Thank you for your article on our dying river system, the Curdies. It is a historical problem of pollution of our waterways and a future problem because it looks like nothing will be done to stop this.
The simple solution to the problem is 'riparian buffer zones' - a fancy way of describing planting of native vegetation buffer zones. Under the Victoria Planning and Environment Act 1987, a permit is required where proposed activity is within 30 metres of a watercourse, a council responsibility.
The Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning is responsible for the administration of Crown land water frontages, including licensing and ensuring compliance with licence conditions.
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The complexity occurs when we realise that we expect our environment is protected by the multitude of authorities who have a finger in the pie of the Curdies, but the reality is it isn't. The Curdies and the inlet at Peterborough are too easy to ignore.
Readers would probably be unaware the Curdies inlet is listed as endangered, it is an 'open-coast salt-wedge estuary' (Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (EPBC Act)). This relates to the special nature of the river with its different layers of water each with different fish. This means the federal government has a role, by law, to protect the Curdies.
We have a federal election coming up soon. Our representative has not been doing his job to protect and #SavetheCurdies. Please vote wisely. Our heritage is being wasted for lack of political will.
Barbara Mullen, Peterborough
The Standard has stated on most days that house prices are exponentially rising. The consequence is tenants in rented properties as rent is increasing dramatically.
Rent is determined by a percentage of the market value of the unit. I have heard of rents rising by $60 a week.
A pension of $1130 means $700 is to be paid each fortnight in rent in most cases. This leaves about $400 a fortnight to which electricity, insurances, groceries and medication has to be accounted for. Dare I say tyres and travel are out of the question.
Meat and fuel have risen to unsalable heights.
Unfortunately, I dip into my savings to simply stay alive. This is not sustainable. I have worked hard all my life and yet don't have a lot of super or savings.
The rental properties are deplorable in that my neighbour's unit has not been painted internally for more than 50 years. She keeps the unit like a home, not a house.
The garden is beautiful and without a thing out of place. Yet the unit is old and unkept as the owner should keep it. I am sure the owner would not live in such conditions.
Like a number of women and men, we don't have huge superannuation to call upon. We rely on charities to supplement food and clothing.
The federal coalition is touting a $250 one-off payment to welfare recipients. Is this a 'buy votes' scenario? Wow, this will be welcome for a day. Then what?
Graeme Broderick, Warrnambool
There are times when it feels as though the world moves from one tragic event to another. It's certainly felt that way recently. Sometimes our personal lives can feel like that, too.
But even in the midst of that hardship and heartache, there is a message of good news and hope. For The Salvos, that hope is found in Jesus and revealed to us through the Easter story.
Coming into Easter this year, our country has faced devastating natural disasters like floods and bushfires, the continual rise of the cost of living, and the enduring threat of COVID-19. For some, there has been little to hope for.
But as we look to Easter, we see the hope of the world manifested in the life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. When we reflect on the events of the very first Easter two thousand years ago, we see it as a time that embodies the message of hope after hardship.
When Jesus died on a cross on Good Friday, all hope seemed lost for all who followed Him. But the story didn't end there.
On Easter Sunday, Jesus rose from the grave into new life. From the devastation and tragedy came hope and joy, and this hope can be with us today. We believe God can take our tragedy and turn it into joy. He can offer us a path to hope.
Research undertaken for The Salvation Army late last year revealed a quarter of Australians were worried and stressed about their mental health.
Other research, among people who had received emergency relief from The Salvos, showed that many of them did not feel valued (43 per cent) or loved (36 per cent). Figures like this break our hearts. We do not want anyone to feel this way because we believe everyone is valuable and loved.
This is what urges us to continue working towards our vision as The Salvation Army to "live, love and fight, alongside others, to transform Australia one life at a time with the love of Jesus".
This Easter we want to encourage you to seek support from your local Salvos. Whether you need someone to talk to, a place to develop meaningful relationships or somewhere to find spiritual connection, we are here for you. We can also provide practical support if your current situation is weighing you down.
Last April, The Salvation Army's Moneycare financial services provided nearly 4800 sessions of care and our Doorways Emergency Relief services provided more than 20,000 sessions of care to people in need. Hope is available.
We encourage you to take action this Easter and seek comfort in God's hope and love. No situation you are facing is too difficult for God to handle. We invite you to visit your local Salvos church this Easter to celebrate this wonderful gift. For more information, go to salvationarmy.org.au/Easter
Commissioners Janine and Robert Donaldson, The Salvation Army Australia
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