Australian Government to fund management of coastal acid sulphate
The Australian Government has announced AU$1.5 million funding for the management and the mitigation of environmental impacts of coastal acid sulphate soils under the Coastal Acid Sulphate Soils Programme (CASSP).
Federal Environment Minister, Senator Robert Hill, has announced eight projects demonstrating a range of options for the management of coastal acid sulphate soils which occur along most of Australia’s coastline. Once drained or disturbed, these soils react with oxygen in the air, producing sulphuric acid, which in turn dissolves heavy metals into a highly toxic cocktail of chemicals that are carried in runoff water into creeks and estuaries.
“These projects demonstrate cutting-edge techniques available to best manage the problems posed by acid sulphate soils in coastal areas,” said Hill. Each project will be run by a consortium of stakeholders, including farmers, fishers, local and state governments, scientific and academic institutions, industry and environmental organisations, explained Hill.
“The protection of Australia’s coast is vital as it provides habitat essential for Australia’s unique biodiversity, nurseries for commercial fish species and resting habitat for migratory birds,” said Hill. “Our coastal land is also prized for agriculture and residential and tourist developments, which have led to the disturbance of acid sulphate soils. These projects will reduce the environmental, social and economic costs of such disturbances by demonstrating more appropriate on-ground management techniques.”
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