Byron Shire Chemical Free Landcare (BSCFL) has scored recognition for Brunswick Heads beach with a regional Highly Commended award, under the category of Environment Protection, as part of the Keep Australia Beautiful NSW, Clean Beaches Connecting Our Coast Awards 2013.
The award ceremony was held on Ballina last night (December 5), as part of the North Coast and Northern Rivers Regional Awards.
Ballina mayor Cr David Wright handed the award to BSCFL coordinator Nadia de Souza Pietramale and volunteers Gerd Kulhlmann and Anna van Hoeven.
‘It is very special to be recognised for our commitment to implement and document the successful of sustainable weed management,’ Nadia said on behalf of the group.
BSCFL has being working for the past three years on 4.75 hectares of Crown land reserve at Brunswick Heads, removing Bitou from the dunes using the crowning method developed by botanist Ellen White. This approach is recognised under the Bitou Bush Abatement Plan as an efficient and successful method.
The volunteers are looking forward to completing the removal the remnant 0.5 hectare of Bitou in 2014.
‘We also will continue to lobby National Parks to give us permission to implement ecological restoration on Tyagarah Nature Reserve, adjacent to the south boundary of the Brunswick Crown land reserve,’ said Nadia.
Earlier this year, the group and its supporters fought a pitched battle with the National Parks and Wildlife Service over aerial spraying of glyphosate at Tyagarah.
‘While waiting, a group of concerned residents are holding the space by practising “Bitou yoga and meditation” in the Tyagarah Nature Reserve every week morning and one Saturday per month, with the next one scheduled for January 18, 2014.
The Byron Chemical Free Landcare’s last working bee and Christmas party will be on December, Saturday 14, from 8.30am till 12.30pm, at Brunswick Heads Crown Land Reserve site.
Anyone wishing to attend should meet at the end of South Head Road fire track gate.
‘If you come later, walk along the dog-walking beach track, look south from the fence and you will spot us doing follow-up work. Please wear boots, long-sleeve shirt and long pants, a hat, gloves and bring water,’ said Nadia.
For more information, call Nadia 0478 272 300 or go to www.byronshirechemicalfreelandcare.org.