Hon Mia Davies MLA

Hon Mia Davies MLA

Former Minister for Water; Sport and Recreation; Forestry

    Vasse estuary taskforce inaugural meeting

    1/12/2014 12:00 AM
     
    • Taskforce to improve co-ordination of waterway management actions
    • MOU endorsed for fish kill mitigation and response strategy
    • Signing of $200,000 GeoCatch funding agreement  
    The State Government’s Vasse Taskforce, designed to bring stakeholders together to oversee the long term management of water quality in the Vasse-Wonnerup Estuary, is up and running.
     
    Chaired by Water Minister Mia Davies, the group met for the first time in Busselton on Friday.
     
    “The meeting was positive and provided good outcomes,” Ms Davies said.
     
    “There was overwhelming agreement between taskforce members on the need for effective co-operation and co-ordination between agencies with all agreeing on the terms of reference and roles and responsibilities for water asset managers.”
     
    The taskforce witnessed the signing of the Fish Kill Mitigation and Response Strategy Memorandum of Understanding by the inter-agency Vasse Estuary Technical Working Group and officially endorsed the strategy as a part of the overall response plan.
     
    The Minister witnessed the signing of a funding agreement for $200,000 for GeoCatch to continue its work in community consultation and initiating a pilot program with the dairy industry to reduce fertiliser use.
     
    The taskforce will now move ahead with other key priorities in the development of the medium and long-term strategy to improve water quality and the local ecosystem.
     
    “We will continue our feasibility study of the Geographe catchment drainage network at a cost of about $500,000, to determine if rivers can be redirected into the wetlands,” Ms Davies said.
     
    “Easing nutrient pressure on the Toby Inlet will be helped by extending almost $5 million of infill sewerage works into Quindalup on top of the $14.5 million already being spent in Busselton.
     
    “I have asked the Department of Water and its partners continue to pursue funding to implement key recommendations of the water quality improvement plan while the taskforce is developing an extensive business case for this purpose.”
     
           Fact File
    • The Vasse Taskforce includes Geographe Catchment Council (GeoCatch); South West Catchments Council; South West Development Commission; departments of Water, Parks and Wildlife, Agriculture and Food, Planning, and Fisheries; City of Busselton; Shire of Capel; Busselton Water; and the Water Corporation
    • The inter-agency Vasse Estuary Technical Working Group is made up of the departments of Water, Parks and Wildlife, and Fisheries; the Water Corporation and the City of Busselton, and is set up to assist reducing the frequency and severity of fish kills in the system 
    Minister’s office - 6552 5500