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Nimmie-Caira: a giant win for nature, the local economy and Indigenous re-connection to country

A consortium led by The Nature Conservancy is honoured to have been chosen as the successful proponent for the future stewardship of Nimmie-Caira – 85,000 hectares of important, internationally significant Murrumbidgee floodplain in southern NSW. This represents a once-in-a-generation opportunity to create a new, sustainably managed and financed conservation property for the benefit of people and nature.

“We’re thrilled that our vision to support the area’s outstanding biodiversity and Aboriginal cultural values while demonstrating exemplary agricultural production, education and scientific research, is shared by the NSW government,” said Rich Gilmore, Country Director for The Nature Conservancy in Australia, speaking on behalf of the consortium. The other members of the consortium are the Nari Nari Tribal Council, the Murray Darling Wetlands Working Group and the Centre for Ecosystem Science at the University of NSW.

The future management of the property will focus on three main areas of equal importance*:

  • Environmental protection – Proceeds of the commercial activities will be reinvested into environmental works on Nimmie-Caira. Important natural habitats on the property including extensive wetlands of Lignum, River Red Gum forests, lakes and floodplains will be enhanced and protected. This includes habitats for threatened animals and plants like the Australasian Bittern, Australian Painted-snipe, Southern Bell Frog and Mossgiel Daisy.
  • Indigenous engagement and participation – Nari Nari Tribal Council will play a critical role in the management of the property, providing outstanding opportunities for Indigenous employment, improved health, education and reconnection to country.
  • Sustainable development – A diversified range of commercial activities that will boost the local economy and provide ongoing employment in the region around Hay and Balranald, NSW. These activities will include sustainable, low impact grazing and tourism as well as other potential activities like carbon farming on parts of the property previously used for agriculture.

The Nature Conservancy-led consortium is delighted to be able to implement its innovative plan for the future management of Nimmie-Caira, the largest remaining area of wetlands in the Murrumbidgee Valley. This represents a significant project in efforts to restore one of the more important wetlands in the Murray-Darling Basin.

“We’re very keen to commence management of Nimmie-Caira so that the multiple benefits for people and nature in the area can be realised,” concluded Gilmore.

* See this fact sheet for further details.

All media enquiries to: Tony Jupp, Associate Director of Communications, TNC Australia, tjupp@tnc.org