The Victorian Government has outlined its new Gippsland Lakes Environmental Strategy plan, outlining a range of strategies the Government says will protect the region’s iconic lakes.

State Minister for Regional and Rural Development, Peter Ryan, said that the strategy puts in place a framework for investment to be used by the $10 million Gippsland Lakes Environment Fund.

“The Gippsland Lakes Ministerial Advisory Committee has prepared the strategy which balances the needs of the environment, local communities and industries such as tourism and fishing,” Mr Ryan said.

“More than 200 individuals and 50 government agencies, community and special interest groups, and industry bodies have had input into the strategy.”

Minister for Environment and Climate Change Ryan Smith said the strategy outlined clear steps for maintaining the environmental significance of the lakes, improving their health and enhancing the lakes’ economic and social value.

“A total of $1.67 million will be invested in projects that build partnerships and support on-the-ground works, planning, community engagement and sustainable fishing and boating,” Mr Smith said.

“Among the new projects, $150,000 will go towards a sustainable development plan and a further $50,000 will be used to study the benefits of commercial and recreational fishing to the local economy in order to better support its long-term sustainability.

Other projects announced today include:

  • Gippsland Care Groups caring for the Gippsland Lakes ($413,000)
  • Enhancing the lower reaches of the Gippsland Lakes tributaries ($313,000 )
  • Reducing the Loads, targeting the Upper Latrobe River ($150,000)
  • Improving the Gippsland Lakes by Reducing Sedimentation through Improved Catchment Management ($150,000)
  • Gippsland Care Groups Engaging the Community ($57,400)
  • Community-based education and interpretation ($100,000)
  • Sustainable Lakes Management Centre of Excellence Feasibility Study ($80,000)
  • Investigation of Economic Value of Boating ($50,000)
  • Evaluation of models for fish stock assessment ($75,000)
  • Engaging the Gippsland Lakes Community ($80,000)