The Andrews Labor Government today launched the Waterways of the West Action Plan to better protect and manage the rivers and creeks of Werribee.

Member for Werribee Tim Pallas welcomed the new action plan after two years of consultation with Traditional Owners, Werribee community groups and water stakeholders.

Rapid population growth and climate change demand new approaches to managing our iconic urban rivers and creeks.

The action plan recognises that these waterways are interconnected, living entities and that the Bunurong, Wadawurrung and Wurundjeri Woi wurrung Traditional Owners are their voices. These new approaches to waterways management will embed Traditional Owners voices that have been ignored and marginalised in the centre of decision-making.

The Bunurong, Wadawurrung and Wurundjeri Woi wurrung Traditional Owners are better empowered to self-determine their involvement in the planning and decision-making for waterways so that their aspirations for Country and culture are realised.

The Waterways of the West includes the Werribee River.

Regional planning policies and new planning controls have been developed to protect these waterways from inappropriate development, while further planning controls will extend to other waterways.

An independently chaired Waterway Pollution Prevention Taskforce will be established to support the action plan, bringing together representatives from Traditional Owners, Melbourne Water, the Environment Protection Authority, local government to collaboratively address waterway pollution in the west.

The Andrews Labor Government is already committing $3.6 million to deliver the Waterways of the West Action Plan and Melbourne Water has over $40 million on investment planned over the next five years for stormwater management, 1,000 hectares of revegetation and ongoing maintenance.

To view the Action Plan, visit:

Quotes attributable to Minister for Water Lisa Neville

“I would like to recognise the work of the Ministerial Advisory Committee, the Traditional Owners, stakeholders and more than 250 community members who contributed.”

Quotes attributable to Minister for Planning Richard Wynne

“New planning policy and controls – to be delivered across the life of the action plan – will work to safeguard the natural landscape and amenity values of the Waterways of the West from inappropriate development.”

Quotes attributable to Member for Werribee Tim Pallas

“We’re caring for Werribee rivers, creeks and riparian landscapes as unique, interconnected living systems, protecting them from pollution and overdevelopment.”