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The Palaszczuk Government is providing $260,000 for the Mackay Whitsunday Healthy Rivers to Reef Partnership in 2018-2019, Queensland Minister for Environment and the Great Barrier Reef Leeanne Enoch has announced.

In addition, the Australian Government is providing funding of $80,000 which will be delivered via the Queensland Government.

“This funding, which is part of the total annual $35 million for the Queensland Reef Water Quality Program, will enable the partnership to carry on its great work improving the health of local waterways in the Mackay Whitsunday region,” Ms Enoch said.

“It will also enable some new environmental challenges to be addressed. In particular, the Partnership has identified marine debris as a key focus in coming months.”

The Partnership is a collaboration involving community, Traditional Owners, industry, agriculture, tourism, science, fishers and all levels of government.

“The Partnership’s vision is for healthy rivers and the reef to contribute to a prosperous and iconic region where people visit, live, work and play,” Ms Enoch said.

Partnership Chair Di Tarte welcomed the ongoing funding support.

“This is excellent news and means we can maintain our momentum and help tackle the issues that matter most for the local communities.

“We want to reduce the run-off of pesticides, nutrients and sediment and we’ve prioritised the river basins (Plane, Pioneer, O’Connell, Proserpine and Don) where we need to take urgent action.”

Monitoring is undertaken throughout the year and these results feed into the report card which will be released early next year.

Partnership Executive Officer Charlie Morgan said engaging with all levels of government was an important part of a cohesive approach to local water quality reporting and improvement.

“Having all three tiers of Government around the Partnership table significantly increases our collaboration potential, and ongoing support means we can continue to strengthen our annual waterway health report card in terms of filling data gaps and increasing data confidence,” she said.

“We gratefully acknowledge this ongoing membership and support from all levels of government, including the Australian Government, acting through the Queensland Government.”

For more information about the Mackay Whitsunday Healthy Rivers to Reef Partnership, visit https://healthyriverstoreef.org.au/

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