Bushfire clean-up works are underway at Eden Local Aboriginal Land Council as part of an additional $95 million funding from the NSW Government to public land managers for bushfire recovery waste management and recycling.
The Aboriginal Lands Clean-Up program is one of five programs being delivered by the NSW Environment Protection Authority (EPA) to support public land managers across the state recovering from the ‘black summer’ bushfires of 2019-20.
Following extensive on-ground assessment and consultation with the Local Aboriginal Land Council by the EPA and Public Works Advisory, clean-up work is well underway in Eden in south-east NSW.
Indigenous civil construction company based at Albion Park Rail, R and C Civil Group, has led important bushfire remediation works across Eden Local Aboriginal Land Council lands.
Works totalling $450,000 include the management and recycling of green waste, particularly hazardous burnt trees, unsafe trees preventing access and the removal and replacement of burnt fencing.
Works will also include improving road access, perimeter fencing and installation of gates to deter unauthorised access and prevent illegal dumping.
EPA Engagement, Education and Programs Executive Director Liesbet Spanjaard said the Eden works were an important part of the NSW Government’s $20 million Aboriginal Lands Clean-Up program.
“I have visited the land at Eden and seen how these works will protect the environment. The funding will remove waste, deter illegal dumping, and manage dangerous trees, some of which are stopping people safely accessing some areas across the site,” Ms Spanjaard said.
“The Eden community is benefiting through employment and economic opportunities with up to four team members assisting R and C Civil in the clean-up works,” Ms Spanjaard added.
Eden Local Aboriginal Land Council CEO Mark Bateman said the project showed what can be done with collaboration and cooperation at all levels from within Government, the Aboriginal land owners, Aboriginal Supply Nation service delivery (R and C Civil) and local Aboriginal employment and on-site training.
“This clean-up is delivering significant outcomes for both Aboriginal people as well as the Bega Valley Shire. The identification and removal of hazardous burnt trees is of critical importance for our community and the replacement of burnt fencing will assist in managing our lands,” Mr Bateman added.
Project Officer for Eden Local Aboriginal Land Council Tyrone Maher said he was very happy to see two local people already employed in the clean-up and environmental rehabilitation works, with a further two positions becoming available to complete the work.
“This clean-up work under the NSW Government’s Bushfire Recovery Programs is really important to our community. We’ve worked closely with the EPA and R and C Civil Group on the project,” Mr Maher said.
The Aboriginal Lands Clean-Up Program is funded under the joint Commonwealth-State Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements. This program is one of five waste management and recycling bushfire recovery programs designed for public land managers across bushfire dumping, green waste, council landfill and burnt fence recycling.
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