The Government is enhancing the bush capital with an additional $10 million in the 22-23 Budget to bolster the environment and nature conservation.
More resources will be available to improve the integration of Ngunnawal knowledge into land planning and management, with a focus on restoring urban open spaces and enhancing our capacity to adapt to climate change.
The Government will continue its work toward being a greener and more resilient city with $2.95 million in funding committed over the next two years to establish more trees and plants in urban areas, and maximise our connection with nature and each other. Twenty sites across the city vital for natural habitat connectivity and climate cooling will be restored and enhanced; habitat and connectivity maps will be produced and incorporated into key decision-making tools such as the planning District Strategies; and the Canberra Nature Map platform will be enhanced to strengthen and support citizen science contributions to identifying important species and habitat.
The Government is further investing in protecting and enhancing native habitats and species as they adapt to climate change, which includes bolstering our bio security capacity to respond to new incursions of invasive plants, animals and diseases, by expanding the Invasive Species Rapid Response Ranger Team.
The Government is also increasing resources for bushfire preparedness work, including expanding fire management activities and preparing an updated Bushfire Management Plan.
In response to the unprecedented wet weather last financial year, the Government will invest more funding in track and trail maintenance at Canberra Nature Parks, with design work for a new visitor’s centre and other enhancements at Tidbinbilla Nature Reserve set to get underway too.
Quotes attributable to Chief Minister, Andrew Barr:
“Canberra is one of the world’s most liveable cities, and we are fortunate to have so much unique and diverse nature right in our backyard. We are delivering on major projects that will maintain our strong connection with nature, while protecting our environment and resilience to climate events such as bushfires and floods.
“We are introducing and expanding on initiatives today that will encourage local businesses, green spaces, and eco-tourism with opportunities for more recreation, social activities, and exercise to improve mental and physical wellbeing. These projects will grow and protect jobs and strengthen our position as a leading nature-based tourist destination.”
Quotes attributable to Minister for the Environment, Rebecca Vassarotti:
“We need to actively protect our bush capital, which sees green space and biodiversity havens accessible top residents throughout the city. We have a unique opportunity to better protect our precious landscape through more deliberatively embedding our environmental expertise as our city evolves, drawing on First Nations knowledge in land management and enhancing our connection to nature.
“It’s never been more evident that our connection to each other is important to preserve our health and wellbeing. Focusing on embedding nature in our city will help to provide more opportunities to restore social connections, enhance native wildlife habitat and give all Canberrans a sense of belonging.
“Canberrans have always had a strong connection with nature and the announcement of this round of funding for the next four years renews our commitment to a green, sustainable and inclusive Canberra.
Quotes attributable to Minister for Planning and Land Management, Mick Gentleman:
“Our parks and reserves are an important part of our bush capital and are treasured by Canberrans. This year’s budget will ensure we make these areas even better while supporting our natural environment.
“I am excited that over the next few years work will be underway on designs for upgrades to our visitor’s centre at Tidbinbilla. This will refresh the park but also help with the important conservation work that happens there.
“We’ve listened to the community’s feedback, collected through our Parks and Conservation visitor surveys, and will continue our focus on building better tracks and trails, upgrading facilities and increasing opportunities for Canberrans to learn from and connect with our natural environment.
“This year’s investments will also help bolster our bushfire preparedness and support our continuing efforts to keep Canberra safe. ”
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