Environment Minister Recognises Growers for Positive Change

 

This article was originally published in the Cassowary Coast Independent on 1 February 2018.

 

Queensland’s Environment and Great Barrier Reef Minister, Leeanne Enoch visited a cane farm last week to sign a commitment to sugarcane growers and recognise them for their efforts to improve the quality of the water running into the Great Barrier Reef.

Ms Enoch was at CANEGROWERS Innisfail Chairman, Joseph Marano’s Mourilyan farm to see and hear first-hand the collaborative efforts of the sugarcane industry through two major projects underway in the Wet Tropics – Cane Changer and the Wet Tropics Major Integrated Project. 

Ms Enoch said the two projects highlighted the positive partnerships made between government, industry and farmers and demonstrated the commitment and stewardship of farmers in the region.

Minister Enoch on farm with Joseph Marano and other representatives of the sugarcane industry.

Minister Enoch on farm with Joseph Marano and other representatives of the sugarcane industry.

John Pickering with Queensland Minister for the Environment and Great Barrier Reef, Leeanne Enoch, and CANEGROWERS Innisfail Chair, Joseph Marano

John Pickering with Queensland Minister for the Environment and Great Barrier Reef, Leeanne Enoch, and CANEGROWERS Innisfail Chair, Joseph Marano

"Wet Tropics MIP and Cane Changer are breaking new ground in how they're helping farmers manage the sustainability of their enterprises and industry and achieve accelerated water quality improvements for the Great Barrier Reef," Ms Enoch said.

Mr Marano has been involved in both projects and says the reason behind their success is their positive approach to working with farmers.

"They've listened to cane growers and recognise the positive changes we're making on our farms, so we've been able to work collaboratively towards better outcomes for all," he said.

As part of her visit Ms Enoch signed a Cane Changer Commitment, joining over 185 sugarcane growers, and the previous Queensland Minister for Environment Steven Miles, who have signed Commitments as part of their involvement in Project Cane Changer.

Ms Enoch committed to:

  • acknowledge the ongoing efforts of Queensland cane growers for improving their farming practices, especially as they relate to the health of the Great BarrIer Reef;

  • recognise the important role that cane growers play for the State of Queensand; and·

  • work collaboratively with the sugar industry for a better future for the industry and the environment

Cane Changer project leader, John Pickering said the recognition was a sign of the support sugarcane growers have from the Queensland Government.

“Growers have been making significant improvements over the years to their farming practices to improve the water quality running out into the Great Barrier Reef,” he said. “It means a lot for growers to have that support and acknowledgement of the changes they have made.

“We hope to continue that into the future as we work with growers and share more stories of change from the sugarcane fields.”

Project Cane Changer is a CANEGROWERS initiative, supported by the Queensland Government, that looks to improve the positive recognition of sugarcane growers and help drive further innovation into the future. To find out more head to canechanger.com or contact your local CANEGROWERS office.