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21 Apr 2008
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Believe it or not, in this day and age, some of our creeks still suffer from very poor treatment. From the accidental spill to more regular deliberate acts, pollution winds up in our waterways to the detriment of our flora, fauna and aquatic species and also to our own recreational activities. It’s time to say enough really is enough, and this lead was taken by Martina Glenn, OHS&E Manager with BlueScope Steel Queensland Logistics. After a spate of recorded regular pollution incidents in the later months of 2006 and no culprit being found, a call was put to the Oxley Creek Catchment Association to help establish a network of likeminded businesses, community and government representatives to form CreekWATCH – a group that would play a lead role in preventing pollution of our waterways, particularly in industrial areas. From the small beginnings with BlueScope Steel, OCCA and the Brisbane City Council, the CreekWATCH program has now grown to include CSR Gyprock Fibre Cement, Queensland Rail, Environmental Protection Agency, SkillsTECH Australia, Brisbane Warehousing and Distribution, and Stoddart Metal Fabricators. There are also other interested businesses out there that are kept in the loop, like MJP Smash Repairs and CoachWorks, and local community and students from Acacia Ridge State School are also involved.

This is big business!

CreekWATCH has identified three core components to preventing pollution and will deliver programs to address each one: 1.Reporting and Training: Clarify the message of who to call in case of a spill and what to do in an event. Ensure all staff are trained and updated regularly. Promote the pollution hotline number and awareness that dumping wastes down the stormwater drain is NOT ok.

2.Education: Why are our waterways worth looking after. Who looks after them. What happens when pollution enters our waterways.

3.Creek Rehabilitation: If our waterways look like drains, then they’ll be treated like drains. Weed removal, increased bank vegetation, improved water quality and water habitat and creek corridor connections for wildlife movement and habitat.

Launched on June 5 (World Environment Day) 2007, CreekWATCH Acacia Ridge is an exciting, leading program that will change the way we view and treat our waterways in industrial areas. Stay tuned for regular updates on the program’s activities and outcomes.

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