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The Resilient Rivers Initiative (RRI) is a collaborative effort between local and state government, water utilities and key non-government organisations to improve the health and resilience of South East Queensland's catchments, rivers and Moreton Bay. The Resilient Rivers Initiate vision is "By 2045, the catchments of South East Queensland will support a resilient, productive, liveable and growing region".
Each of the RRI stakeholders contributes funds towards the Catchment Investment Program. The Resilient Rivers Taskforce are then responsible for administering the Catchment Investment Program funds towards priority on-ground works identified in Catchment Action Plans. A rolling program of works has been established and as funds become available, projects are prioritised for delivery.
In 2015, Lockyer Valley Regional Council, in partnership with multiple stakeholders and the local community prepared the Lockyer Catchment Action Plan (LCAP) 2015-2018, one of the first Catchment Action Plans (CAPs) delivered under the Council of Mayors South East Queensland Resilient Rivers Initiative. The LCAP is not just an environmental plan, it's a plan for the community. It recognises the interrelationships between our environment, our people and our economy. Its goal is to achieve the right balance between the three, so that we can continue sustainably producing food in a healthy environment. One of its primary focuses is to address the very high risk of sediment movement from the Lockyer catchment which could threaten Brisbane's water supply and possibly reduce the agricultural productivity of the region. The LCAP outlines a number of on ground actions which aim to address these risks.
In 2017, Lockyer Valley Regional Council were allocated Catchment Investment Program funding from the Resilient Rivers Taskforce for two major projects identified in the LCAP.
Strategic Revegetation options for Lockyer Creek
Improving Community Resilience in the Tenthill Catchment
Following the 2013 flood event, numerous scientific experts studied the Lockyer Creek and provided information on the creeks' current state and future management.
One of the scientific management recommendations was to revegetate parts of the Lockyer Creek around Gatton to minimise risks during major flood events such as:
erosion and sediment movement downstream,
creek location changes, and
damage to valuable assets and infrastructure
Lockyer Valley Regional Council aims to revegetate parts of the Lockyer Creek during a pilot project called Keeping the Lockyer in the Lockyer – revegetating the creek for erosion control.
The science behind the project >
The 2013 flood event severely impacted the Upper Tenthill area. The economic impact on farmers in the area was high. Large areas of alluvial flats used for irrigated horticulture were washed away. Road crossings were destroyed and access to the valley was substantially constrained for months after the event, resulting in significant financial and social impacts on businesses and residents.
Road crossings have since been reinstated via NDRRA funding with some armouring in place. However, the creek also avulsed to take a new course which has created a straightened reach exceeding 2km in length. This has the potential to cause significant damage to creek banks and assets located downstream in future flood events.
Council will work with landholders within the Tenthill Creek Catchment to improve community resilience by:
Investigating alternative access routes for the community to use during and after climatic events such as floods which destroy current access infrastructure;
Identifying energy dissipation measures within the catchment, to reduce the stream power and hence reduce damage to assets and erosion;
Working with landholders to identify actions which will improve the financial viability and environmental quality of their properties ;
Restoring native vegetation cover on hill slopes by targeting weed removal, improving pasture and revegetating with naturally occurring native species to:
improve economic viability of grazing,
slow rainwater runoff,
reduce sediment movement,
increase groundwater intake and
improve native habitat.
Stabilising creek banks and alluvial areas at strategic sites to:
protect infrastructure and mitigate future impacts on key road assets in the Woodbine to Mt Sylvia section;
Test the potential benefits of transferring sediment accumulation from the Tenthill Weir to upstream sites:
To repair damaged alluvial flats, as well as enhance groundwater recharge and sediment trapping at the weir itself.
The Improving Community Resilience in the Tenthill Catchment project will be delivered in three phases. Phase 1 (between Woodbine and Mt Sylvia) has been designed as a demonstration project to test approaches. Phases 2 and 3 will occur in other sections of the sub-catchment (sites to be determined).