|Vic Catchments meeting February 25-26
In recognition of the fatigue that occurs with online meetings we spilt our meeting over two days.
The first day of our meeting was designed as an update of our activities since November 2020 and where we are heading in 2021.
We were grateful for briefings from DELWP, significantly the Sustainable Waterway Strategy for the Central and Gippsland region of southern Victoria which will be the focus of the department for the year ahead. It focusses on challenges with availability and water quality for consumptive and environmental purposes and the decline in long-term water availability due to climate change. This will be a major policy driver for Victoria.
We also heard more about the Nature Restoration for Carbon Storage – the BushBank program. This is a significant investment program for biodiversity in Victoria. Vic Catchments will continue to engage with DELWP and Trust for Nature to further explore how CMAs can assist with this exciting program.
We reflected on our good work preparing ourselves to take advantage of funding in agriculture and it was pleasing to hear how CMAs have three of the 12 projects across Australia funded under the Australian Government's NRM Drought Resilience program. We also heard about the power of collaboration in developing a very strong partnership proposal for the Australian Government's Future Research Hub.
We also discussed CMAs' potential role in carbon offsets. There a risks and opportunities within this emerging industry and our CEOs will be working together to explore these in more detail.
Vic Catchments also received a brief on our progress towards delivering our strategic plan. Despite COVID-19 there has been a lot happening and our CEOs with the Executive Officer have been working on an action plan.