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The Hawkesbury-Nepean River Recovery Program comprised seven projects and has improved river health in the Hawkesbury-Nepean River System in western Sydney by making more water available for the environment and reducing nutrient inputs. This major program’s achievements were formally recognised when it was named winner of two awards – winner of the government category at the 2012 savewater! awards® and winner of the program innovation category at the 2012 Australian Water Association NSW Branch Awards. A comprehensive final report will be published in 2013.
The NSW Government has commenced a detailed review of the flood management arrangements for the Hawkesbury-Nepean valley in western Sydney. In 2012 extensive flooding across south eastern Australia, including the Hawkesbury-Nepean valley, saw Warragamba Dam spill for the first time in 14 years. This has raised awareness about the impacts of flooding. In response, the Hawkesbury-Nepean Valley Flood Management Review will consider flood planning, flood mitigation and flood response.
In May 2009 the Australian Government announced up to $77.4 million of funding for the Hawkesbury-Nepean River Recovery Program (HNRRP), and I commenced work as Program Manager in June 2009. I concluded the HNRRP at the end of 2011, with the program exceeding its intended outcomes and finishing on time and under budget. The HNRRP has improved river health by making more water available for environmental ﬂows and reducing nutrient inputs to the river system.
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After just over two years of very intensive activity, the Hawkesbury-Nepean River Recovery Program (HNRRP) is coming to an end, having successfully delivered its intended outcomes on time and under budget. The ﬁnal edition of HNRRP e-news reﬂects on some of the major achievements from the seven HNRRP projects and celebrates the great work that has been done to improve the health of the Hawkesbury-Nepean catchment. The Hawkesbury-Nepean river system frames the western edge of the Sydney Basin and is one of New South Wales’ most important natural assets.
The last edition of HNRRP e-news discussed how the Hawkesbury-Nepean River Recovery Program is meeting one of its key objectives – the prevention of an estimated 48.2 tonnes of nutrients (nitrogen and phosphorus) entering the Hawkesbury-Nepean river system each year. In the June 2011 edition of HNRRP e-news we look at our other key objective – securing 7.24 gigalitres (billion litres) per year for additional environmental ﬂows in the Hawkesbury-Nepean river system. You can also read about the HNRRP projects and how they are progressing as the program nears completion.
The CCS seminar: The Social Life of Pesticides: the Future of Urban Agriculture and Biodiversity in the Hawkesbury-Nepean River addresses the ‘social life’ of pesticides in the Hawkesbury region at Sydney’s western fringe, where land use is dominated by small-scale horticulture. The seminar will report on a cross-disciplinary effort, involving researchers working in toxicology, environmental science, social science, design and applied sustainability research, to come to grips with the state of knowledge of the condition of the Hawkesbury-Nepean River and the social causes of its chemicalisation. All interested parties are invited to join in discussing possible avenues for reform such that the ecological resilience of the Sydney basin can be enhanced and the contribution of peri-urban farming communities to our way of life can be appropriately recognised and supported.
“Source to Sea” is an ABC Landline story about balancing urban sprawl with food production in some of the nation’s most fertile farming areas. Much of the debate in the Sydney basin focuses on the demand for new residential developments. But if agriculture, fishing and horticulture are to survive on the fringe of Australia’s biggest city, the health of the Hawkesbury-Nepean river catchment will be of equal importance.
The Hawkesbury Nepean River Recovery Program (HNRRP) aims to help improve the health of the river system by reducing the amount of nutrients entering the river system and making more water available for environmental ﬂows. The March 2011 issue of HNRRP e-news explores one of these important objectives, looking at how the HNRRP is working to prevent an estimated 48.2 tonnes of nutrients entering the river system each year and discussing how this will beneﬁt the river. You can also read about the start of works for the Hawkesbury City Council South Windsor Efﬂuent Reuse Scheme and some interesting insights into other HNRRP projects.
Comprising seven projects, the Hawkesbury Nepean River Recovery Program (HNRRP) aims to improve river health by making more water available for environmental flows and reducing nutrient inputs to the river system. The seven projects have come a long way since commencing last year. You can read about their progress in the HNRRP e-news December 2010.
The NSW Government has announced the start of new environmental flows for the Hawkesbury-Nepean River following the completion of a $39 million upgrade to dams and weirs across the system. Read the rest of this entry »
© Bruce Boyes 2008-2013
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