Byron Shire Council’s recently adopted Brunswick Estuary Management Plan (BEMP) final report is now available on the council’s website and as a hard copy.

Byron Shire Council’s Coastal and Estuary Officer Ben Fitzgibbon said the plan lists the estuary’s unique features, objectives and future management options.

Council adopted the BEMP at the end of 2008. Key issues addressed include the improvement of water quality, estuary ecological health and biodiversity, conservation of Aboriginal and heritage sites, sustainable tourism, development control and future land management.

“Council is thankful and acknowledges all members of the community who were involved with the development of the plan,” Mr Fitzgibbon said.

“The Brunswick Estuary Management Committee volunteered countless hours towards the plan’s development and finalisation and were instrumental in ensuring this key natural asset is better managed and rehabilitated into the future.

“The plan has been structured to provide a list of strategic measures that can be implemented across the management areas in the Lower Marshalls Creek, Lower Brunswick River, and Lower Simpsons Creek sub-catchments.

“A total of 64 management strategies were identified and include recommendations on the incorporation of buffer zones, land management strategies, development control, and estuary bank rehabilitation and enhancement.”

The plan will cost $4.8 million to implement and the council is now eligible for funding under the State Government’s Estuary Management Program.

“Byron Shire Council was recently successful in obtaining a $100,000 grant from the Environmental Trust Restoration and Rehabilitation Program,” Mr Fitzgibbon said.

“The grant will be used to protect, restore and rehabilitate a degraded length of estuary bank at Simpsons Creek just downstream of the Brunswick Heads Bowling Club.”

Copies of the adopted Brunswick Estuary Management Plan can be downloaded for free from the council’s website, viewed at Shire libraries or purchased as a hard copy or CD from Byron Shire’s office in Mullumbimby.

Byron Shire Council website:  www.byron.nsw.gov.au/environment/coastal/