Two community-led projects in Condobolin have received funding under the first round of the Australian Government’s Murray–Darling Healthy Rivers Program.
S and S Beattie secured $39,017 for exclusion fencing to protect the Lachlan River and Beattie Enterprises Pty Ltd were granted $17,660 for stock exclusion fencing on the Lachlan River.
Federal Member for Parkes Mark Coulton and Minister for Resources and Water Keith Pitt announced nine successful projects on 28 July. Other towns to obtain funding include A and R Orchard – Toongi ($29,806.18 for the Protection and regeneration of Hyandra Creek), Lower Namoi Cotton Growers Association Incoporated ($8,800 for restocking the Namoi River with Golden Perch and Murray Cod), NSW Government schools – Warrumbungle ($55,000 for a School and community approach to improving the Castlereagh River’s ecosystem), OzFish Unlimited Limited ($41,635 for native revegetation along the Macquarie River), A Duncan ($39,600 for stock exclusion and riparian weed management on the Namoi River), Department of Education – Dubbo ($22,000 for sustainable fishing and aquaculture, and Connective Indigenous Corporation – Dubbo ($26,290 for Riverbank rehabilitation to protect threatened species).
Federal Member for Parkes Mark Coulton said the grants would enhance the environment of communities across western New South Wales and the Murray–Darling Basin as a whole.
“These nine grants, totalling almost $280,000, will help our communities and farmers to improve the health of their local rivers and wetlands,” he explained.
“In addition to being fantastic for the environment, these projects will support small businesses across the Parkes electorate and create real jobs – all of the grant recipients have a strong commitment to buying locally.
“One project in Dubbo will get local schoolkids involved in hands-on sustainable fishing workshops. They will learn about threatened native fish species like the Murray and Trout Cod, and threats to their populations. These students will have the skills and knowledge to be future stewards for our native fish.
“Near Narrabri, local farmers will fence off riparian zones to protect plants, prevent erosion and improve water quality. The cattle will be able to drink from separate watering points in their paddocks – improving cattle health as well as the environment.”
Minister for Resources and Water, Keith Pitt, said grants worth over $3 million would flow to communities across the Basin to undertake environmental projects.
“The grants will be a boost for communities and businesses from Goondiwindi to Strathalbyn, helping them to recover from the impacts of drought and COVID–19,” Minister Pitt stated.
“This is just the first round of grants awarded under this program. Communities will again be able to apply in a second grants round opening soon.
“This program is a key part of the Australian Government’s Murray–Darling Communities Investment Package, which is putting communities at the heart of the Basin Plan.”