Wednesday 18 March 2020
By Ginninderry Project Team

Ginninderry’s innovative Conservation Trust has officially commenced work with the appointment of its inaugural Board and support staff.

The first stage being 240 hectares of conservation area along the Murrumbidgee River in west Belconnen will be protected by the new Conservation Trust, which heralds a new era for the sustainable management of conservation assets within a developing community.

The Trust will have responsibility for the environmental and conservation management of the natural and heritage features of the ACT’s 373 hectare portion of the corridor. Pending approval, the NSW portion of 217 hectares, will also be incorporated into the new Trust.

In 2019, the Ginninderry Joint Venture called for expressions of interest from community members for appointment to the governing board with the intention of appointing a skills-based board with experience across the conservation, community engagement, financial, legal, commercial and governance fields.

Ginninderry Conservation Trust CEO Jason Cummings said he was looking forward to working with the new governing board.

“This is a really exciting initiative and after many years of planning it’s great to be working with such a diverse range of board members who are genuinely invested in the work of the Trust” he said.

“To support the work of the Board, we’ve appointed Ange Calliess (pictured below) as Program Director – Conservation Corridor, to lead implementation of key projects”.

One of the earlier projects of the Trust will be to provide river access to the community. This direct contribution model sets a new precedent for greenfields development in the region, demonstrating a strong commitment to environmental sustainability.

The corridor is an important natural asset and home to protected fauna and flora, including the Pink-tailed Worm-lizard and Yellow Box Red Gum Grassy Woodlands.

In order to operate the Trust, financial contributions will be directed both from the ACT Government and the Ginninderry Joint Venture partnership to meet the recurrent funding needs for the conservation of this important area.

Ginninderry Project Director Steve Harding believes the establishment of the conservation trust is an important element in realising the project vision.

“The Trust is a great example of collaboration in planning and conservation to safeguard the natural assets that support Ginninderry as a community in a landscape” he said.

The inaugural Ginninderry Conservation Trust Board includes the following appointments:

  • Wally Bell (Ginninderry Aboriginal Advisory Group)
  • Alice Williams (Ginninderry Aboriginal Advisory Group)
  • David Cootes (Community representative)
  • Alistair Henchman (Community representative)
  • Ros Chivers (Community representative)
  • Rod Griffiths (Community representative)
  •  David Maxwell (Ginninderry JV)
  • Justin Foley (ACT Government)
  • Leesa Croke (ACT Government)
  • Jennifer Finlay (ACT Government)
  • Jasmin Jones (YVC)

The Ginninderry Conservation Trust at the first Board meeting with ACT Minister for Suburban Development, Yvette Berry MLA