Farmers are undoubtedly doing more, working together, and often contributing their own money and time, to address local issues such as weeds and feral pests, soil condition and water management. In recent times, there have been over 16 000* first time participants in NRM, many of whom are farmers – learning and delivering projects as part of the National Landcare Program**.
The structure and arrangements for working with farmers differ across the seven NRM Regions in WA, both because of the different commodities and land use, and the regional differences in soil, water, climate and people.
Dumbleyung farmer, Harley Bairstow, has revegetated a 12ha site on his property that links with the Mount Pleasant Reserve to increase biodiversity. He believes that Landcare work needs to be generational. “You need to set a precedence so the next generations will carry it on,” he said.
“I hope this groundswell of effort by farmers for the environment is continued in the future, and we can build on current achievements. To sustain this activity we need continued government investment and greater coordination both across government, and with the independent regional NRM organisations,” said Kathleen Broderick, Executive Manager NRM WA.
The five year NLP (building on previous) has enabled:
Development of collaborations and partnerships across regions and with industry and landholder groups. Regional NRM organisations play a key role in bringing these elements together.
The information across trials is shared via a web site showing all the Ag trials in WA- www.agtrialsites.com
The WA stats in delivering on the program through the seven regions in WA– several exceeding targets by an order of magnitude.
For examples (from November 16 figures)*:
· 870 724 area of land (ha) changed to sustainable practices
· 1 396 749 area of land (ha) on which improved practices have been implemented
· 1212 number of farming entities adopting sustainable practice change
· 246 number of colonies of pest animals destroyed
· 16521 number of new participants
* ‘MERIT system’ Atlas of Living Australia https://fieldcapture.ala.org.au/merit
**NLP 2014-2018 http://www.nrm.gov.au/regional
For more information on NRM WA, community volunteering, and/or a regional spokesperson, contact:
Kathleen Broderick, Executive Manager NRM WA
M: 0427 566 865