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10th April 2024

• More than 70,000 native trees planted as part of conservation and water quality project
• Trees planted will be new habitat for koalas and black cockatoos
• Over the past decade, Seqwater has invested over $7 million into its catchment partnership program in the Lake Baroon catchment.

A major landcare and water quality project has seen more than 70,000 native trees planted on the shores of Lake Baroon.

Seqwater and its longstanding catchment partner Lake Baroon Catchment Care Group, reached the milestone after three years of planning and planting to rehabilitate the ‘Bunya Block’, a 125-hectare former beef property adjacent to the lake.

The project is minimising erosion and sediment run-off into Lake Baroon, also known as Baroon Pocket Dam, and is an example of Seqwater’s investment and collaborative community approach to protecting source water quality.

The planted trees, including species koalas and glossy black cockatoos like, are currently up to one metre tall and growing vigorously, providing water catchment benefits as well as supporting native habitat corridors.

Seqwater and community group, the Lake Baroon Catchment Care Group have worked together for many years delivering on-the-ground landcare projects and education programs for one of the Sunshine Coast’s most important water supplies.

Over the past decade, Seqwater has invested over $7 million into its catchment partnership program in the Lake Baroon catchment.

A total of 158,000 trees have been planted across the catchment, which spans 7,400 hectares across the Blackall Ranges.

Catchment projects, including tree planting, weed control, erosion repair, livestock fencing and on-farm landcare improvements, help stabilise soil and minimise sedimentation and agricultural run-off into the dam, which in turn reduces the need and cost of excessive water treatment.

These projects are made possible through the ongoing support of local landholders and farming communities.

Raw water from the dam is treated at the nearby Landers Shute Water Treatment Plant to produce clean drinking water meeting the stringent Australian Drinking Water Quality Guidelines.

Quotes attributable to Queensland Water Minister the Honourable Glenn Butcher MP
“This fantastic project is already delivering environmental and water quality benefits to one of South-East Queensland’s largest water supply dams.

“I’m pleased to see our publicly-owned bulk water provider prioritising water quality alongside environmental conservation.

“Under Labor, we invest in our water corporations so they can deliver partnerships like this tree planting project. These are the sorts of projects that would be the first in line for LNP cuts.

Quotes attributable to Member for Nicklin Robert Skelton MP
“Its so important we project the natural environment and this tree-planting project is a fantastic win-win for both the environment and protecting our water sources.

“We have so many Koalas and Black Cockatoos in our local community – I’m pleased to see Seqwater, in partnership with the Lake Baroon Catchment Care Group, creating more vegetation for these and other species.

Quote attributable to Seqwater Executive General Manager Operations, Fiore Zulli:
“Water treatment starts at our catchments and our partnership with the Lake Baroon Catchment Care Group has gone from strength-to-strength thanks to the ongoing support of the group, local landholders, the community, and the passionate contractors involved with planting and other source protection projects,” Mr Zulli said.

“Like most of South East Queensland’s drinking water catchments, this catchment includes farmland, rural properties, townships, and other land Seqwater does not own or manage, which is why we work in partnership with others to protect water quality.”

Quote attributable to Lake Baroon Catchment Care Group President, Peter Stevens:
“Seqwater and the Lake Baroon Catchment Care Group have been working together for over 20 years and share a commitment to sustainable catchment management, with many of our projects already delivering catchment and water quality benefits,” Mr Stevens said.

“For the Bunya Block, we’ve been nurturing trees planted just over two years ago and have seen this native tree corridor grow significantly in this time, assisting in the stabilization of multiple unstable hillslopes.”

Further information:
Located between Maleny and Montville, Baroon Pocket Dam is connected to the SEQ Water Grid and supplies water to approximately 75 per cent of the Sunshine Coast.

Over the past decade, Seqwater and the Lake Baroon Catchment Care Group, together with the support of local farmers, have delivered:
• 49 kilometres of fencing to minimise stock access to waterways and riparian zones, together with offstream storage points for stock
• 236 hectares of weed control work
• 158,00 trees planted
• 48 hectares of landslide management.

In recognition of the shared commitment to sustainable catchment management, Seqwater entered a 10-year agreement with Baroon Catchment Care Group in 2021 allowing for long-term planning and delivery of on-ground projects to protect water quality.

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