From Hilltops Council – Joanne Mackay

Written by: Joanne Mackay

Joanne Mackay

Councillor Joanne Mackay

Happy New Year. I recently joined the Boorowa Community Landcare Group (BCLG) and had the pleasure of presenting Landcare awards at the Australia Day celebrations in Boorowa.

With the current issues Boorowa is experiencing with their water, it is a reminder of how important it is to take care of our environment.

Landcare is much more than planting trees and the BCLG were happy to outline what they’re really all about.

Its initial goal, beginning 35 years ago, was to rapidly regenerate the Boorowa region with native trees to combat dieback and dryland salinity. The novel technique of using a Bodan direct seeder made this a reality. Hundreds of kilometres of trees were sown and now stand as proof of the success of reducing dryland salinity to a memory. BCLG currently provides a direct sowing service planting 60 to 100 kilometres a year.

Government funding has changed dramatically since those early days for BCLG and the arm of the Local Land Services that deals with Natural Resource Management. Reduced funding has meant the BCLG had to think creatively and have leveraged resources to provide group events with a focus on learning and experience. One of the most important workshops the BCLG conducts deals with climate and educates on the physical and mental tools required to adapt to the environment. There is great emphasis on seeking support and planning and this proved to be a lifesaver for many.

So Boorowa Community Land Care is not just about sowing trees, they have an enormous scope of events, from pasture and crop management to bird walks, native bees, fruit tree pruning, alternative fencing, Aboriginal Walk Over Country, planning, mapping, governance, involvement with the Boorowa Show, International Women’s Day, school excursions, planting and biodiversity days as well as Bridges to Boorowa with North Sydney Shire and much more.

BCLG is about supporting, educating and motivating people to understand what needs to be done environmentally and to recognise we can all contribute to looking after our environment and to go out and actively do what you can to make it better.

Thank you to BCLG for contributing to this column and I am looking forward to BCLG being a positive part of my 2024. Councillor Jo Mackay

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