Results from the October Get the Site Right inspection blitz day show that compliance rates on construction and building sites are holding steady following the significant improvements seen in the June campaign.
The results are encouraging in light of the recent rainfall surge experienced across Sydney and parts of eastern Australia and an increase in building and renovation projects since the start of COVID-19.
The year’s ending; time to look back and see what’s been achieved. Fortunately, at our Simmos Beach Reserve restoration site, Stage 2 is complete and we’re proud of the results. Primary treatment of woody weeds was completed throughout the entire length of the creek down to the Georges River. Over 7,500 plants were installed to give the bush a helping hand in its recovery. Simmos Beach Bushcare group has been instrumental in assisting contractors to manage some of the areas.
Stage 2 works at Oyster Creek Gully have now finished and, as you can see from some of the images, the site has changed significantly since the project began. During monitoring, there were no flowering privets to be spotted along the whole length of the project site. Privets are serious environmental weeds. Infestations threaten biodiversity and ecological communities.
Georges Riverkeeper, one of the longest running catchment organisations in Australia, has a new home at Sutherland Shire Council, with Council set to host the peak waterways management body for the next four years.
The hosting agreement sees Georges Riverkeeper working in close partnership with Sutherland Shire Council’s Environmental Science and Shire Planning division on key environmental projects aimed at further improving the health of local waterways including the Georges River.
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.