18th March, 2021

New report outlines economic, social and environmental benefits of large-scale investment in conservation and land management jobs.

Regional communities in NSW hard hit by COVID-19, would benefit from large-scale investment in practical conservation and land management work according to a new report released today.

According to ‘The Working With Nature’ report, a $500 million investment will deliver thousands of full-time jobs and $1.2 billion in long-term economic benefits.

Landcare NSW is one of more than 100 conservation, farming and land management organisations that have come together to support a plan that would provide a pathway from welfare to work for thousands of people, restoring Australia’s landscapes and supporting regional economic recovery.

Landcare NSW CEO, Dr Adrian Zammit said the report outlines the diverse economic, social and environmental benefits associated with government investment in conservation and land management. Case studies point to opportunities for further investment in hard-hit regional communities.

“Support for practical conservation and land management activities like tree planting, weed management, soil erosion control, bushfire recovery, restoration of bushland, rivers and creeks, feral animal control and restoration of coastal and marine habitats would ensure that we sustainably manage our environmental recovery while simultaneously safeguarding our economic wellbeing,” said Dr Zammit.

“Government investment in conservation and land management work provides an opportunity to provide timely and targeted support to vulnerable people in hard hit regions, including youth and unskilled workers.”

Opportunities for investment in some of the hard-hit regions of New South Wales include projects on the North Coast restoring the Richmond and Manning rivers and weed control and bushfire recovery and building capacity of community organisations in the Hunter. These projects would provide employment for 250 full-time workers.

Projects in the South Coast and Snowy Mountains regions would tackle weeds in priority landscapes, assist in reducing the long-term impacts of bushfires and strengthening community networks. This would result in employment for 382 full-time workers.