Georges Riverkeeper's Annual General Meeting, held on 26 November 2020, marked a changing of the guards, in that we had a number of new people elected to positions on our Executive Group.
The recently released State of the Georges River 2020 report gives the health of the Georges River an overall “B-“ grade for the freshwater part of the river, and an overall “A” grade for the estuary.
However, some creeks in the middle, more populated areas of the Georges River catchment, scored poorly.
These included Bunbury Curran, Cabramatta and Prospect Creeks and most of the smaller creeks flowing directly to the estuary.
During the 2019/20 financial year, approximately 72 tonnes of rubbish was removed from the catchment. This number is down from 101 tonnes in the previous financial year. Part of this reduction can be attributed to our partner, NSW Department of Justice - Corrective Services, suspending works on days with poor air quality during the bushfire crisis. Work was then again put on hold from March in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Anecdotally, an increase in takeaway packaging as a result of the pandemic may have led to an increase of in-stream litter.
The Georges River is the focus of #SeaToSource, Conservation Volunteers Australia’s (CVA) latest project.
As part of #SeaToSource, CVA is showcasing eight rivers and urban waterways around Australia and sharing stories about their importance to the local environment and threats the rivers are facing from plastic litter.
With higher than average rainfall predicted for Sydney and surrounding regions throughout the remainder of 2020, builders and home renovators are urged to get their sites right to avoid needless pollution of local waterways.
Botany Bay is one of Australia's best known and most often studied waterways, as well as one of our most highly urbanised waterways. Georges Riverkeeper have recently published a paper in Regional Studies in Marine Science titled 'A review of intensified land use effects on the ecosystems of Botany Bay and its rivers, Georges River and Cooks River, in southern Sydney, Australia'.
Through the Research Program, Georges Riverkeeper is currently co-supervising a University of Newcastle Honours student to investigate the uptake of metals in mangroves throughout the Georges River.
Builders, developers and home renovators are more successfully implementing erosion and sediment controls on building sites to protect our local waterways, according to results from the recent Get the Site Right education and compliance campaign.