May 7, 2010

Rudd Government helps revitalise Cooks River

Rudd Government helps revitalise Cooks River

The Hon Anthony Albanese MP

The Minister for Infrastructure, Transport,

Regional Development and Local Government

Leader of the House

Member for Grayndler

May 7 2010

The next step in the rehabilitation of the Cooks River has begun with the start of work on the River Bank Naturalisation Project around Cup & Saucer Creek in Canterbury.

Federal Member for Grayndler Anthony Albanese today joined NSW Water Minister Phillip Costa, Canterbury Mayor Robert Furolo and Federal Member for Watson Tony Burke to turn the first sod on the project.

“This project is co-funded as part of a $2 million commitment that Labor made before the last election to clean up and help revitalise the Cooks River,” said Mr Albanese.

This project will involve the construction of native wetlands and the diversion of water from Cup and Saucer Creek into the wetlands before it feeds into the river.

The wetlands will involve a number deep pools constructed and planted with very dense native vegetation. The depth of the pools will slow the speed at which the water flows, allowing for sediments to settle on the bottom and be removed. Then the plants and the bacteria that grow on them will eat and remove pollutants from the water.

After this process, another pipe will allow the clean water to slowly drain back into the river.

The project also allows for the redevelopment of some of the river foreshore to a more natural look with vegetation and native animals, and walking paths for walkers.

This is the largest component of the Cooks River projects designed to clean up the river by removing pollutants and rubbish from the water, and by restoring river banks and wetlands to a more natural look, by planting native vegetation and gradually removing some sections of the concrete barriers placed along the river bed in the 1940s that have begun to deteriorate.

“For too long the Cooks River was a dumping ground for industrial and residential waste,” said Mr Albanese.

“I am proud that the Rudd Government’s funding is facilitating local community action to clean up this important urban river that is such an important environmental feature in the Inner West.”

Anthony and NSW Water Minister Phillip Costa at the start of work on the River Bank Naturalisation Project near Cup & Saucer Creek.