International RiverFoundation has awarded the 2013 Australian Riverprize to the Glenelg River of Victoria.

The award was presented at the Riverprize Gala Dinner in Brisbane on Tuesday 24 September. The Australian Riverprize, worth $200,000, is funded by the Australian Government’s Water Smart Australia program.

The Glenelg Hopkins Catchment Management Authority received the award for demonstrating success over a decade through community supported river restoration activities; and providing leadership to bring the Glenelg River to a higher standard of health. Farming families, conservation groups and industry have all rallied together to construct 1600km of fencing, plant over 500,000 trees and directly seed 770km of waterways frontage to protect the river.

The Glenelg River, located in the South-West of Victoria, was at the point of collapse ten years ago due to poor water quality, low flows, loss of habitat and carp invasion. The work of the Glenelg Hopkins CMA and partners has dramatically improved fish movement and populations have increased by over 150 per cent in restored reaches.

The Glenelg River will now automatically qualify as a finalist for the Thiess International Riverprize in 2014.

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