JOINT MEDIA RELEASE WITH HON BARNABY JOYCE MP, MINISTER FOR AGRICULTURE
The Australian Government has placed Landcare back at the heart of natural resource management with the announcement of reforms to the regional stream of the National Landcare Programme that will see $454 million invested in sustainable agriculture and environmental rehabilitation over four years.
The $454 million in regional stream funding will be invested through Australia’s 56 regional natural resource management organisations over the next four years.
Minister for the Environment, Greg Hunt, and Minister for Agriculture, Barnaby Joyce, announced the changes to the regional stream of the Programme which will ensure funds are invested locally to deliver real change that is targeted to the environment and the land.
Minister Hunt and Minister Joyce reconfirmed their commitment to ensuring that 20 per cent of Australian Government investment made through the regional natural resource management organisations under the National Landcare Programme’s regional stream will be directed towards local projects and activities undertaken by community groups, including Landcare.
“This means that farmers, Landcare and other community groups will have access to funding on an annual basis so that they can continue to undertake important on-ground works in their local communities,” Minister Joyce said.
“After three years of consultation with the natural resource management community, particularly Landcare groups and networks, we have created a new National Landcare Programme based on the principles of simple, local and long-term,” Minister Hunt said.
“We have created a Programme that is simple and easy to navigate so that time and investment is focussed on on-ground works. We want to work with communities to develop lasting long-term land management solutions, and the Programme will be driven by local priorities that put Landcare and community groups back at the centre of regional land management,” Minister Hunt said.
“Farmers, local Landcare and community groups know what’s best for their farms, regional landscape and their community,” Minister Joyce said.
“That’s why this Government is putting in a grass-roots process where communities will work with their regional natural resource management organisations to set priorities for their own regions.”
Minister Hunt said regional natural resource management organisations will play a crucial role in helping to achieve this and will be integral in engaging and working with their local communities, identifying and setting local priorities for environmental action and supporting sustainable agriculture in their own backyards.
“The National Landcare Programme will support local communities to develop the most effective ways to manage and protect their natural assets, to achieve long-term benefits not just locally but for our nation as a whole,” Minister Hunt said.
The Government’s total investment in complementary natural resource management programmes amounts to over $2 billion over the next four years.
For more information about the National Landcare Programme regional funding go to www.nrm.gov.au.