Another $3.8 million will be spent by the Australian and South Australian Governments on a package of agricultural remediation projects that will boost local economies and support ongoing recovery in communities heavily impacted by the 2019-20 bushfires.

Federal Minister for Emergency Management and National Recovery and Resilience, Senator the Hon Bridget McKenzie said the projects are part of the $700 million Local Economic Recovery program being delivered under the jointly funded Commonwealth-State Disaster Recovery Funding Arrangements (DRFA).

“These latest projects for pest, debris and weed eradication initiatives will support South Australia’s agricultural recovery from the bushfires, helping boost agricultural production on Kangaroo Island and at Cudlee Creek,” Minister McKenzie said.

“The 2019-20 bushfires had a devastating impact on communities, especially our farmers, which is why the Australian Government is committed to funding projects through the Local Economic Recovery program that aim to meet the economic and social recovery needs of highly impacted areas to help build sustainable and resilient communities into the future.”

These four projects come on top of the 14 projects already announced for South Australia through the Local Economic Recovery program.

South Australian Minister for Primary Industries and Regional Development David Basham said funding for these four projects is in addition to the $19.8 million already committed to Kangaroo Island’s new desalination plant, the $150,000 in funding to help restore the Lobethal Bushland Park and the almost $29 million allocated to boost local economies in February this year.

“Following consultation with local councils, recovery committees, communities and other stakeholders in bushfire-affected areas across the state, we’ve selected $3.8 million of initiatives that will bring sustainable agricultural, economic and environmental outcomes to communities,” Minister Basham said.

“The clean-up of small plantation forestry on both Kangaroo Island and at Cudlee Creek, feral pig eradication and blue gum regeneration management on Kangaroo Island will provide direct economic stimulus, boost primary production and increase disaster resilience while supporting the recovery of the natural environment.”

In January 2020, the Prime Minister announced the $2 Billion National Bushfire Recovery Fund to support a whole-of-government response and recovery effort across 2019-20 bushfire affected areas of Australia.

Nationwide the Australian Government has delivered $2.5 billion of the $2.8 billion made available to support bushfire recovery, including more than $1.7 billion so far from the National Bushfire Recovery Fund.

This includes:

  • Over 27,000 grants and loans to small business and primary producers
  • Over 200,000 recovery payments and allowances to individuals
  • Increased battery-back up to mobile phone towers at 404 sites across regional and remote Australia
  • Over 3,200 payments to emergency volunteers
  • Connectivity upgrades at 111 fire service depots and evacuation centres
  • Initiatives for wildlife and habitat recovery
  • Over 4,900 properties cleared of debris (jointly funded with the states)
  • Over 400 Local Economic Recovery projects now underway (jointly funded with the states)

For more information visit: https://pir.sa.gov.au/emergency_management/bushfire_support/bushfire_recovery_program/local_economic_recovery_program/