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Reef Credits: new, exciting landscape in which to fund NRM

CEO NQ Dry Tropics Scott Crawford

NQ Dry Tropics operates in an ever changing funding landscape. New and exciting opportunities for sourcing investment continue to present themselves, and organisations such as ours need to not only adapt and embrace change, but also to develop and drive new opportunities.

To stay ahead of the game, we have been working in partnership with Terrain NRM and environmental markets investor, GreenCollar, to develop the Reef Credit Scheme.

This market-based initiative aims to open up new opportunities to improve the quality of water flowing to the Great Barrier Reef lagoon, while providing a financial return to farmers and graziers.

It isn’t easy getting a groundbreaking initiative such as this off the ground. It has taken nearly two years from concept to a nearly operational system, a consultation process that included 40 briefings to industry, government and other stakeholders, and design input from dozens of experts from around Australia and overseas.

I am excited by the possibilities this scheme will provide, so watch this space! In the meantime, you can go to reefcredit.org for more information.

Reef Credits is just one of a number of funding initiatives that we are progressing. I look forward to talking about some of the others in the near future.

Southern Gulf NRM merger

ANOTHER important update concerns a potential merger with Southern Gulf NRM, to the west of our region. For the past two years, the boards of both organisations have been discussing the merits of a merger, and exploring what a merged company might look like.

It is no secret that Southern Gulf NRM faces an uncertain future due to high fixed overhead costs in proportion to its project income.

A proposed merger would provide opportunities to share back office services and reduce costs through economies of scale, as well as deliver high quality natural resource management across 20 per cent of Queensland.

It would also create opportunities to capitalise on business development opportunities through what is an already well-established economic corridor.

Both boards have agreed in principle to merge; however, a final decision rests with the members of each organisation, with a decision expected towards the end of this year.

Should the proposal be accepted, a commitment would remain to continue delivering high quality services across both regions – and retain a strong local presence out west.

For further info, please read this document.

 CEO NQ Dry Tropics Dr Scott Crawford

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