Polishing up a rare gem


Turquoise is a rare gemstone highly prized for its unique colour and value. It should come as no surprise then that the West Australian coast between Guilderton and Pt Denison has adopted this name, reflecting these attributes. And now the Turquoise Coast has another valuable gem.

For the last nine years, NACC NRM has supported regular information sharing forums for Coastcare Groups along the Turquoise Coast. These community-led events help attendees better understand the coastal environment and give participants a renewed sense of purpose. However, this in turn introduces a new challenge: translating the enthusiasm of a capacity-built Coastcare community into strategic on-ground actions. Enter the Coastal Managers.

Coastal manager and Coastcare representative attendees of inaugural TCMG meeting in Jurien Bay (August 2021). Photo credit: NACC NRM, Geraldton.

With the blessing of the Coastcare community, NACC NRM’s Coastal Team obtained support from DPLH’s Coastwest Grants Program to organise the first meeting of the Turquoise Coast Management Group (TCMG). This group, comprising coastal managers (Shires of Gingin, Dandaragan and Coorow, and DBCA – Department of Biodiversity, Conservation and Attractions) and representatives of all major Coastcare groups in the corresponding areas, met in early August to workshop objectives for the new group. Members also discussed long-term sustainability, particularly in the face of reduced funding pools. It is early days for the sustainability discussion, but there is abundant enthusiasm amongst TCMG members to sustain the group in the short term.

“I was thrilled with this inaugural meeting and how all stakeholders were fully engaged in the process”, Ms Tegan Knowles, NACC NRM Coastcare Support Officer, said “A huge amount of information was generated at the meeting. The challenge now will be to distill this down to develop objectives and an operational model that will work for everyone in the long term.”

NACC NRM is grateful to Coastwest for providing start-up funding for this project. We are looking forward to polishing up this little gem into the future.

Story supplied by NACC NRM, Geraldton.

Top photo: Jurien Bay; photo credit: ZFizzle, CC BY-SA 4.0 via Wikimedia Commons