In a bid to reduce fertiliser pollution entering the oldest New South Wales marine park, Australia’s biggest blueberry farming region has trialed an emerging innovation that was pioneered to protect Queensland’s Great Barrier Reef.
In recent years, researchers found high amounts of nitrogen from fertilisers in Coffs Coast waterways, particularly in the Hearnes Lake catchment, where most horticulture farming occurs.
Southern Cross University PhD candidate Shane White and his team estimated the catchment’s nitrogen levels were six times higher than the Australian east coast average.
- Water quality studies across the region have been above guidelines set out by the Australian and New Zealand Environment Conservation Council
- Bioreactor trials on the Coffs Coast are showing promising results and better managing fertiliser runoff into waterways and marine parks
- Researchers hope to conduct further trials
For the full ABC article go to; https://www.abc.net.au/news/2021-09-26/researchers-and-farmers-tackle-farm-run-off-on-coffs-coast/100420380
Landline focuses on blueberry farming on the Coffs Coast
Also an ABC Landline TV program yesterday (26 September) lead with a feature on some of the issues featured above. It can be viewed via ABC iView here; https://iview.abc.net.au/video/RF2004Q033S00
Key points highlighted in this TV programme. Blueberry farming on the Coffs Coast has caused;
- Highest Nitrate levels in Australia, 50 times higher than recommended.
- Nitrogenous oxide in all our waterways one of highest pollution statistics in the world comparable to China and India.
- High fertilizer run off effects of fertilizer pollution will be with us for 100 years.
- ‘Polluting Solitary Island Marine Park and local sea food in local sea and water ways’ .
Lead photo: From ABC article linked first above