Healthy Coorong, Healthy Basin is a $70 million commitment to restore a healthy Coorong, announced by the Australian and South Australian Governments in December 2018.
Part of the South Australian Government’s overarching Project Coorong initiative, the Healthy Coorong, Healthy Basin Action Plan outlines the on-ground works, management tools, research, trials and infrastructure activities required between 2019 and 2024 to get the Coorong back on track for a healthy future.
It presents a working vision to help restore the Coorong’s health, characterised by healthy vegetation with abundant and diverse populations of waterbirds, fish and plants.
The action plan includes six projects that work together to improve the ecology, knowledge and management of the Coorong, including:
- implementing ‘no regrets’ on-ground actions to avoid further loss and support the recovery of aquatic plant and waterbird communities in the Coorong.
- undertaking scientific trials and investigations to address critical knowledge gaps relating to water quality, aquatic plant health and nutrient and food web dynamics, so as to inform decisions around longer-term management options.
- optimising and integrating water delivery and management systems that are based on better, real time monitoring data and information.
- investigating the feasibility of long-term infrastructure options to determine which have the potential to provide the greatest ecological benefit to the Coorong.
- partnering with First Peoples to apply their cultural knowledge, values and interests to inform and shape the program and provide employment opportunities to implement projects.
- partnering with communities to draw on local knowledge and experience, build capacity for involvement in project implementation and foster environmental stewardship.
The Healthy Coorong, Healthy Basin action plan was informed by the Coorong Summit Summary Report and the Goyder Expert Panel Report.
The Coorong Partnership
Incorporating the experience and knowledge of the local community and First Nations is critical to successfully restoring the health of the Coorong. As part of the broader Project Coorong initiative, a new Coorong Partnership will be established to provide local communities and groups with an unprecedented opportunity to help shape the work to be undertaken.
The Coorong Partnership will comprise a community chairperson and local members with a broad range of interests and expertise including, but not limited to, Aboriginal culture, conservation, recreation, science, agriculture, tourism, fishing and heritage.
The Coorong Partnership will provide community insight, ideas and perspectives to inform government decision making and ensure that management actions taken incorporate local knowledge and contribute to achieving community needs and aspirations.
In recognition of the unique rights and interests of First Nations, they will be an integral part of the Coorong Partnership.
The Coorong Partnership will transform the way that government partners with community in the management of the Coorong.