and the next sampling event will take place in October. Limited places for the combined volunteer training and field sampling days. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org
For more information on the program go to www.georgesriver.org.au.
The GRCCC is an incorporated association of nine local government councils working in partnership with state and federal government agencies and community representatives to improve the health of the Georges River catchment. The GRCCC represents local government in the Georges River Catchment of NSW. Member councils include Rockdale City, Sutherland Shire, Kogarah City, Hurstville City, Bankstown City, Liverpool City, Fairfield City, Campbelltown City and Wollondilly Shire councils.