THE Greens have today called on the state government to walk the talk on the health of the Yarra Birrarung by committing the funding that would see the ambitious Yarra River Strategic Plan materialise.
This funding will also deliver river clean up projects, river restoration projects, citizen science, community education and will support the vital work of 100 groups along the river. This funding would also cover tributary river systems including Merri.
It will also support Wurundjeri Woi-wurrung rangers in repairing cultural heritage and Country.
Ellen Sandell and Gabrielle de Vietri today called on the government to commit to:
- $40 million over the forward estimates to begin delivering the Yarra River Strategic Plan (Burndap Birrarung burndap umarkoo) 2022–32, including action towards the goal of making the Yarra Birrarung swimmable
- $12 million over the forward estimates for environmental organisations along the Yarra Birrarung, to protect and restore the river, including $1.6 million for the Yarra Riverkeeper
- A review of the EPA’s Yarra Watch Program and its efficacy as pollution regulator of the Yarra Birrarung, with a view to strengthening the EPA’s power to prosecute road and facility waste runoff, prevent future pollution, and compel polluters to pay for remedies of pollution events
- Ending native forest logging to protect the Yarra Birrarung river catchments and stop logging erosion into creeks and rivers and to protect Melbourne’s future water supply
- A moratorium on any new water licences across the state and develop a plan to return more environmental and cultural water to ensure healthy rivers.