A thousand new trees and plants growing along the banks of the Bremer River are just a drop in the ongoing efforts of the Life Tree Movement – but a significant boost for Ipswich’s future waterway health.
The latest Healthy Land and Water annual waterway health Report Card found no dramatic changes in grades with the Bremer catchment receiving a D+, however found sediment (or mud) the biggest threat to the health of the region’s rivers with the Bremer in particular a significant contributor of loads into Moreton Bay.
Building the resilience of waterways and reducing the amount of sediment can be achieved through actions such as managing erosion, stabilising creek channels and rehabilitating riverbank areas – all aims of council’s strategic urban waterway rehabilitation program Habitat Connections.
The Life Tree Movement community planting at Gladstone Street Reserve in Sadliers Crossing recently was through the Habitat Connections program.
Life Tree Movement member Shreemmate Narayanan said their inspiration for partnering with council was as a local response to global issues and the vision of former Indian President Dr APJ Abdul Kalam.
“When Dr Abdul Kalam passed away he had a vision he wanted this world to be pollution free and without climate change being an issue that would affect us,” she said.
“Because climate change is a big issue at the moment, we thought it high time that we did something about it, and started the tree planting.”
The group is now in its fifth year of planting trees to commemorate Dr Kalam’s birthday, but although they have succeeded in planting more than 2000 so far, have ambitions of establishing 10,000 trees within 10 years.
“It doesn’t matter what age you are, a toddler or elderly, we would love more people to come and join in. This is something we can do to give back to the earth,” Ms Narayanan said.
Sediment (or mud) in waterways reduces water clarity, contains pollutants and impacts fish populations which threaten the livelihoods of the people and industries that rely on healthy waterways.
Tree plantings along waterways are important in reducing sediment as vegetation acts as a ‘skin’ of protection, and a buffer between land and water-based ecosystems.
Habitat Connections helps improve environmental outcomes through the planting and ongoing maintenance of species that ensure long-lasting waterway improvements.
Register your interest in a tree planting event through council’s Volunteer Portal.