The Mallee Catchment Management Authority has won the Environmental Protection category in the Premier's Sustainability Awards 2013 for its work in restoring the balance in the drought-riven Hattah Lakes.
The Hattah Lakes are part of the 48,000 hectare Hattah-Kulkyne National Park south of Mildura and include more than 20 wetlands. Reviving the Hattah Lakes is a project which aims to restore better health to this system of semi-permanent freshwater lakes within the Murray Darling Basin.
Sustainability Victoria CEO, Stan Krpan, congratulated the Mallee Catchment Management Authority team for their innovative work, saying it represents proactive action to protect and enhance an environmentally significant landscape that may otherwise have been lost.
"Emergency action using temporary pumps was taken in 2004 to help return water to Hattah Lakes. The learnings from this work were then applied to develop an innovative plan to install permanent pump infrastructure and associated works at Hattah Lakes in 2013 - the only feasible way to get water into the lakes in the absence of large floods," he said.
Now in their eleventh year, the Premier’s Sustainability Awards celebrate efficient use of water, resources and energy, better waste management and recycling practices, the enhancement of the environment and effective, practical community action.
Overall winner for the night, recipient of the Premier’s Recognition Award, was a project by Moonee Valley City Council and Wingate Avenue Community Centre for introducing recycling to a community housing estate.
For the first time in the awards' history, the Premier also chose Victoria Carpets as the winner of the inaugural Premier's Regional Recognition Award.
The full list of winners of the Premier's Sustainability Awards 2013 are:
- Innovative Products or Services Award - ModWood Technologies for development of Flame Shield®, a wood-plastic composite for building in bushfire areas
- Infrastructure and Buildings Award - RMIT University for their Swanston Academic Building: a progressive tertiary learning environment
- Environmental Protection Award - Mallee Catchment Management Authority's project: Restoring the balance in the drought-riven Hattah Lakes
- Education Award - Bentleigh Secondary College - a world recognised, very sustainable school
- Small and Medium Enterprises Award – Rae-Line for embedding sustainability practices in manufacturing soft trim components for trucks
- Large Business Award – Victoria Carpets for their work in energy and emissions reduction in their Bendigo plant
- Community Award - Moonee Valley City Council and Wingate Avenue Community Centre, taking recycling to public housing residents
- The Premier's Regional Recognition Award - Victoria Carpets
Photographs from the Awards dinner and more information on the winners are available at sustainabilityawards.vic.gov.au. To arrange interviews or for further media information contact Cath Newell on 0423 587 478.