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2000 News Archive

$1 Million for Towra Beach Erosion

10 November

NSW Environment Minister, Mr Bob Debus, has today announced a grant of $1 million from the NSW Environmental Trust for a major beach nourishment program for Towra Beach. Essentially, under the plan, the dune in front of Towra Lagoon which has been progressively depleted by erosion over many decades will be replaced. In recent years, long-term options for managing the erosion have been focussed primarily on the offshore breakwater but a recent report from the Healthy Rivers Commission has suggested that such structures may not be necessary, and that other options could be more appropriate.

The beach nourishment will also be a quarter of the cost of the breakwater. In the coming months an Environmental Impact Statement will be produced with the project likely also to be referred to the Federal Minister for the Environment for assessment. In the meantime a newly erected replacement sandbag wall will be completed shortly thereby providing short term storm protection to Towra Lagoon. Volunteers will also assist with replanting of stabilising vegetation (more details below)

Final Management Plan for Towra Released

10 November

The State Minister for the Environment, Mr Bob Debus has approved and released the Final Plan of Management for Towra. Amongst the more notable proposed actions are the need to incorporate Spit Island into the Nature Reserve and also the need to develop a Prospectus to be distributed to the Scientific and Research sector to encourage further scientific study of Towra.

For a full on-line (Adobe Acrobat) version of the Plan click here.

Your Chance to Help Out Towra Lagoon

1 November

As part of the focus on Towra Beach and Towra Lagoon, the Friends of Towra will be visiting the Lagoon on Saturday 9 December, 2000 to plant native vegetation to help stabilise the Lagoon precinct now that the new protective wall is nearly completion. Volunteers will be meeting at Bonna Point, Kurnell for tranport to the site by boat. For more information about how to register contact Georgina Eldershaw at NPWS on 9668 9111 or by email.

Work Underway on New Lagoon Wall

31 July

Work on a new sandbag wall at Towra Lagoon has begun in ernest. About 1300 sandbags at approximately 500kg each, will be used to construct a new wall to protect Towra Lagoon from saltwater inundation. In recent times, beach erosion had reached the point where a permanent channel had been created between Botany Bay and the lagoon. The photo below shows a number of filled sandbags ready to be placed in the new wall.

Cubs Sighted at Towra Point

21 May

Cubs Scouts and Venturers from 2nd Gymea St Catherines Own, 1st Kirrawee and 1st North Engadine Venturers Unit have visited Towra to help plant 150 trees for the Weedy Pond Project. A group of over 20 people including leaders planted the banksia tubestock and removed weeds for a number of hours last Sunday. The Cub scouts helped out with the project as part of their "World Conservation Badge" For more information on the Weedy Pond project click here For a report on Towra from one of the Venturers click here.

Funding for Great Wall of Towra - Part 2

1 May

The NSW Department of Land and Water Conservation have announced funding of over $33,000 for the provision of extra protection to Towra Lagoon. In July 1999 severe storms caused extensive damage to the existing sandbag wall which was erected by community volunteers and this new funding will help to reconstruct the wall. The funding has been allocated from the State Government's Coastal Management Program. As a result of erosion of the beach, a permanent channel now exists between Botany Bay and the once freshwater lagoon.

Stage 2 of Shorebird Plan

31 March

Funding has been extended for Stage 2 of the Botany Bay Shorebird Action Plan to the tune of $49,000 from the Federal Government's Natural Heritage Trust. The project is being directed by National Parks and Wildlife Service and you can find out more details about the project here.

Towra Gets a 'Clean Up'

20 March

Towra has benefitted greatly from Clean Up Australia Day 2000. With assistance from the Friends of Towra and community volunteers, dozens of bags of rubbish have been removed from a number of separate sites in the Reserve including the Causeway and Towra Beach. At the end of the Causeway an old shed was dismantled and a run down car removed from the site. This has improved this area substantially.

Federal Minister Visits Towra

17 February

The Federal Minister for the Environment, Senator Robert Hill has visited Towra to re-examine the major issues relevant to the Reserve. In a short tour on 11 Feb 2000, the Minister was given an overview of the importance of Towra and some the problems that need to be addressed. He was accompanied by local members, conservation groups, Friends of Towra and NPWS staff. Top of the list of issues was the need for a solution to the problem of beach erosion and the need to expand the Ramsar boundary to include Taren Point wetlands

German Student Experiences Towra

17 February

Jens Albrecht, a student from Germany is currently undertaking practical training around Towra and Botany Bay. Under the supervision of Geoff Ross and National Parks and Wildlife Service, Jens is, among other things, assisting in wader counts as part of the Botany Bay Shorebird Action Plan project. TOWRA-Net caught up with Jens recently to ask him a few questions about his experience and you can read about it here.
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