The State Government has allocated $1.25million to improve the environmental health of the Vasse Wonnerup waterways and help protect the environmental values of Geographe Bay.
Works recommended by the Vasse Wonnerup Water Quality Improvement Plan will commence immediately.
Activities will include on-ground works to significantly reduce nutrient flow into the waterways flowing into the Vasse Wonnerup wetlands and will help protect the Geographe Bay seagrass meadows from impacts of high nutrient levels.
Water Minister Graham Jacobs said the health of the internationally recognised Vasse Wonnerup wetlands was a priority for the Government.
“The values of these waterways are significant and iconic and their health is integral to the region’s water resources, lifestyle and livelihood,” Dr Jacobs said.
“High nutrient loads flowing into these systems from surrounding land use has been identified as a major threat to their stability.
“The implementation of the water quality improvement plan will go some way to rectifying nutrient impacts because if we don’t act now, these systems will continue to suffer algal blooms and associated fish kills.”
The Minister said there were key aspects of the plan that would be implemented in the next 12 months.
“These included repairing the critical vegetation on the foreshores of the waterways that are integral to their health and reducing the damaging effects of run-off from dairy sheds and feedlots into the ecosystem,” he said.
“There will also be considerable effort put into reducing nutrient entry into the waterways in the form of fertilisers and other nitrogen and phosphorus rich chemicals from urban areas.
“This includes some important and strategic retrofitting of water sensitive urban design in existing urban areas surrounding the Vasse Wonnerup.”
Dr Jacobs said the Department of Water would be the agency responsible for the overall project, however delivery of project components would predominantly be undertaken by the community-based Geographe Catchment Council (Geocatch).
“This delivery will be managed by the well established governance and partnership arrangement that exists between the Department of Water and Geocatch with industry groups and local government,” he said.
Minister's office - 9213 6900