Coorong and Lakes Environment Forum as milestone celebrated

Date posted: 10 June 2016

Those who worked tirelessly to bring ecological recovery to the Coorong, Lower Lakes and Murray Mouth will come together later this month for an environment forum, as part of a series of events marking the final formal phase of this critical work.

The Coorong and Lakes Environment Forum is hosted by the Department of Environment, Water and Natural Resources (DEWNR) and the department’s Program Leader, CLLMM Recovery Project, Angus MacGregor said that while there’s been significant recovery to the area, the work isn’t over.

“The forum will help the community understand how they can continue to be involved in helping to revive the local environment,” Mr MacGregor said.

A range of influential scientific experts and researchers will share the latest scientific and community monitoring and research at the free forum, which will feature a range of topics including environmental water, waterbirds, threatened fish, aquatic vegetation, water quality, macroinvertebrates, Ngarrindjeri cultural heritage and more. Attendees will have the opportunity to participate in open panel discussions with experts.

“This is a chance for the community to hear about the current state of the local environment and how the region is recovering since the millennium drought,” Mr MacGregor said.

“They’ll be able to find out which projects will continue to be undertaken in the region and what monitoring is being undertaken to assess the ecological health of the Coorong and Lower Lakes.”

DEWNR led work with the community to help restore the area through two key collaborative programs – the Coorong, Lower Lakes and Murray Mouth (CLLMM) Recovery Project and The Living Murray (TLM) program.

“The delivery of environmental water as part of the Basin Plan and its associated programs has been critical in supporting the ecology of the region, especially in light of dry conditions, providing the backbone in assisting the area to recover for the future.” Mr MacGregor said.

“Monitoring through these programs provides important information to help us plan environmental watering and to understand how the ecosystem is responding to watering events.

“The end result of this enormous effort is that the area will be more resilient to future dry conditions, help protect water quality for irrigators and the community and ensure important habitats are protected for birds, fish and wildlife in the region.”

Mr McGregor said partnerships between governments, universities, community organisations and Traditional Owners have been critical to the success of this work.

“We will be emphasising this collaboration at the event – without working together, we would not have seen the extraordinary results we have had.”

The Coorong and Lakes Environment Forum keeps the local environment in the spotlight as a follow-up to World Environment Day celebrations on June 5.

These included a special planting day to celebrate the CLLMM Recovery Project’s Vegetation Program, which recorded more than five million plantings by the end of the program’s five year lifespan.

The CLLMM Recovery Project is funded under the South Australian Government’s Murray Futures program and by the Australian Government.

The Living Murray is a joint initiative funded by the New South Wales, Victorian, South Australian, Australian Capital Territory governments and the Australian Government and coordinated by the Murray Darling Basin Authority.

Event details

When: Friday 17 June, 9.30am – 4.00pm

Where: Signal Point, Goolwa

Cost: Free. Lunch will be provided.

RSVP: Contact the Lakes Hub on 8537 0808. Places are limited.

Speakers include

  • Associate Professor David Paton – The University of Adelaide
  • Associate Professor Steve Hemming – Flinders University
  • Jo Kneebone – General Manager, Environmental Water Branch, Murray-Darling Basin Authority
  • Dr Kane Aldridge – The University of Adelaide
  • Dr Qifeng Ye – South Australian Research and Development Institute, Aquatic Sciences
  • Dr Scotte Wedderburn – The University of Adelaide.

Media Contact

Melissa Martin
melissa.martin3@sa.gov.au
(08) 8204 9105
0467 795 640