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Protection of the Environment Trust

Established in 2006, the Protection of the Environment Trust (POET) promotes the protection and enhancement of the natural environment within the former Gosford City Council Local Government Area.

 The purpose of the Protection of the Environment Trust (POET) is to:

  • Promote the protection and enhancement of the natural environment, and the conservation of indigenous flora and fauna in the former Gosford City Council Local Government Area.
  • Provide information or education or the carrying on of research about the natural environment or a significant aspect of the natural environment in particular relating to flora and fauna of the area for the benefit of persons with the Local Government area.

To achieve these purposes the POET runs an annual grant program to provide small amounts of financial support to individuals, groups and organisations in the community that are able to deliver projects and works that contribute to the stated purpose of the Trust.

How we're helping?

18 years Championing the environment and conserving land.

31+ Protected hectares

39+ Projects Funded

Why Donate?

POET funds research and education projects about the natural environment, particularly relating to flora and fauna indigenous to the Central Coast for the benefit of persons within the Central Coast Local Government Area. Read on to discover previously funded projects.

Umina Coastal Sandplain Woodland species corridor

Applicant: Peninsula Environmental Group Supporting Grow Urban Shade Trees (GUST) Group

Trust funding: $3,230

A sum of $3,230 was allocated to a local community group in the 2022/23 round of the Protection of the Environment Trust (PoET) Grants Program to restore an area of Umina Coastal Sandplain Woodland (UCSW) on public land in Paul Street on the Umina-Woy Woy area. The community group purchased plants of local provenance that naturally occur in the UCSW and planted them a local park to support existing remnants of the vegetation community. 

The UCSW naturally occurs in a very restricted range, which includes the Peninsula. Large areas of UCSW were cleared on the Peninsula as development occurred. Most of the larger remaining patches of UCSW are located on Council managed reserves in Woy Woy and Umina. The grounds of the Brisbane Water Secondary College also support a significant area of UCSW, and smaller remnants occur elsewhere on the Peninsula. 

The revegetation works undertaken by the local community group with the support of the PoET grant funds will help strengthen one of the smaller remnants of this special native and localised plant community. 

Matcham Holgate Feral Fox Control Program

Applicant: Matcham Holgate Feral Fox Control Program

Trust funding: $4,500

The Protection of the Environment Trust (PoET) funded a local community group to support a program for controlling foxes moving across the local landscape. The $4,500 allocated under the 22/23 round of the PoET grant program allowed the community group to engage a licensed and experienced pest animal contractor to remove foxes where landowners chose to participate in the program. This program complements the fox control programs undertaken on Council land and other public land as foxes move freely across land boundaries.  

The European Red Fox has a varied diet, which includes native fauna including small mammals, birds, and reptiles.  Fox predation on native fauna is listed as a key threatening process on NSW and Commonwealth legislation. Fox predation is a known cause of the decline, and in some instances, the extinction of, native fauna. Most of our Australian native animals occur nowhere else in the world and reducing fox predation gives them a good chance of surviving for future generations. 

Intensive Care Incubators for WIRES Central Coast

Applicant: NSW Wildlife Information Rescue and Education Service Inc.

Trust funding: $8,043

The 2019/20 round of the Protection of the Environment Trust grants provided $8,403 to the Wildlife Information Rescue and Education Service (WIRES) Central Coast to purchase five intensive care incubators to raise sick and injured young animals.  

Incubators are a vital component in caring for neonatal mammals such as macropods (wallabies and kangaroos), possums, and bats, as well as eggs, hatchling birds, and other orphaned wildlife.

Extremely young mammals need an incubator that provides ambient heat; especially babies that have no fur yet and their eyes are still closed. ICU incubators are vital to improving survival outcomes for the most vulnerable sick, injured, and orphaned native animals. At the time, WIRES Central Coast had no incubators for use by its volunteers.

The intensive care units provide for higher rates of success in raising young animals and are also used for hospital care for other sick and injured animals. The units were allocated to WIRES volunteers across the Central Coast branch of WIRES and are an invaluable tool in helping us provide expert care for rescued wildlife.

Local Species Interpretive Signs for Rumbalara Environmental Education Centre

Applicant: Rumbalara Environmental Education Centre

Trust Funding: $3,000

The grant funds from the Protection of the Environment Trust in the 2018/19 round enabled the Rumbalara Environmental Education Centre develop and mount two large interpretive signs at the centre aimed at increasing the community’s, including school students', understanding of local fauna.

The wording for the new signs was developed with local scientists, the Office of Environment and Heritage and Council’s environment officers.  One of the signs focusses on threatened species known to be in Rumbalara Reserve such as glossy black-cockatoos, powerful owls, yellow-bellied gliders and grey-headed flying-foxes. The second sign focusses on other common animals that are discussed in the centre’s teaching programs such as long-nosed bandicoots, brush turkeys, native bees, sugar gliders, ringtail and brush-tail possums and swamp wallabies. 

UON Soft Coral in Brisbane Water

Applicant: University of Newcastle

Trust funding: $9,620

The Protection of the Environment Trust Grants Program supported a research project in the 2017/2018 round of grants. This project funding of $9,620 supported the University of Newcastle’s project to determine and map the extent of the soft coral Deondronephyta australis near the entrance to Brisbane Water.  The coral has limited distribution yet forms a habitat in the estuarine environment that supports commercially significant and protected marine species.  The research was able to identity and map the locations of the soft coral in the channel between Brisbane Water and Broken Bay.  Funds provide by the trust covered part of the cost of the researchers, assistants and data analysis.


Coastal Open Space Strategy (COSS) Corridors Project

The Protection of the Environment Trust contributed $50,000 to the former Gosford City Council in the 2012/13 financial year to conduct fauna surveys of natural area reserves for the COSS Corridors Project.

The funds were used to purchase survey equipment, a virtual server to store data accessible to external institutions, analysis of bat, bird and frog calls and wages for staff.

The project surveyed a total of 93 sites within 43 natural area reserves, with priority given to reserves identified in the former Gosford Local Government Area COSS Corridors Project.

Bush Regeneration-COSS Reserves

Bush regeneration in Coastal Open Spaces Strategy (COSS) reserves is an activity that has received ongoing funding from POET.

Funds received from POET by Council to support Bushcare activities include, $23,000 in the 2010/11, 2011/12 and 2012/13 financial years, $15,000 in the 2013/14 financial year, and $20,000 in the 2015/16 and 2016/17 financial years.

The funding has been used by the former Gosford City Council (and now Central Coast Council) to support volunteer Bushcare activities and professional bush regeneration at Bushcare sites in the COSS including:

  • Katandra Reserve
  • Kenmare Rd, Green Point
  • Capers Gully
  • Rumbalara Reserve
  • Cockrone Lagoon
  • McMasters Beach
  • Putty Beach

With thanks
Image contributors: Rumbalara Environmental Education Centre, WIRES, Troy Gaston and Andrew Robinson

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