Applications open for new ‘H2OK’ demonstration sites grants

Urban and rural residents are invited to undertake innovative stormwater management practices through a new grants program launched today by Senator for the ACT Zed Seselja and Minister for the Environment and Heritage Mick Gentleman.


The program forms part of the H2OK: Keeping our waterways healthy education program and aims to provide residents an opportunity to implement stormwater management improvements on their block, as well as provide examples of best practice management that others in the community can observe and learn from.


“One of the main problems with urban stormwater management is increased runoff from areas such as house roofs and driveways that picks up sediment and nutrients which are harmful to our waterways,” Senator Seselja said.


“On rural properties, if runoff is not managed it can cause soil and other nutrients to wash off blocks. 


“The new demonstration sites grants program provides residents in Canberra and the surrounding region an opportunity to implement stormwater management improvements on their block. Grants of up to $3000 for urban and $7500 for rural residential properties are available.


“In the urban setting this may include establishing rain gardens, disconnecting downpipes, installing rainwater tanks, treating the nature strip and introducing composting systems. For rural residential properties funding can also target fencing to manage grazing and preserve ground cover, erosion control, and management of water on their properties and protecting and enhancing waterways.”


Grant funding applicants will need to demonstrate their proposed work is able to reduce stormwater runoff impacts, provide best value for money and be innovative in its approach to stormwater management.


Minister Gentleman said the new grants program supported the H2OK: Keeping our waterways healthy education program and objectives to change behaviour that resulted in pollutants entering our waterways and affecting water quality.


“Learning from others is one of the best ways of achieving change in the way we manage stormwater runoff from residential sites,” Minister Gentleman said.


“The grants program will work in partnership with Open Gardens Canberra to help exhibit these best practice examples of residential stormwater management. All funding recipients will be required to open their properties for public viewing to showcase their innovative stormwater management practices.


“Eligible urban and rural residential properties need to be in the ACT or the Upper Murrumbidgee River catchment area of Queanbeyan–Palerang Regional Council, Yass Valley Council or Snowy Monaro Regional Council.


“Further information on the demonstration sites grants program, including details on how to apply, is available online at Applications close 4 pm Monday 29 May 2017,” Minister Gentleman concluded.


The H2OK: Keeping our waterways healthy stormwater education program, being rolled out across the ACT and region, is part of the $93.5 million ACT Healthy Waterways Project, which is a partnership between the Federal and ACT Governments. 


Statement ends


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