ANNUAL REPORT 2017-2018
Clayton Cattle Yard, Mt Divide (C.Curnow)
The Rangelands NRM Coordinating Group is supported by funding from the Australian Government (through the National Landcare Programme) and the WA State Government
ÂŠ Rangelands NRM Coordinating Group, Inc. 2018
Front Cover Photo: ESRM planning on Mt Divide Station (C.Curnow) Back Cover (clockwise): TAFE student helping set up feral shoot (M.Jensen), Chris Curnow with Spinifex team (SLM), Aerial Cull Team (I.Cotton), Monitoring site setup at Emu Creek.
AUDITORS: Jeffrey Trudgian Chartered Accountant, 70A Mars Street, Carlisle WA 6101
Contents About Rangelands NRM.................................................................................................... 2 National Landcare Program in review: 2015-18................................................................ 4 Chairperson’s message...................................................................................................... 6 CEO’s report...................................................................................................................... 8 Performance overview.................................................................................................... 10 »» Bringing land managers together and assisting collaboration ............................ 11 »» Protecting threatened species and their habitat ................................................ 13 »» Reducing weeds and animal pests, and managing fire across the landscape .... 15 »» Assisting pastoralists to improve their grazing practices, reduce erosion and make the most of water in the landscape ...................................... 19 »» Supporting small groups to grow and become self-sufficient ............................ 22 Board Directors............................................................................................................... 24 Board Remuneration & Attendances .............................................................................. 29 Rangelands NRM Team.................................................................................................... 31 Finance review................................................................................................................ 33
Rangelands Annual Report 2017-2018 | 1
About Rangelands NRM Rangelands NRM Coordinating Group (Rangelands NRM) Annual Report 1 July 2017–30 June 2018. Rangelands NRM works in the outback of WA with people who manage the land. We help them look after our natural resources: plants, animals, and the environment in which they live. We bring different land managers together and enable collaboration so more improvements can be achieved on the ground. Our partners include pastoralists, ranger groups, government agencies, industry and community groups.
'In our work, we connect, coordinate and deliver...'’ Rangelands NRM helps our partners look after threatened species, reduce weeds and animal pests, and manage fire across the landscape. Rangelands NRM assists pastoralists to improve their grazing practices, reduce erosion and make the most of water in the landscape. Rangelands NRM supports small groups—like Land Conservation District Committees (LCDCs) and indigenous rangers—to grow and become self-sufficient. 2 | Rangelands Annual Report 2017-2018
The WA rangelands The rangelands or ‘outback’ of Western Australia covers 85 per cent of the state, and generally represents a region of low rainfall with arid and semi-arid climate with some tropical and sub-tropic climates in the far north. The WA rangelands stretch from Shark Bay in the west, up to the Pilbara and Kimberley in the north, across to the deserts (to the Northern Territory border in the east) and down to Norseman and the Nullarbor coast in the south.
Our approach Due to the vast size of the region, we engage with people through four sub regions: the Kimberley, the Pilbara, the Desert, and the Southern Rangelands (Murchison, Gascoyne, Goldfields and Nullarbor). In our work we connect, coordinate and deliver. »» We connect people and projects so innovative community-driven solutions can develop »» We seek ways to maximise results through coordination of effort and resources »» We work with local people and organisations to deliver on-ground results Rangelands NRM was incorporated in 2002. Since then, we have built a solid knowledge base of the WA rangelands, its people and have a good understanding of the problems and opportunities that face the region at a local level.
capacity and look after their own patch. We use a community development approach, working from the community out. We help to seed projects and organisations so they can improve management and grow something bigger.
Regional Plan In 2014, we developed a Regional Plan as a tool to identify priority areas in the rangelands of WA where land management activities can take place. Priority areas to work in have been identified. These were chosen because they have significant environmental assets, manageable threats and the willingness of a community to collaborate and be engaged, demonstrating strong leadership and having a sustainable vision for the area. These priority areas provide scope to be selective when choosing preferred projects within the sub-regions.
The rangelands of WA are huge. So, to achieve results that make an impact, we need to work on a landscape-scale and across tenures, which means connecting people and working together.
This plan has specifically been designed to be interactive and responsive– stakeholders, project partners and community members across the region have had and can continue to have input into the content. In this way, we can be confident that the work we are doing and supporting always stays relevant and meaningful to the people of the rangelands.
We also know that to achieve real change on the ground, it’s far better to help and encourage people to increase their
The Rangelands NRM Regional Plan can be accessed online at http://regionalplan. rangelandswa.com.au/
Natural resource management (NRM) is about taking care of our natural resources–our water, soil, plants and animals–through helping people who care for them–our farmers, pastoralists, landholders and communities. Rangelands Annual Report 2017-2018 | 3
National Landcare Program in review: 201 588 Indigenous peoples employed
527 farming entities engaged
555,332 ha improved mangement implemented
4,399 pest animals culled
5,837,279 ha burnt under fire management
8 major fauna surveys undertaken
6,769 volunteers participating in project activities 4 | Rangelands Annual Report 2017-2018
15-2018 99 Federal funded projects delivered
17 WA State funded projects delivered
117,157 ha treated for weeds
303 community events run
501 Indigenous people employed as PT rangers 103 Indigenous people employed as FT rangers 978 people completing formal training courses Rangelands Annual Report 2017-2018 | 5
Chairperson's Message It is again my privilege to provide the Chairs report for the 2017-18 year and what a year it has been. In last year’s report I mentioned that Rangelands NRM, along with all the NRM groups across Australia, were entering a year of uncertainty with the cessation of the Federal National Landcare Program funding in June 2018. So firstly, let me thank my fellow Directors and the dedicated and passionate Rangelands NRM staff for their efforts over the last year. In 2017, we farewelled Director Mark Batty who resigned mid-November and had served on the Rangelands NRM Board for five years. We thank him enormously for his contribution. In December, we were also disappointed to say goodbye to our CEO, Dr Gaye Mackenzie. Gaye had been with Rangelands NRM for seven years and we thank her for her dedication and contribution to Rangelands NRM and her commitment to the community development model, upon which Rangelands NRM’s approach is based. We also learned early in the financial year that all the NRM groups were facing a change to the funding model from the Commonwealth and the next tranche of funding would be based on a competitive tender process which translated into no certainty of future funding. Due to this uncertainty and the departure of our CEO, the Board asked Director Kim Eckert and I to take the opportunity to visit the region and speak to as many of our members as possible. This was to reassure our membership that despite the uncertain times, Rangelands NRM was continuing with business as usual, was held in good stead and therefore quietly confident for the future. Indeed, we received a resoundingly successful audit by the Commonwealth Government. Following the departure of our CEO, we were pleased when John Silver agreed to take up the reins as acting CEO and lead the team through the enormous effort required for the Regional Landcare Partnership tender process. The Board is indebted to John for staying until our tender was submitted, leaving shortly after the tender closed to 6 | Rangelands Annual Report 2017-2018
take up a position he had been offered and accepted in the Kimberley. John had been with Rangelands NRM for 11 years with the last seven as Operations Manager, and the Board wishes him all the best in his future endeavours. The Board also thanks our Innovation and Development Manager Quinton Clasen for acting as CEO until our new CEO commenced in May. The Board also agreed to access our equity funds to extend the contracts of our staff to provide some certainty with the project funding ceasing at the end of the financial year and to ensure we were able to maintain the team to deliver on the requirements of the last tranche of National Landcare Program funding. During the last three years, the team delivered 99 Federallyfunded projects and 17 Western Australian State Government funded projects. So, this year started with the Board further embedding strong governance and, as our five-year strategic plan concluded in June 2018, the Board also commenced strategic planning for the next period. Our focus was also on finding a new CEO and we were delighted when Debra Tarabini-East agreed to take up the challenge, initially seeing the team through the Regional Landcare Partnership Agreement process with the Federal Government and ensuring the completion and acquittal of the projects from the previous tranche of National Landcare Program funding. Given the significant uncertainty surrounding the funding situation, the Board was happy a CEO of Debra’s calibre agreed to lead the team in the next stage of our journey. At the close of the financial year, Rangelands NRM was delighted to be in confidential negotiations over funding for the Regional Landcare Program. While attending the NRM Regions Australia Chairs Forum in Darwin, hosted by Territory NRM, it was clear that not all NRM regions in Australia were initially successful, so this was a great achievement for the team. I can only write of this predicament now as time has passed, and Ministerial announcements have been made. With our equity we are
in a far better place than many other NRM regionsâ€” but make no mistakeâ€”the coming year will not be easy with significant reductions in funding and the need to look to diversifying our income if we are to be sustainable in the future. What has not changed, however, is the commitment of the Board and staff to the Western Australian rangelands. Your Board and new CEO are focussed on ensuring we build a sustainable organisation that can continue to work with you to provide biodiversity and sustainable agriculture outcomes across our vast region. In closing, a big thank you for the contributions of those that have left us this year; to our new CEO for taking on the challenge; to the Rangelands NRM team who submitted and negotiated a tender on top of their day job; to my fellow Directors for their
commitment and effort far beyond the stipend that we asked and appreciate that our members agreed to at our last Annual General Meeting; and to all our partners and supporters that have helped us achieve so much for the Western Australian rangelands through the National Landcare Program and State Government funding. On behalf of the Board, I thank you all and look forward to your ongoing support. I wish you all the very best for the year ahead.
Dr Regina Flugge Chair Rangelands NRM WA
KJ Ranger recording data in the field (KJ) Rangelands Annual Report 2017-2018 | 7
CEO's Report Since joining Rangelands NRM as the CEO in May 2018, I have been warmly welcomed to the team. I arrived at a very busy time, with the future Regional Landcare Partnership applications having Debra Tarabini-East just been submitted to the Federal CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER Government and work on the State NRM Community Stewardship Grants underway. The team have been working tirelessly on these negotiations and proposals. In this Annual Report, we present a review of the National Landcare Program that ran from 2015-18. There have been significant achievements in the rangelands of WA in terms of activities to preserve the region's biodiversity and protect the habitat of our threatened fauna and flora. Work to manage fire and control weeds and feral animals have been key. We’ve also engaged with 527 farming entities—pastoralists that are working tirelessly to run their business and at the same time ensure they are managing their land sustainably. In the majority of cases, we have exceeded the target outlined to the Federal Government for hectares of land where fire has been managed, new area treated for weeds, volunteers in project activities and training courses. We’ve also seen a great number of Indigenous people at events and our projects have resulted in employing 103 full-time and 501 part-time Indigenous rangers. 8 | Rangelands Annual Report 2017-2018
This year, Rangelands NRM was awarded with the WA ‘2017 Resilient Australia Award’ for our fire management work in the Dampier Peninsula in the Kimberley. The award was in recognition of mitigating late season wildfires using a whole of community approach. We continue to bring together individuals and community groups—including Indigenous Rangers, local and State Government Agencies and pastoral entities—to seize opportunities to share resources and coordinate an early season burn program that greatly reduces the occurrence of late season wildfire. On a Board level, I have been investigating how we are governed, reviewing the Constitution and looking at our strategic planning process. We’ve implemented a number of new committees to focus on developing plans for the future strategy. Over the financial year, there has been the loss of key people including the CEO, Operations Manager and Project Officer in the Kimberley, and Amanda D’Souza joined the team as Executive Assistant in July 2017. During my first few months I have had a one-on-one with each staff member to gain a real insight into their role, their experience and thoughts about Rangelands NRM of the future. Following this, I’ve redefined the organisations structure for 2018. Specific roles that have changed include Dave Blunt (Finance Manager) increasing responsibility as Chief Finance Officer and Company Secretary and Quinton Clasen (Innovation & Development Manager) moving across to manage the Operations Team as Program & Specialist Director.
Iâ€™ve also had the opportunity to visit regional locations in the rangelands to meet with various members and partners. This has included trips to Geraldton, Broome and Kalgoorlie. Everyone has been very welcoming and generous with their time to explain the diverse range of projects we are working on throughout the rangelands. Looking forward, Rangelands NRM are keen to branch out and seek external funding from a variety of sources and build a sustainable future. With this in mind, I have been meeting with various companies and research organisations to discuss collaboration
projects. There are challenging, but exciting times ahead as we build a new program of work throughout the rangelands, and I look forward to seeing the results that we achieve in the coming year.
Debra Tarabini-East Chief Executive Officer Rangelands NRM
Yawuru Ranger Curtis Robinson with St Marys students planting on the bush tucker trail in Broome (K.Curran)
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PMMC and Martu processing a black-flanked wallaby (G.Mackay)
10 | Rangelands Annual Report 2017-2018
Performance overview June 2018 saw the end of the Australian Government's National Landcare Program (NLP) funding that had run since 2015. A substantial proportion of Rangelands NRM's projects were supported by NLP and State NRM.
Bringing land managers together and assisting collaboration Fire on the Dampier Peninsula A Rangelands NRM project was presented with the WA 2017 Resilient Australia Award in recognition of mitigating late season wildfires through a whole of community
approach. Late Season Wildfire devastates the country, impacts biodiversity and significantly threatens life and property on an annual basis. The project brings individuals and community groupsâ€” including Indigenous Rangers, local and State Government Agencies and pastoral entitiesâ€”together to seize opportunities to reduce the occurrence of late season wildfire on the Dampier Peninsula in the Kimberley. Working together, sharing resources and identifying critical spots has resulted in a more coordinated early season burn program. Good community engagement was ensured through a series of workshops and regular discussions, which have resulted in developing a single framework to address fire mitigation and management on the Peninsula.
Meeting of Dampier Fire Group (G.Mackay)
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The Fitzroy River Is one of the largest in Northern Australia (G.Mackay)
Fitzroy collaboration The Fitzroy River in the Kimberley is one of Northern Australia’s largest and most significant free-flowing rivers, making the Fitzroy River Catchment a priority area with high environmental, socio-cultural and economic values. Rangelands NRM has been facilitating communication between stakeholders about sustainable development and conservation of the area since 2016. Several workshops were held this past year with a keenness from stakeholders to begin to build trust and open up dialogue around tricky issues in the Fitzroy. On 9 March 2018, for the first time in history, four State Government Ministers travelled to the Kimberley. Environment Minister Stephen Dawson, Regional Development and Agriculture and Food Minister Alannah MacTiernan, Water Minister Dave Kelly and Aboriginal Affairs Minister Ben Wyatt hosted a workshop with Aboriginal groups, pastoralists, 12 | Rangelands Annual Report 2017-2018
environmental organisations, government agencies and industry at Fitzroy Crossing. Rangelands NRM was invited to attend this meeting. A whole-of-Government approach that will see the expansion of the Fitzroy River National Park was announced, and the development of a management plan of the Fitzroy catchment incorporating the water allocation plan to ensure the long-term health of the river and sustainable economic development. Following the State Government’s election commitment, there has been even great interest in getting all the diverse parties together for consultation. Several conversations are currently taking place in the Fitzroy—most of these are focused on specific outputs while our approach is a longer-term outcome. Rather than overloading interested parties with multiple meetings, the Rangelands NRM working group will align with the National Environmental Science Program (NESP) Multi-Objective Planning in Northern
Australia Project. Specifically, this project is aiming to get all the groups together to discuss appropriate development in the Fitzroy. They want to demonstrate how to put participatory, multi-objective catchment planning into action, to allow stakeholders to construct and assess the outcomes of alternative development and management scenarios. Additionally, five Tradtional Owner Groups have established the Martuwarra Fitzroy Council to ensure both sustainable life and sustainable development within the Catchment. A new steering group is also forming with the Kimberley Pilbara Cattlemenâ€™s Association and Hancock Agriculture. The take-home message Rangelands NRM sees from all this activity is that the
â€˜collaborativeâ€™ and inclusive approach that we encouraged two years ago, is being recognised as the best approach for all interested parties to work together to achieve results. Everybody is now being included.
Protecting threatened species and their habitat Protecting bilbies and habitat As bilbies (Mankarr) continue to decline across Australia, the Martu women rangers are working to protect populations that occur across their
Cleaning up waterholes (Spinifex Land Mangement)
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Jigalong women ranger team with bilby burrows (KJ)
'The rest of the scientific community now has access to valuable biodiversity survey data.' country. Over the past year, the Kanyirninpa Jukurrpa (KJ) Martu ranger teams have all contributed to developing an updated survey methodology that aims to track trends in Mankarr populations on Martu country over time. Ranger teams from Jigalong, Parnngurr, Punmu and Kunawaritji helped to design a methodology for finding bilbies that is best suited to KJ rangers and create field resources that assist rangers when they are carrying out surveys. The Jigalong womenâ€™s ranger team trialed the survey technique over four days in September 2017, with seventeen rangers participating. At the site, the more experienced rangers taught those who were still learning how to identify Mankarr burrows, diggings, tracks and 14 | Rangelands Annual Report 2017-2018
scats, and how to identify some of the grasses and other foods that bilbies eat. The team visited mulga, sand plain, and clay pan habitats near Jigalong where they practiced carrying out surveys and habitat assessments and identified what management actions were needed at each site to keep country healthy for Mankarr and other wildlife.
Western Desert data on Naturemap Threatened species population data sharing matured greatly over 2017-18 with most of the Western Deserts ranger groups' track-based threatened species survey and monitoring data now live on NatureMapâ€”Western Australia's peak biodiversity data management system and public access portal. The NatureMap database, which was developed by the WA Department of Parks and Wildlife, is one of the main information sources for scientists evaluating the status of threatened native fauna in WA. Since 2008, Aboriginal ranger groups from
across WAâ€™s Western Deserts have systematically collected biodiversity data relating to threatened species and the threats these species face. The surveys covered Martu Country (in the Great Sandy, Gibson and Little Sandy deserts), Ngururrpa Country (in the Great Sandy Desert), Birriliburu Country (in the Little Sandy & Gibson deserts), Spinifex Country (in the Great Victoria Desert) and Yilka Country (in the Great Victoria Desert). This not only helps people gain an insight into the Traditional Ownersâ€™ understanding of their country, but also provides the rest of the scientific community with access to this valuable biodiversity survey data.
Reducing weeds and animal pests, and managing fire across the landscape Declared weed survey An aerial survey for declared weeds was undertaken in June 2017 in targeted sections of the West Pilbara to assess the effectiveness of control work. The helicopter survey, which took two days and 17 flying hours, was conducted by the Pilbara Mesquite Management
Feral cats have a big impact on wildlife (M.Butcher)
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Committee (PMMC), who undertake the regional coordination of declared weed programs across the Pilbara region, with particular focus on threatened species habitats. The survey was designed to verify the presence of key declared weed infestations (mesquite and parkinsonia), collect information on their density and provide data to the PMMC and stakeholders to assist in evaluating weed control management efforts to date and informing future priorities. At all locations where on-going weed control is undertaken, a reduction in the density of those infestations was recorded. This data and information also provides invaluable motivation and positive feedback to those land managers that are committed to this effort which is expensive, time consuming and laborious.
Removing Noogoora Burr weed (J.Kuiper)
16 | Rangelands Annual Report 2017-2018
Exclusion fence An electric exclusion fence was erected around the ecologically-valuable Nicholson Range to control total grazing pressure in the area. The Nicholson Range acts as a watershed between the Roderick and Sanford River systems, two regionally significant catchments in the Mid-West rangelands region. The range stretches between the Mt Wittenoom and Meka pastoral leases and covers an area of approximately 58,000 hectares. Uncontrolled access to the area by feral goats, kangaroos and unmanaged livestock has shown negative impacts with a decline in the overall function and health of this significant ecological site. By ensuring this system is preserved, the overall landscape function will be improved thereby reducing any impact of sediment load entering either of the significant drainage systems.
Feral camel control (M.Jensen)
Feral cull collaboration on desertpastoral interface
the habitat of a number of endangered species. Already over the last four years, the partnership between the Wiluna Shire and the Goldfields A focus on a regional solution to large feral Nullarbor Regional Biosecurity Association herbivore management across the desert(GNRBA) has culled around 8000 camels and pastoral interface of WA is resulting in key donkeys from pastoral lands, all carried out under biosecurity outcomes that benefit both pastoral the proviso of strict humane destruction against and desert land managers alike. The Wiluna national codes of practice. Extending the impacts Martu rangers of the Little Sandy Desert are of this culling program for greater benefits to forging new working relationships with their all land managers was at the heart of this new neighbours in the Pastoral/Desert Interface. collaboration. This includes the Wiluna Martu Traditional NAFI fire scar service Ownersâ€™ culturally-important Katjarra priority management zone (which includes the Carnarvon Ranges) of the Birriliburu Indigenous The Northern Australian Fire Information (NAFI) fire scar service continues (promoted by Protected Area (IPA), a category of nationally Rangelands NRM), with additional finer scale and internationally-recognised conservation mapping being produced and utilised where estate. This important zone of the Birriliburu partnerships allow. Results show the mix of IPA also borders with several pastoral ground and aerial-based burning is preventing the stations all with similar concerns around the spread of the subsequent hot season wildfires. Large Feral Herbivores (camels and donkeys All Western Desert ranger groups continue their particularly) that affect their livelihoods. They collaboration with non-indigenous fire ecologists. are causing damage to the environment, Historical fire scar mapping is being cross-checked reducing productive potentials of grazing lands, destroying important water sources and and combined with the corroborations of Elders (via direct oral interviews) who can still recall cultural sites (many of which are one and the being young adults and walking that country. same as the water sources) and threatening Rangelands Annual Report 2017-2018 | 17
This information informs annual burn plans of the different desert ecosystems and shows just how far Western Desert peoples (and their ranger programs) have advanced in implementing and promoting their fire management techniques and the degree to which desert fire management is integrated with non-indigenous fire management. The increased ability and capacity in terms of fire management has decreased the impact of late season wildfires and resulted in increased vegetation age diversity across the region. Also, the increased knowledge of specific populations of both threat fauna and Environment Protection and Biodiversity
Conservation (EPBC)-listed vulnerable fauna means that protective action can be better geographically targeted to increase effectiveness and relevance of project activities.
Attacking a gully head during rehydration workshop (M.Clunies-Ross) 18 | Rangelands Annual Report 2017-2018
Kija Rangers monitor fire (WWF)
Assisting pastoralists to improve their grazing practices, reduce erosion and make the most of water in the landscape Rehydration techniques Landscape ecologist Dr Hugh Pringle undertook station visits to help build the skills of land managers in the MurchisonGascoyne. He visited stations to spend time planning, setting out and advising on landscape function and rangelands rehydration techniques. Ecosystem Management UnderstandingTM (EMUTM) and intervention techniques were discussed through one-on-one (or small groups) situations to identify priority areas for intervention works. Building upon the base knowledge sessions (workshops) conducted over the previous 12 months, we can assist
land managers that are ready to conduct works and require onsite guidance. EMUTM tutorials provide natural resource management benefits through catchment rehydration improvements, soil conservation, stock feed promotion, confidence and efficiencies in onground works.
Environmentally Sustainable Rangeland Management (ESRM) plans ESRM plans assist pastoralists to prioritise and implement changes to land management practices by managing country to land systemsâ€”maintaining the rangelandâ€™s natural resource base while achieving business goals. Rangelands NRM assist pastoralists to undertake ESRM plans and also provide funding to undertake actions identified as priorities within the those plans. Following on from the initial planning on Brooking Springs and Mt House Station in the Kimberley, on ground works were undertaken to implement practice change to allow for spelling paddocks Rangelands Annual Report 2017-2018 | 19
Pilbara Livestock Cup (M.McDonald) C
and to reduce threatening processes. Through a surface water management plan and ESRM plan, priority areas were identified to improve fencing and managing erosion with grader banks.
[ESRM's are]...maintaining the rangelandâ€™s natural resource base while achieving business goals.' ESRM planning was also undertaken on Noreena Downs Station (Pilbara) with three family members participating in planning and visiting sites to learn about landscape rehydration, best practice fire management and reducing grazing pressures. Priority areas were identified, and actions planned out to mitigate threats to productive land systems. In the Southern Rangelands, two ESRM Plans were completed at Hillview Station and Mount Jackson Station. Continuing on from the development and initial implementation in 2017 of the Yarrie Station's whole of property 20 | Rangelands Annual Report 2017-2018
integrated fire and grazing management plan, new hot season burning was conducted in early 2018. With the help of fire ecologists Sarah Legge & Associates test burns were carried out in February 2018 and additional aerial ignitions were done in March 2018 using fixed wing aircraft and aerial incendiary procedures. Follow up fire scar mapping was undertaken using alternativelysourced high-resolution imagery. In this process, the bandwidths of the free Sentinel imagery are played with to make the burnt areas more prominent. Final maps will be used to progress the review of the Yarrie Fire Strategy and the implementation of the Yarrie Fire Plan in the coming fire seasons. This work has provided further development of real on-ground capacity to implement wholeof-property integrated fire and grazing management plans.
Supporting sustainable pastoralism During this period the Regional Landcare Facilitator (RLF) provided mentoring to a number of regional groups through their preparation of funding submissions at a state and federal level. The RLF engaged
in planning sessions with regional groups and individual land managers across the Murchison and Gascoyne regions to evoke regenerative agriculture discussion throughout the process. Engagement at this level ensured that natural resource management and landcare objectives were incorporated and maintained relevance in property and district planning initiatives. Community participation was also promoted through a soil conservation workshop that provided opportunity for land managers to meet practitioners and see onground works. Community engagement in NRM activities is critical in providing action and long-term outcomes for sustainable land management. The provision
of information or access to field professionals through events and the demonstration of improved practices by peers are outputs that enable this outcome. Continued engagement through the RLF project assisted in identifying these changes beyond the extent of the individual projects and developed tools with land managers to motivate continued improvement and industry infiltration. Improved environmental management across significant pastoral estate, has been coupled with improved pastoral production management (of stock and the feed base resource) as well as improvement of the social activity of the pastoral community.
Drone technology is helping gain a view of the land (G.Mackay)
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Supporting small groups to grow and become self-sufficient Ngadju Conservation manage independently 2017-18 saw a new phase for Indigenous organisation Ngadju Conservation as they secured Commonwealth funding to manage their ranger program independently. Ngadju have exclusive
'Ngadju Conservation has been recognised by the Commonwealth Government as a remarkable success story.' native title over some 4.5 million hectares of the Great Western Woodlands and nonexclusive native title over an additional 5 million hectares. Over the past six years, the Ngadju Conservation, Gondwana Link and Rangeland NRM program, funded through the National Landcare Program and other sources, has been recognised by the Commonwealth Government as a remarkable success story. This has enabled Ngadju to build the program and their capacity to the stage where they can drive and manage the next important phase themselves. This is exactly what 22 | Rangelands Annual Report 2017-2018
Rangelands NRM hopes to achieve when we support indigenous groups through providing project-based work.
Return to Country trips in the Great Victoria Desert Traditional Owners are strongly motivated to be involved in natural resource management on their country utilising western science conservation combined with their cultural and traditional ecological knowledge. The work is generating effective management programs and new knowledge about the biodiversity and management of these vast lands. It is also building organisational management capacity, pride in the community, and for many people the chance to visit with their Elders the sites known about, but never before seen in their lifetimes. The Spinifex and Pilki People (represented by Spinifex Land Management Team) have been going from strength to strength working in the Great Victoria Desert (GVD). With funding from the GVD Biodiversity Trust, they are progressing the Spinifex Healthy Country plan to action. This plan has become the central repository for groups' statements of value, their subsequent statement of intention on how they intend to care for Country and their investment prospectus for external parties wishing to co-invest in the management of their lands. Following on from 2017â€™s successful return to Country trip, Rangelands NRM supported the second week-long trip May 2018. Nearly the entire Tjuntjuntjara communityâ€” including Spinifex Tjilpi (Elders), Spinifex
PMMC 2018 control season gets underway (J.Kuiper)
and Pilki people— shifted en masse north to camp at the remote Ilkurlka, one of the most important Spinifex cultural sites. The importance of this work from a cultural, environmental and individual and community wellbeing perspective is inestimable. There are not many places left in Australia—or perhaps the world— who still have enough culturally-strong and knowledgeable elders who each have the unique and innate ability to share their lived pre-European culture and livelihood with their following generations.
practical skills throughout Northern WA. While KPCA’s was still a fledgling organisation in 2015, Rangelands NRM supported the Executive Officer role. This support enabled them to mature and transition into a leading organisation in the region, one that can be trusted to give strategic and helpful advice. Their membership has grown significantly and so too does their capacity to create positive influences in the landscape.
The Pilbara Livestock Handling Cup was held at Yarrie Station in August 2017 and saw 16 teams of three stockmen and women compete to take animals through Kimberley Pilbara Cattlemen’s a course, showcasing stockmanship skills. Association The course was designed to challenge the stock handlers and they were judged on The Kimberley Pilbara Cattleman’s quietness, team work, communication Association (KPCA) has been busy the and style in the yard and industry last year helping to build leadership and knowledge in the question and answer session. At the end of October 2017, the KPCA Ngadju Rangers entering data (Ngadju Conservation) Innovation Conference was held in Kununurra to bring innovation to the region and creating networking opportunities. With around 195 delegates, this was a great event to build confidence within the industry and share positive land management stories. In November 2017, KPCA ran a five-day Leadership Boot Camp in Broome to build leadership skills and capacity in not only our managers, but also aspiring leaders. In December 2017, Emma White took over from Catherine Marriott as Chief Executive Office. Rangelands Annual Report 2017-2018 | 23
Board Directors Regina Flugge Title: Chair Date of Appointment: 18 March 2011 Qualifications: BApSc; MSc; MBA; MMgt; DBA Experience & Expertise: Regina has a long history with natural resource management including being a member of the Rangelands Regional Assessment Panel for the Natural Heritage Trust in the late 1990’s. Regina has over 30 years of experience in environment and sustainable development roles and has worked in the education, government, not-forprofit and corporate sectors. Her career includes substantial experience in the resources industry including working for 16 years in the Pilbara region. Regina is an experienced Non-Executive director with over 16 years of experience on statutory and not-for-profit Boards and Committees. Regina is a Member and Graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and a Fellow of the Australian Institute of Management. 24 | Rangelands Annual Report 2017-2018
Regina was a WA Finalist in the Telstra Business Women’s Awards in 2014 and 2015. Other current directorships: None Former Directorships: Director – Sustainable Energy Association of Austraila, Member – Governing Council of the West Pilbara College of Technical and Further Education Current Ministerial Appointment: Member – Biosecurity Council of Western Australia Past Ministerial Appointments: Commissioner – Conservation and Parks Commission (to May 2018), Commissioner/Deputy Chair – Conservation Commission of Western Australia, Member – Air Quality Coordinating Committee, Member – Coastal Planning and Coordination Council Special RNRM responsibilities: Audit & Risk Committee, Remuneration & Nominations Committee Conflicts of Interest: Member of Biosecurity Council of WA
Stock handling in the Pilbara
Andrew Whitmarsh Title: Deputy Chair Date of Appointment: 7 November 2013 Qualifications: BBus (Accounting) Experience & Expertise: Andrew was born and grew up on a cattle and horticulture farm in Pemberton. He moved to Dongara in 1997 where he operated a family beef cattle business and served on the Irwin LCDC committee and also on the Mingenew-Irwin Group of which he is still currently a member. In December 2005, the family business expanded into the pastoral areas through the purchase of Byro and Ballythunna stations. Andrew married in 2010 and now has two little girls running around. Andrew is currently the president of Murchison LCDC, dogging coordinator for Murchison region of Carnarvon Rangelands Biosecurity Association, and deputy president of the Shire of Murchison. Other current directorships: Director - Revive Nominees Pty Ltd Former Directorships: Secretary/Treasurer – Irwin LCDC,
Secretary/Treasurer – Mingenew-Irwin Group, Secretary/Treasurer – Carnarvon Regional Biosecurity Assocation Special RNRM responsibilities: Audit & Risk Committee Conflict of interest: »» Murchison LCDC Chair »» Murchison Shire Vice President »» Carnarvon RBA North Murchison coordinator »» Leaseholder Byro & Ballythunna Stations »» Member of MIG
Mike Clark Title: Director Date of Appointment: 16 November 2011 Experience & Expertise: Mike has over 37 years’ work experience in natural resource management in the Northern Territory and North West Western Australia. He is currently the Principal at Australian Vegetation Management Services, prior to which Rangelands Annual Report 2017-2018 | 25
he worked for Greening Australia (WA) as the Pilbara Program Manager for six years. Mike has experience in technical and scientific fields of horticultural research, native plant landscaping, forestry, nursery production, botany, resource survey, native flora management planning, development of landscape scale conservation projects, off-reserve conservation and carbon sequestration initiatives. Major programs he has worked on include One Billion Trees, National Corridors of Green, Bushcare Support (Natural Heritage Trust), Forestry for Farms, Farm Forestry Support, Farm Forestry Regional Support, Aboriginal Landcare Education Program, River Recovery, Pilbara Conservation Program, Pilbara Indigenous CLM Training Program, Pilbara Corridors Project, Land for Wildlife (NT), and Eco- Link (NT). Mike holds a Diploma in Applied Science (Natural Resource Management). Other current directorships: None Former Directorships: Director - NT Natural Resource Management Board Special RNRM responsibilities: None Conflicts of interest: None
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Kim Eckert Title: Director Date of Appointment: 6 November 2013 Experience & Expertise: Kim has lived in Kalgoorlie for ten years. For the past five years, she has been the Chief Executive Officer for KalgoorlieBoulder Urban Landcare Group (KBULG) where she enjoys spending time with the Goldfield’s community, raising awareness and educating them on all things to do with the environment. This includes growing Goldfield’s Natives in KBULG’s nursery, water wise projects, clean up days, tree planting, recycling and together with her staff and the Council, maintaining Karlkurla Bushland Park. As well as being on the Rangelands NRM Board, Kim is a WA Park Ambassador and is also involved with many local groups. Kim is a Committee Member - The Palace Theatre Recreation Centre, Committee Member - Kalgoorlie-Boulder Lotteries House, Committee Member - Goldfield’s Naturalists’. Is on the Develop and Promote Tourism Stakeholder Group for the City of Kalgoorlie-Boulder. She is also a Member of the Australian Institute of Company Directors. Kim’s main passions in life are spending time with family and friends, the environment, volunteering, education, reading, travelling and experiencing different cultures.
Other current directorships: Chairperson - Kalgoorlie-Boulder Volunteer Centre Former Directorships: Secretary - Golden Mile Loopline Railway Society Special RNRM responsibilities: Audit & Risk Committee Conflicts of Interest: CEO of Kalgoorlie-Boulder Urban Landcare Group (KBULG)
Robert Edkins Title: Director Date of Appointment: 7 March 2017 Qualifications: BSc (Multidisciplinary Science); BA (Social Sciences) with Upper Second Class Honours Experience & Expertise: Robert is an agribusiness specialist and experienced executive with demonstrated success in the senior management of complex operations with a focus on business development, natural resource management, agricultural farming systems, stakeholder engagement, governance, transparency and accountability and organisational change. Robert is an exfarmer, with over 20 years’ experience in
senior management including 12 years as Chief Executive Officer and director of both ‘for profit’ and ‘not for profit’ companies and organisations. He has successfully implemented complex multi-faceted economic, social and environmental programs, which have seen over A$100 million direct funding delivered into regional development projects across the State of Western Australia and Australia. He has been CEO and a director of South Coast NRM, a Director of Regional Development Australia – Great Southern and is currently Manging Director of Food Fibre and Land International Group and has sat on numerous advisory committees for both the Western Australian and Australian Governments. Robert has an interest in sustainable, profitable farming systems that deliver superior quality fibre and highly nutritious foods. Other current directorships: President - Swan Christian Education Association; Chairman - Point Peron Aquatic, Youth and Family Association Former Directorships: Board Member - Regional Development Australia – Great Southern, Director Metabolic Symphony Special RNRM responsibilities: Remuneration & Nominations Committee Conflicts of interest: Managing Director of Food Fibre and Land International Group
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Board Remuneration & Attendances Board remuneration and other payments
Board and committee attendances
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Prickly acacia control (K.Watson)
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Wildflowers in the Southern Murchison (K.Watson)
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Rangelands NRM Team AS AT 30 JUNE 2018
CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER
PROGRAM & SPECIALIST PROJECT DIRECTOR
CHIEF FINANCIAL OFFICER & COMPANY SECRETARY
MARKETING & COMMUNICATIONS MANAGER
PROGRAM MANAGER (EASTERN RANGELANDS)
PROGRAM MANAGER (NORTHERN RANGELANDS)
PROGRAM MANAGER (SOUTHERN RANGELANDS)
EVAUATION & PROJECT MANAGER
REGIONAL LANDCARE FACILITATOR
Mary-Anne Clunies-Ross PROJECT OFFICER
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Road to Fitzroy (G.Mackay)
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Perth (Head Office)
Suite 1 125 Melville Parade Como WA 6152
Broome 11 Lotteries House 20 Cable Beach Road East Broome WA 6725
Tel: 08 9468 8250
Tel: 08 9192 5507
The annual report of Rangelands NRM Co-ordinating Group Inc.