STRONG REPRESENTATION FROM THE WET TROPICS FOR REEF CHAMPION AWARDS
An Innisfail extension officer, a Tablelands grazier couple and a trailblazing sugar industry partnership are amongst the finalists in this year’s Reef Champion Awards.
The Awards, run by the Reef Alliance with support from the Australian and Queensland governments, recognise the outstanding achievements of individuals and organisations working to improve the quality of water entering the iconic Great Barrier Reef.
Terrain NRM CEO Carole Sweatman said the awards reflect the commitment of local famers and industry to improving farming practices for the benefit of business, community and the Great Barrier Reef.
“There are some really impressive achievements coming out of the Wet Tropics region. The Reef Champion Awards are a chance to celebrate farmers and other groups who are working hard to improve the health of the reef.
“All of the finalists from the Wet Tropics have been proactively involved in large Australian or Queensland Government reef water quality projects that are working with farmers to change practices, and we are starting to see some significant results.
“The Australian Government’s Reef Trust III program has resulted in nearly 300 Wet Tropics cane farmers making at least one practice change, leading to an estimated 10% reduction of dissolved inorganic nitrogen running off cane farms to the reef.”
“Another 39 cane farmers involved in the Australian Government’s Reef Trust IV Repeated Tenders program have collectively reduced their nitrogen by 515,226 kg so far and graziers in the Upper Herbert catchment have helped reduce the amount of fine sediment running off into the river catchment by over 2000 tonnes,” Ms Sweatman said.
“These are just some of the many projects going on around our region.”
Winners will be announced on Tuesday 26 November. Wet Tropics finalists are:
Prince of Wales Environmental Leadership – Reef Sustainability Award
- Joseph Marano
- Lenny Parisi
Reef Nutrient Champion Award
- V Rossi and Sons
Reef Sediment Champion Award
- Kate and Peter Waddell
Reef Community Champion Award
Reef Youth Champion Award