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Facing Island weed management

Gladstone Ports Corporation (GPC) today announced it is partnering with Gidarjil Development Corporation to undertake weed management activities on Facing Island, commencing on Monday 8 June 2020. 


GPC Acting CEO Craig Walker said the project would support the work of 10 Gidarjil rangers, who will undertake controlled burns and herbicide spraying on the island. 


“We are proud to partner with Gidarjil Development Corporation on this project, who will use traditional Indigenous land management techniques via controlled burns,” Mr Walker said.


“Facing Island is home to many native species, including nesting flatback turtles, and it important that we manage invasive pest plants to preserve these vital natural ecosystems.” 


Gidargil Development Corporation is an Indigenous-owned enterprise that aspires to empower First Nation Australians to become economically independent and provide leadership towards Australian cultural integrity. 


Managing Director Dr Kerry Blackman said through its Indigenous ranger program, Gidarjil is empowering the Traditional Owners of this region to maintain their traditional custodianship, cultural values and connections to their sea country.


“Our vision is to work with partners to protect the entire land and sea ecosystems for future generations by integrating Indigenous knowledge, western science and best practice management approaches,” he said. 


“The Gidarjil rangers are excited to be working on this project in collaboration with Gladstone Ports Corporation. 


“Traditional fire burning techniques have been used by the First Australians to manage land in a wholistic manner for over 60,000 years. 


“The rangers are passionate about the return and implementation of traditional land management practices that they will be utilising in an effort to manage weeds on Facing Island.”


Minister for Regional Development and Manufacturing and Member for Gladstone Glenn Butcher said:


“It’s good to see local traditional owners, local experts from the fire service and other agencies working together to undertake controlled burns in Gladstone,” Mr Butcher said. 


“There’s thousands of generations of tradition owner knowledge right across this country that we need to tap into when conducting them.

 

“Hazard burns are only one part of a much broader toolkit of activities aimed at protecting communities.”


Controlled burns will be carried out at three targeted weed control areas, commencing on Monday 8 June 2020 for a period of 3-5 days. 


Approximately 6-8 weeks after burning, herbicide will be spot sprayed to control any re-growth and target smaller areas. These works will take 10-12 days. 


“We apologise for any inconvenience caused by these activities and appreciated the community’s cooperation while these essential works are underway,” Mr Walker said. 


Residents on Facing Island should close windows and doors, and keep medication close by if suffering from a respiratory illness.


For more information about Gladstone Ports Corporation, visit www.gpcl.com.au.

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