Prosperity from protection, six projects announced for Noosa

The small projects that received $20,000 or less from the Noosa Biosphere Reserve Big Ideas 2017 grants round have gained final approval to proceed.

The aspirational work includes addressing the disease attacking the iconic Pandanus trees, creating an indigenous cultural heritage learning trail, a master plan for the hinterland trail network and planning for Noosa achieving zero carbon emissions by 2026 and World Heritage listing by 2032.

Two new Noosa trails were awarded funding to understand and improve cultural and sustainable land practices.

Tourism Noosa will deliver a master plan for a Noosa Trail Network – a network of eight hinterland trails passing through diverse areas within the biosphere reserve.

The trail would include national park, state forest, private property, council parks and road reserves and aims to protect environmental assets and support hinterland communities.

The Marine Ecology Education Indigenous Corporation were awarded funding to develop a cultural learning trail to promote a better understanding of Noosa’s indigenous heritage and culturally significant landscapes and iconic species.

The knowledge bank would support the management of natural assets, particularly the Noosa River, Lakes and creeks.

Tourism Noosa in partnership with the Noosa Parks Association will conduct an initial scoping study to achieve World Heritage recognition for Noosa by 2032. The work hinges upon Noosa’s accumulative achievement, of a wise balance between nature conservation and sustainable development over a 70-year period.

Zero Emissions Noosa were also awarded to develop a roadmap to achieving 100 percent renewable energy for the Noosa Shire by 2026.

The Pandanus Preservation Project aims to halt the widespread cases of Pandanus dieback caused by leaf hopper Lamella Australia, using proven biological control methods.

Sunshine Beach State School will also create a bush tucker garden and outdoor learning classroom.

Noosa Biosphere Reserve Foundation deputy chair, Clare Cartwright said these aspirational projects were what Noosa needed to prepare for a prosperous future.

“These projects include vital feasibility work needed to deeply understand what’s required to better protect and manage our land and biodiversity.

“The grants committee were delighted with the level of collaboration and research backing the start of some exciting projects for Noosa.”

More than 50 applications were submitted and Ms Cartwright says the response was unprecedented.

“We put a call out for Noosa’s next big ideas and the community responded,” said Ms Cartwright.

“The Foundation was inundated with applications for this grants round and we are completely inspired.

“In total, fifty-four applicants sought funding in excess of $2.3 million and there is a total funding pool of $330,000, the Foundation’s biggest investment yet.”

Larger projects over $20,000 in value are in the final stages of assessment and expect to be announced in early 2018.

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