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On land actions to improve water quality in our oceans

North Coast Local Land Services is leading a two-year $1.65 million environmental program to improve marine water quality through riverbank repair and vegetation restoration.

Vegetation forms part of healthy estuaries, coastlines and waterways that support a variety of unique and abundant marine life and safeguard many social, cultural and economic benefits we enjoy. Land use within a catchment and management of vegetation will impact the health of estuaries, coastlines and waterways.

Across New South Wales, water pollution is recognised as the number one threat to valuable marine areas. Riverbank vegetation reduces the loss of sediments and nutrients from the local area and prevents them from becoming pollutants in local waterways.

Works are focused on Emigrant Creek Catchment as part of a pilot project in the Richmond River that showcases a range of on-ground work and management actions.

This collaborative NSW Government initiative funded under the Marine Estate Management Strategy aims to promote a healthy coast and sea, managed for the wellbeing of the community, now and into the future.

Ms Louise Orr, General Manager North Coast Local Land Services said, “This significant investment for the North Coast region represents a major opportunity to implement a coordinated and inclusive approach to improve water quality that will benefit riparian and aquatic environments and communities.”

With a range of stakeholders involved, including Ballina Shire Council, the project will focus on improving management on private and public land to reduce the amount of sediments and nutrients entering local waterways.

Susan Davison, Land Services Officer, said, “Industries such as Macadamia growers and Graziers have been supportive of the on-ground actions, which include revegetation, bush regeneration along waterways and improved stock management via fencing.

This project provides advice and incentives to land managers in priority areas of the Emigrant Creek catchment to undertake more sustainable management practices.

Susan added, “Several threatened vegetation communities and species occur on land managed for agriculture. Getting these land managers involved in improving riverbank management will not only have a positive impact on the health of the marine estate, but it will also, have the added benefit of improving biodiversity conservation.”

Media contact: Susan Davison, North Coast Local Land Services, 0448 181 919.

Photo caption: Project Staff, Emergent Creek Catchment Works.