Category Archives: Environment

Point Lookout Gorge Walk reopens after restoration


The popular Point Lookout Gorge Walk on North Stradbroke Island (Minjerribah) has fully reopened to visitors ahead of the busy Christmas holiday period.

Redland City Mayor Karen Williams said restoration work was now complete on a 25 metre section of the boardwalk which was damaged earlier this year following heavy rain.

“Minjerribah is one of Queensland’s most beautiful naturally wonderful attractions and the Gorge Walk has always been a ‘must do’ for visitors to the island,” she said.

“Unfortunately the walk had to be closed earlier this year to ensure the safety of the public after heavy rain washed away some of the footings.

“Now I am pleased to announce that residents and visitors are once again able to complete the full 1.2 kilometre circuit uninterrupted.

“The walk offers multiple vantage points to view local flora and fauna against the stunning backdrop of the headlands and Pacific Ocean.

“The reopening of the entire Gorge Walk will be very welcome news to residents and businesses on Minjerribah, especially with the influx of visitors expected for the upcoming summer holidays.”

The Point Lookout Gorge Walk has fully reopened following repairs to a damaged section.

Division 2 Councillor Peter Mitchell said reconstruction of the damaged section of the walk involved the installation of seven new footings into the underlying rock.

“This was a difficult area in which to undertake works and, at the same time, protect its beautiful surrounds,” he said.

“The contractors worked off the existing decking to bore down 2.8 metres into rock to ensure the stability of the footings.

“They were then harnessed from the walk to add pile caps, using concrete pumped all the way from the main carpark.

“Care was taken at all stages of the restoration to ensure minimal damage to vegetation and the surrounding gorge.

“I am very excited that the boardwalk has reopened so residents and visitors can once again walk the circuit and experience the natural beauty of Minjerribah.”

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Redlands Coast holding steady on environmental health


The water quality in Moreton Bay is excellent and an expansion of seagrass meadows in the bay signifies a healthier ecosystem, according to the 2021 Healthy Land and Water Report Card.

The 2021 Healthy Land and Water Report Card found that water quality in Southern Moreton Bay remained excellent with a rating of B+.

The annual report into the environmental condition of South East Queensland waterways showed that the catchment waterways of Redlands Coast have remained in “fair condition”, consistent with findings in last year’s report.

Redland City Mayor Karen Williams said the consistent Catchment Environmental Condition score of C+ and a Waterway Benefit Rating of 3 stars (out of 5) were positive signs that work being done in the city was continuing to be effective.

Cr Williams said the report, prepared by Healthy Land and Water, showed there had been a slight improvement in the environmental condition of Southern Moreton Bay with a score of B+; with Central Moreton Bay also improving, up to an A from last year’s A-; while Eastern Moreton Bay maintained its A rating and Western Moreton Bay stayed on an A-.

“The report found the water quality in all four sectors of Moreton Bay remained excellent, with an improvement in all indicators in several areas,” she said.

“One of the encouraging findings is the continuing spread of seagrass meadows in various areas of Moreton Bay.

“Expanding seagrass habitat signifies a healthier ecosystem. They are home to dugongs and provide protection for a rich biodiversity of marine life.”

Cr Williams said the report showed Redlands Coast residents highly valued their local waterways and were actively using them.

Kayaking in Tingalpa Creek near Birkdale Community Precinct.

“The report showed residents placed a high value on their local waterways for recreation, with more than half of those surveyed saying they used them for recreational activities at least monthly.”

Cr Williams said encouraging and maintaining the community’s connection with their local creeks and the Bay was important.

“To keep Redlands Coast naturally wonderful for generations to come we all need to continue working together to improve the health of our waterways,” she said.

 

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IndigiScapes Centre maintenance closure extended


Redlands IndigiScapes Centre is currently closed for scheduled maintenance. Due to rain, the planned closure has extended to Friday 26 November.

IndigiScapes is now expected to reopen on Saturday 27 November. 

The following facilities are currently closed:

  • the Discovery Centre,
  • café,
  • native botanic garden,
  • playground and
  • walking tracks.

The native nursery will remain open.

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IndigiScapes Eco Markets have a sustainable festive focus


Redlands Coast residents dreaming of a sustainable Christmas will find plenty of inspiration at the IndigiScapes Eco Markets on Saturday 4 December 2021.

Redland City Mayor Karen Williams said the event would be held in the centre’s native botanic gardens and include live music, family-friendly activities, fresh produce, upcycled fashion and market stalls offering sustainable products.

“The IndigiScapes Eco Markets were launched this year and have been successful in fostering an appreciation of our natural environment and engaging with the community about sustainable lifestyle choices,” she said.

“The December event will be the last of four eco markets to be held this year and will have a festive focus on sustainable gifting and decorating leading into Christmas and the New Year.

“The markets offer the perfect opportunity to find unique gifts for family and friends while also supporting small local businesses.

“You can start the morning with breakfast at the IndigiCafe while enjoying a sustainable fashion parade and op shop styling presentation.

“Then wander through the markets and visit the suitcase rummage and rack sale where you might find the perfect outfit for Christmas.

“Make sure you say hi to Council’s community education adviser Ranger Stacey who will be very visible on the day, both on the main stage and throughout the markets.”

Division 7 Councillor Rowanne McKenzie said the Eco Markets would offer activities and entertainment for visitors of all ages from 8am to midday.

“There will be three areas set up for entertainment with musicians, singers, belly dancers and a demonstration of eco-friendly Christmas decorating ideas,” Cr McKenzie said.

“There is also an extensive list of stallholders selling everything from fresh produce, living picture frames and natural cleaning and skin care products to jewellery, pottery, arts and craft, and recycled timber homewares and gifts.

“Children are also catered for with outdoor nature play, eco craft, and native flora and fauna face painting.

“Patrons will be spoilt for food choices, with fresh local cuisine with a bush tucker twist available at IndigiCafe and stalls offering French pastries, donuts, potato twisters and coffee.

“The Native Nursery will also be open from 9am to midday for advice on native plants and sales.

“There really is no better way to spend a Saturday morning than exploring local markets in the natural environment and surrounds of IndigiScapes.”

The markets will operate under a State Government-approved COVID Management Plan, with digital check-in, social distancing, good hygiene and sanitising measures encouraged by use of signage throughout the site.

For more information, visit indigiscapes.redland.qld.gov.au, phone 3824 8611 or email indigiscapes@redland.qld.gov.au

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Redlands Coast celebrates 20,000 green waste bin milestone


A green milestone has been reached with 20,000 green waste bins now in use across Redlands Coast.

Redland City Mayor Karen Williams presented local resident Michelle Sullivan with her new bin, the city’s 20,000th, and thanked her for joining the growing green bin brigade.

Redland City Mayor Karen Williams presents Michelle Sullivan, left, with a thankyou hamper from IndigiScapes and her green waste bin, the 20,000th now in use in Redlands Coast.

“People like Michelle are really making a difference because the contents of green bins is turned into new enriching organic products, such as soils, soil enhancers and mulch,” Cr Williams said.

“It helps weed out unnecessary waste going into landfill.

“Currently, about a third of the material put into kerbside general waste bins could be diverted to household green waste bins. So every new green waste bin in service is a step in the right direction towards a zero waste future.”

Cr Williams said approximately 6,300 tonnes (or 6.3 million kgs) of green waste was collected from the kerbside collection service last financial year (2020/2021) from mainland houses across Redlands Coast.

To thank the community for an amazing effort, 50 Redlands Coast residents who had a green waste bin were randomly selected to win an IndigiScapes voucher worth $50 each. The winners were announced during National Recycling Week and have been contacted about their prize.

Green waste bins can be ordered online from Council’s website or by calling 3829 8999.

 What you can put in your green bin:

  • Garden prunings
  • Grass clippings (do not bag if using a green waste bin)
  • Shrubs
  • Weeds and flowers
  • Leaves and loose bark
  • Sawdust
  • Small branches or soft wood (no larger than 75cm in length or 10cm in diameter)

To find out what happens to your green waste, go to Council’s website.

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Council taking action on coastal erosion at Amity Point


Redland City Council is taking action to manage erosion along the Amity Point coastline on North Stradbroke Island (Minjerribah).

Mayor Karen Williams said the works were being undertaken in accordance with Council’s Implementation Plan for the Amity Point Shoreline Erosion Management Plan (SEMP).

“Council allocated $550,000 this financial year towards recommended actions in the Implementation Plan to help manage and respond to current and future erosion issues,” she said.

“This includes a university-led coastal research project and an application for preliminary approval from the State Government for recognition of all of the rock wall that runs along the coastline behind public land and private properties at Amity Point.

“The university-led project is into its second phase, with the team looking into the causes of flow slides (or ‘sinkholes’) at Amity Point and analysing their link with the Rainbow Channel that flows between the northern end of North Stradbroke Island and the southern end of Moreton Island (Moorgumpin).”

Cr Williams said the process to obtain preliminary approval of the rock wall (also known as a flow slide barrier) began earlier this year.

“Council contractors are now preparing to undertake on-ground surveys of the rock wall this month to collect data on marine plants, take measurements and monitor the structure’s condition,” she said.

“This work is a big step forward in ensuring Council land and assets and the Amity Point community remain protected against coastal hazards.

“Obtaining preliminary approval of the rock wall, which has been recognised as an effective measure against coastal hazards, will help landowners secure the development permits they need to maintain sections of the rock wall protecting their properties.”

Division 2 Councillor Peter Mitchell said Council had also commenced the planning phase for a separate foreshore project in Amity Point’s southern section.

“Council allocated funding in this year’s budget towards the design and approvals phase for a ‘buried’ seawall to be constructed on the foreshore near Minjerribah Campground at the township as recommended in the Amity Pont SEMP,” Cr Mitchell said.

“Following construction, which is planned for a future year, the seawall will be concealed with sand to ensure access to the foreshore and beach aesthetics are maintained.

“While I have been advised this seawall will be constructed slightly differently to the more common exposed seawall, it takes into consideration the recreational and environmental values of Amity Point and will further assist in protecting the foreshore from coastal erosion.

“On behalf of Council, I’d like to thank the community for their input as Council works towards delivering foreshore projects to help keep public land and assets safe from coastal hazards.”

The Amity Point SEMP Implementation Plan, which was adopted in January this year, outlines works along three distinct sections or ‘reaches’ of the coastline.

It also outlines the obligations of foreshore property owners in the central reach who are responsible for funding and maintaining sections of the rock wall that protect their land.

For more information on the Amity Point SEMP and Implementation Plan, visit Council’s Your Say web page.

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Council acts to lighten its carbon footprint


Redland City Council is taking major steps to reduce its carbon footprint.

Redland City Mayor Karen Williams said a solar energy system installed at the Cleveland Aquatic Centre during its recent upgrade would soon be playing its part.

“The rooftop installation of 262 solar panels at the aquatic centre was part of approximately $1.3 million in upgrades which also included pool tile repairs and pool painting, switchboard and centre electrical upgrades, new non-slip concourse treatment, decking, shade sails, landscaping, fencing, signage, centre painting and new 50-metre pool heating,” Cr Williams said.

“The solar panels at the Cleveland facility are expected to generate 159,005 kWh per year which, to put it in perspective, is enough to power more than 25 average households per year.

“The power generated by the panels will be used to power the entire centre and are expected to deliver a $22,000 per year saving on electricity for this facility.”

Cr Williams said the solar energy would reduce Council’s Greenhouse emissions by 130,384 kg CO2 per year.

“This is equivalent to the emissions you would save by taking 45 small cars off Australian roads for the year,” she said.

“Redlands Coast is filled with natural beauty and initiatives such as this help our natural environment and play our part as the state and country work towards reducing carbon emissions overall.”

Cr Williams said Council was also working to reduce its carbon footprint on our city’s roads.

“We all know that cars and roads are some of our most visible carbon polluters and Council is tackling this on two fronts,” she said.

“As our fleet vehicles come up for replacement we are swapping them out with hybrid vehicles – we’ve already ordered 14.

“These vehicles are expected to save $5,600 in fuel costs and reduce Council’s greenhouse emissions by 8,400 kgCO2 per year which is the equivalent of 18 return flights from Brisbane to Sydney.

“Plans to trial fully electric Council vehicles are also now at an advanced stage.”

Cr Williams said Council also has an active road upgrade program where profiling material – the waste by-product collected when roads are resealed – was used in place of gravel in new or repaired roads.

“Not only is it a great form of recycling, it has cost savings and offers a high quality structural road surface with less dust,” she said.

Cr Williams said Council’s commitment to reducing its carbon emissions was formalised in the 2021-2026 Key Initiatives of its corporate plan, which was adopted in December last year.

“To explore and implement opportunities to proactively reduce Council’s carbon footprint is a key natural environment initiative that we are committed to under the Our Future Redlands – A Corporate Plan to 2026 and Beyond,” Cr Williams said.

“It is an ongoing commitment that not only has immediate benefits within our city, but it is one of the important ways we are helping to repair and improve our world for generations to come.”

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EcoMarines sponsorship helps deliver key Council messages


Redland City Council is celebrating National Recycling Week (8-14 November 2021) by announcing a partnership to highlight the importance of recycling for our marine environment.

Council has engaged in a pilot sponsorship with Tangalooma EcoMarines, a not-for-profit organisation which provides programs to educate young people on the impacts of everyday activities on local catchments and river systems that feed into marine environments, especially Moreton Bay.

Redland City Mayor Karen Williams said Council was excited by this opportunity to partner with EcoMarines and local school students in a combined effort to enhance Redlands Coast’s naturally wonderful environmental assets.

“Redlands Coast has such natural beauty, and the EcoMarines program aligns with a number of key objectives and initiatives outlined in Council’s Corporate Plan,” she said.

“This includes maintaining and enhancing our natural assets, actively encouraging the recycling of waste, supporting the transition to a circular economy for waste, and working with the community to provide education opportunities to support environmental understanding.”

Mayor Karen Williams with (from left) Victoria Point State School students Shayla, Rachael and Piper who are involved in the EcoMarines program.

Cr Williams said the EcoMarines program also aligned with the suite of environmental education programs Council offers to early childhood and school groups, including free sustainability resources through The Get Grubby Program.

“Through this trial sponsorship, Council will work with EcoMarines to include some of our key environmental messages into their primary school programs across Redlands Coast in 2022,” she said.

“This will include developing activities around positive litter behaviour, waste minimisation and behavioural change, and waterway health and connectivity.

“We will also work together to review and improve data collection in the areas of litter prevention and action, waste reduction and recycling, and gardening and composting.”

EcoMarines General Manager Penny Limbach said the organisation welcomed the opportunity to work with Redland City Council.

“Five Redlands Coast primary schools are already involved in the EcoMarines program this year and, with Council’s support, we look forward to expanding our reach into more local schools in 2022,” she said.

“Council’s sponsorship ensures our programs are sustainable as we continue to foster future environmental leaders and positive behaviour change in the community.

“Our programs encourage students to identify and address environmental challenges impacting their local community in fun and creative ways.

“For example, students at Macleay Island State School picked up litter and created an artwork piece, to educate their school community on the impacts of marine debris.”

The achievements of all participating schools were celebrated at an end-of-year event in Brisbane on 8 November 2021, the first day of National Recycling Week.

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Council highlights recycling during National Recycling Week


National Recycling Week, from 8 to 14 November, offers a great chance to get creative with a number of workshops and activities on offer across Redlands Coast.

Redland City Mayor Karen Williams said recycling was more than just what goes out for kerbside collection, it also is a mindset around keeping items in use, and reuse, for as long as possible.

“Whether that’s sharing or repairing, or recycling materials or repurposing products, it all goes towards reducing waste to landfill,” Cr Williams said.

“Council lifts around 1.6 million yellow-lid recycling bins every year across 62,000 households, picking up more than 10,000 tonnes or 10 million kilograms of recycling as part of a fortnightly collection service.

“But while the amount of household waste being recycled is fantastic, there unfortunately has been an increase in the contamination rate in recycling bins. In 2015/16 it was around 6.9 per cent but rose to 12.24 per cent in the 2020/21 financial year.

“So I remind you that there are just five types of materials that can go in your kerbside recycling bin – paper, cardboard, glass jars and bottles, aluminium and steel cans, and firm plastic containers and bottles, most of which will come from your kitchen, bathroom or laundry.

“If you want to double check what can and can’t be recycled, have a look at Council’s comprehensive online guide: A-Z of waste recycling or you can pick up a Recycling Guide from one of our customer service centres.

“Throughout the week, the Cleveland Lighthouse will be lit up in yellow as a reminder about recycling and using your yellow-lid bins.”

Cr Williams said National Recycling Week was a great opportunity for the community to stop and think about its recycling habits and make sure they were being done correctly.

“Council also has some fantastic workshops during the Week that can help the younger members of our community to embrace supporting a zero waste to landfill future,” she said.

“Council’s Library and Waste teams are joining forces to create a recycling themed pop-up library event on Friday morning, 12 November in Thornlands Community Park off Cleveland Redland Bay Road. Bookings are required.

“There will be a library Story Time session for little ones, with interactive recycling activities. Our very own Ranger Stacey will be there to show how to sort your recyclables as well as sharing her ideas for reusing and upcycling items.

“And one of Council’s recycling trucks will drop by to give a demonstration on how kerbside recycling works.

“So I urge you to bring the family along to these National Recycling Week events and get creative with your recycling.”

Upcycle your week with these great events:

9 November, DIY macrame jar holder, Capalaba Library, 10am-11am

Join the beginner macramé session and enjoy re-using resources in thoughtful and creative ways. Use simple knotting and weaving techniques to create your own hand-made jar holder – giving your old jars a new life. Bookings essential

10 November, upcycled seedling trays, Cleveland Library, 9.30am-10.30am

Enjoy giving old items a second chance in this environmental workshop by making seedling trays from upcycled materials. Also learn how reusing food waste can revitalise your garden, and discover easy ways to grow amazing new vegetables from scraps. Bookings essential

11 November, plantable seed gift tags, Victoria Point Library, 10am-noon

Use recycled materials to give a gift that continues to grow by making reusable seed gift tags in this environmentally friendly drop-in workshop. No booking required. More details

 12 November, pop-up library, Thornlands Community Park, 9.30am-10.30am

Join the Libraries team and special guest Ranger Stacey (pictured) to celebrate reading, literacy and recycling at the pop-up library in the park. Ages 0-5. Bookings essential

 13-14 November, garage sale trail, Redlands Coast

Sell or shop at local garage sales as a way of diverting valuable resources from landfill. Garage Sale Trail offers tips, support and promotional materials for successful and COVID-safe sale days either online or in the suburbs. More details

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Council takes proactive approach to bushfire season


Redland City Council’s proactive approach to identifying and reducing bushfire risks has been welcomed by residents visited by officers from its Bushfire Hazard Reduction Team.

Redland City Mayor and Local Disaster Management Group (LDMG) Chair Councillor Karen Williams said Council was working in partnership with Queensland Fire Emergency Services (QFES) and the Rural Fire Service (RFS) to carry out audits across the city.

“Officers have visited individual properties to help identify overgrown vegetation and a build-up of fuel load that can increase fire hazard risk. They also provided residents with practical advice and direction on reducing risks.”

As well as the audits, Council is conducting a bushfire awareness campaign over the next few months funded under state and federal government grants. Council will collaborate with the QFES to deliver a number of information sessions as well as installing 10 permanent signs in high-risk bushfire areas reminding people to know the risk, prepare a survival plan and report any bushfire or arson to 000.

Deputy Mayor and Deputy Chair of the LDMG Cr Julie Talty (Division 6) said long-time Mount Cotton residents John and Lois Hughes had recently taken part in Council’s Fire Risk Management Program.

“The Hughes have lived on their rural property for some 50 years,” Cr Talty said.

“A Council officer from the Bushfire Hazard Reduction Team visited them to chat about being prepared for the upcoming fire season and an inspection was carried out on their property to look at ways of reducing the risk of it being affected by bushfires.”

Mr Hughes said they were pleased with the quick response by the team.

“They really got the ball rolling,” he said.

Mr Hughes said he had built up detailed knowledge over the years of surrounding properties and landscapes, and about local conditions that affect the risk of bushfires.

And while they have never had a bushfire on their property, Mr Hughes, who maintains several fire hoses on his land, agreed it was important not to let complacency creep in.

“It wasn’t that long before the inspection by the officer that we went down to a local (community bushfire information) meeting and that was a really good night. We learnt quite a bit there as well,” he said.

“When we had the inspection at our place the officer asked us what our plan was in an emergency. Well, we had a plan about what we would take and which way we’d go in the car depending on where the fire was coming from. But then he asked us where we would go and stay.

“That got me thinking, and that night I came up with a plan for that part of our plan!”

Mr Hughes said issues around long grass near his property had been addressed by Council during the audit.

“I encourage all residents to arrange a visit by the Bushfire Hazard Reduction Team,” Cr Talty said.

Cr Williams also encouraged the Redlands Coast community to take advantage of the “incredibly important” information sessions on offer.

“They provide targeted advice and information to property owners in identified high-risk areas as well as offering bushfire-preparedness information across the entire region,” she said.

Bushfire awareness information nights will be held at the following times and locations:

  • 4 November, IndigiScapes, Capalaba, 6.30-8.30pm
  • 11 November, Sirromet Winery, Mt Cotton, 6.30-8.30pm

Council will also host an information stall at the IndigiScapes Eco Market (4 December, 8am-noon).

Registration for the information nights is via redland.qld.gov.au

Council also has a free opt-in emergency alert messaging service. Go to: disaster.redland.qld.gov.au

To arrange a visit by the Bushfire Hazard Reduction Team, email rcc@redland.qld.gov.au or call 3829 8999.

 

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