River

Australian government and Victorian CMAs helping communities and the environment recover from Black Saturday bushfires

Monday 15 June, 2009
After the devastation of the Black Saturday bushfires, landholders, public land managers and the environment are getting assistance from a government program that provides grants for environmental projects.

After the devastation of the Black Saturday bushfires, landholders, public land managers and the environment are getting assistance from a government program that provides grants for environmental projects.

The Rudd Government's Caring for our Country Bushfire Recovery Program is providing almost $5 million to the Goulburn Broken Catchment Management Authority and $2.5 million to the Port Phillip and Westernport Catchment Management Authority to assist communities, local governments, state agencies, non-government organisations and landholders to undertake environmental recovery activities.

The two Catchment Management Authorities are protecting important environmental assets in the bushfire-affected areas of their regions by managing grants programs for public and private land managers. The grants cover activities such as:

  • Fencing to protect high priority waterways, wetlands, and native vegetation,
  • Pest animal control to protect native wildlife and habitat,
  • Containment and control of highly threatening environmental weeds, 
  • Identifying and protecting exposed Indigenous sites.

Expert staff will assist landholders to prepare fire recovery plans that consider fencing, weed management, soil stabilisation and replanting. Grants are then available to support the most important and valuable works.

Not only will the funding focus on recovering fire affected waterways, wetlands and native flora and fauna, it will also strengthen and assist community networks.

Bill O'Kane, Chief Executive Officer of GBCMA said, "It is essential to rebuild community networks and this program will provide skills and knowledge to drive the recovery of natural assets, coordinate community input and response to fire recovery management programs, including volunteer management and develop and maintain enhanced communications through the fire affected region."

David Buntine, Chief Executive Officer of PPWCMA said "The Bushfire Recovery Program is bringing together the CMAs, local governments, Landcare networks, volunteers, Melbourne Water, the Department of Primary Industries, Parks Victoria and the Department of Sustainability and Environment to support public and private land managers with the recovery of their land and our environment"

Each CMA will be making direct contact with the affected communities, but landholders can also contact the CMA offices to register interest. More detail on eligible activities and priorities will soon be available.

General enquiries

GBCMA: Ph: 5736 0100 or www.gbcma.vic.gov.au
PPWCMA: Ph 8781 7900 or www.ppwcma.vic.gov.au