November 29, 2010

Alcoa and Parks Victoria Celebrate 10 Years in Anglesea Heath

Representatives from Alcoa and Parks Victoria celebrated 10 years of co-managing The Anglesea Heath over afternoon tea today.

This unique cooperative agreement was a first of its kind in Australia. It sees a resources company and a government agency working together to co-manage over 7000 hectares of Alcoa’s mining lease, known locally as the Anglesea Heath.
 
The agreement is formalised in The Anglesea Heath Management Plan* that provides the framework for management of the Heath and was signed by Parks Victoria and Alcoa in 2000 after extensive community consultation.
 
Parks Victoria’s Ranger in Charge East Otways, Frank Gleeson, said that giving Parks Victoria the legal authority to act on and co-manage the Anglesea Heath has enabled it to be treated consistently with the surrounding Great Otway National Park.
 
“The two organisations have worked extensively together to improve the Anglesea Heath, including improvements to signage, track rationalisation and rehabilitation, weed removal, and importantly, the presence of Parks Victoria Rangers to help educate the various user groups helps enormously.
 
All these activities make the Heath more resilient and contribute to a better user experience for local people and visitors”, Mr Gleeson said.
 
Alcoa’s Mine Manager, Mr Chris Rolland, spoke of his professional satisfaction in participating in the management of the Anglesea Heath.
 
“Getting to this position took a lot of hard work and good faith from a range of people including Alcoa, Parks Victoria and in the broader community, particularly ANGAIR.
 
The works done on Cecil Track stand out for me as a real testimony to the strength of this partnership approach to land management.
 
By working collaboratively with CCMA, DSE, Parks Victoria and Surf Coast Shire we were able to rehabilitate the tracks and river banks in this area as well creating a concrete ford over the waterway.
 
This not only improved access in to a beautiful area, but helped significantly to preserve it”, he said.
 
The Anglesea Heath Consultative Committee continues to meet and provide guidance on the management of the Anglesea Heath.
 
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* The first suggestions for a management plan for the Anglesea Heath came in 1996 after Alcoa and the then Department of Natural Resources and Environment (NRE) jointly called upon key stakeholders and environmental experts to discuss proposed additions to the National Heritage-listed area within the Anglesea Heath. Each stage in the development of the management plan involved the community, either through the consultative committee, various working parties, or a series of issue workshops 
 
The consultative committee involved in the compilation of and ongoing engagement in the Anglesea Heath Management Plan includes representatives from Parks Victoria, ANGAIR, the Surf Coast Shire, the Geelong Environment Council, staff from the School of Biology and Chemical Sciences at Deakin University Geelong and Alcoa.
 
Media contacts:
Anthea Doran – Alcoa - 0404 800 148
Jo Curkpatrick – Parks Victoria - 0427 101 222