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Key Assets Protected

Key Assets Protected by the Regional Sustainability Program

The focus of the Regional Sustainability program is the management, protection and improvement of the identified key regional assets of:

  • Surface Water;
  • Native Flora and Fauna species;
  • Waterways;
  • Wetlands;
  • Land for primary production;
  • The Mallee community values and capacity for Natural Resource Management;
  • Soils;
  • Ecosystem services.

In the context of this program the Victorian Mallee region is dominated by the Murray River, its anabranches, distributor channels and associated wetland systems. The riverine bioregions of the Murray represent important and distinct floodplain ecosystems, with many having international significance, such as the Hattah-Kulkyne Lakes, which are listed under the International Convention of Wetlands. These areas provide important and diverse habitat for a variety of aquatic and riparian species. This includes extensive river Red Gum and Black Box floodplain communities and a range of rare or threatened flora and flora species protected by state and national legislation such as the Carpet Python, Regent Parrot, Growling Grass Frog, Murray Cod and Murray Hardyhead.  The waterways, wetlands and floodplains of the region also support significant cultural landscapes and heritage sites dating back thousands of years.

The region's major waterway, the Murray River, also supports the region's major agricultural and horticultural industries. There are around 1,000 km2 of permanent plantings of irrigated horticulture along the Murray River corridor from Nyah in the south-east, to the South Australian border in the north-west.  Typically about 500 gigalitres (GL) of water per annum is used to produce fruit, nuts and vegetables worth more than $0.9 billion at the farm gate.  The region hosts all nine major Australian wineries including the largest winery in the southern hemisphere. The region produces about 70% of the total Australian export wine production and also boasts the largest planted area of almonds in the southern hemisphere.

The Regional Sustainability program focuses on achieving the best possible balance between sustainable productive farming practices and protection and enhancement of the region’s ecological assets.

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