‘Rum Jungle’ clean-up enters final stage

Published: Wednesday, 22 May 2019 at 3:26:36 PM

The ‘Rum Jungle’ will undergo its final clean-up this weekend with members of the community coming together on Sunday morning to collect and remove smaller bits of rubbish from the site.

City of Greater Geraldton Mayor Shane Van Styn said the project is being undertaken in partnership with the local community.

“Drummond Cove resident Heather Beswick met with City officers to discuss the community’s desire to clean up the triangular strip of Crown Land, located on the west side of  Chapman Road just south of Macedonia Drive,” he said.

“The City is always keen to support community initiatives when, and where it can, which includes partnering with Drummond Cove residents to get the work done.”

The project began in February 2019 with the mechanical removal of highly invasive African boxthorn plants and illegally dumped car bodies and heavy whitegoods. The piles of boxthorn were later burned on site in a controlled burn.

Project initiator Heather Beswick thanked the City and community for their assistance with the project and said the staged clean-up has raised awareness around illegal dumping and the impact invasive species are having on the environment.

“I’d like to thank the City of Greater Geraldton for partnering with the community to achieve such a positive outcome along with the Drummond Cove Progress Association and all the local businesses who have supported the clean-up,” she said.

 “This project has certainly raised awareness about how our bushland in and around the City is being mistreated and how important it is for the community to be more responsible and take ‘ownership’ of these spaces.

“Although you could see there was a lot of boxthorn in the Rum Jungle, I was shocked to see piles of the removed plants, equivalent in size to 16, 8m long shipping containers, amassed within the 1.6 hectare site.

“Now that the boxthorn is gone, the area is much lighter and easier to see into which will hopefully reduce the problem of illegal dumping,” she added.

The community clean-up of Rum Jungle will take place on Sunday 26 May 2019 from 8am to approximately 10am. Members of the community interested in taking part should wear long sleeves and pants, bring along a hat and water bottle. A barbeque will be held following the clean-up to thank volunteers for their hard work. The City will also have Boxthorn Blitz Kits on site and training volunteers how to use them.

For more information on the project, which is part of the Keep Australia Beautiful ‘Adopt-a-Spot’ Program, contact City of Greater Geraldton Environmental Planning Officer Erin O’Conner on 9956 6600.

PICTURE CAPTION:

Volunteer Firefighters conducted a controlled burn of piles of African boxthorn at the ‘Rum Jungle’.

Volunteer Firefighters conducting a controlled burn of piles of African boxthorn at the ‘Rum Jungle’.

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