Our Partnership has a range of priorities it is championing. Some of these have led to new initiatives in our region.
Read about some of these projects below.
The Goulburn Regional Partnership is shining a light on the bright future of renewable energy in the region.
In 2019 the Hume Renewable Energy Roadmap was completed and launched to outline the future of renewable energy in Goulburn and neighbouring Ovens Murray Partnership areas. This project was identified by the Goulburn Regional Partnership as a priority for addressing opportunities for renewable energy generation and storage within the region as well as to address issues with energy availability and affordability for communities and industry. The Roadmap was developed by the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning and engaged a significant number of community energy groups, businesses and communities in order to highlight positive stories of renewable energy uptake within the region as well as outline the opportunities for Goulburn’s renewable energy future.
The Roadmap highlights a significant opportunity for the development of Pumped Hydro Energy Storage (PHES) within the region. There are enough potential PHES sites within the Hume Region, appropriate from an engineering perspective, to support a 100% renewable energy grid for Australia 13 times over. Similarly - Goulburn is ideally positioned to develop bio waste-to-energy generation with 16% of Victoria’s organic waste being generated in the region.
The Roadmap also outlines the potential to drive greater coordination and management of energy grids through the region’s high number of community energy groups and geographic advantages. Increased management of the energy grid through distributed energy resources will deliver increased energy security and affordability for businesses and communities within the Goulburn region.
The Partnership continues to advocate for investment in these action areas that the Roadmap has defined as well as other projects and initiatives which align with the Roadmap.
Our Partnership is uncovering the untapped tourism potential of Lake Eildon and its surrounds.
The Activating Lake Eildon project, which has been identified through the Goulburn Regional Partnership, is exploring how the potential of Lake Eildon as a key tourism asset within the region can be unlocked.
Currently home to over 700 licensed houseboats and over 2000 holiday homes, Lake Eildon and its surrounds sees a significant number of visitors come to the region. However, despite the significant influx of visitors to the area, the flow-on to businesses in spending is lower than other comparable tourism destinations. This project seeks to understand what opportunities exist to improve the tourism experience of this key asset and how to grow its capacity.
The project - being led by Tourism North East, is working with local government, industry, communities, local leaders and key tourism groups to determine what exciting opportunities exist for Eildon. Business cases are being developed for a number of feasible opportunities which will support expanding the tourism experience of the Lake and its surrounds.
Agriculture is, without a doubt, a major industry in our region.
Home to nationally significant agricultural land and fertile soils, agriculture in the Goulburn region accounts for nine percent of regional Victoria’s Gross Regional Product and is worth $6.5 billion annually.
The Goulburn Regional Partnership is partnered with Agriculture Victoria, the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP), and climate change and policy specialists, to support the Goulburn region’s agriculture sector to understand how adoption of new technology and systems can assist in responding to changing climatic conditions.
The Partnership was successful in receiving funding to undertake a detailed analysis of the operating environment in the Goulburn region, to inform further policy development.
The project examined the situation of climate change in Goulburn with a focus on agriculture and uptake of leading climate change research and development, identified gaps and opportunities, and facilitated and encouraged practice change at the producer level and along the supply chain.
The project was able to successfully engage a significant cohort of producers and empower them to access the most up-to-date climate information through capacity building and the development of resources and toolkits for access and interpretation of data.
Under current predictions, the Goulburn region can expect more days of extreme heat in the future, along with harsher fire weather, less rainfall and more frequent and heavy downpours. The impacts of climate change are already being felt in the region, including lower annual pasture growth, winter chill affecting fruit and nut trees and compressed vintages in vineyards.
Identifying and supporting place-based programs that are improving support to vulnerable young people and their families, and keeping young people engaged, was a top priority for the Goulburn Regional Partnership when it presented to the Rural and Regional Ministerial Committee in February 2017, following the region’s first Assembly.
In May 2017, the Greater Shepparton Lighthouse Project received $3 million in the State Budget.
The Lighthouse Project is a place-based initiative that aims to support the wellbeing of, and outcomes for, young people in the City of Greater Shepparton. The Project has 340 volunteers and 20 business partners committed to a 20-year plan to improve education and other outcomes for the area’s young people; and engages with parents, young people, residents, community leaders, government, funders, thought leaders and academics.
The Project includes mapping existing services, promoting integrated service delivery and growing the community’s aspiration to bring about lasting change so that more children are ready for school, transition successfully to secondary school, are healthy and happy in their teens, complete Year 12, and transition to work or further study.
Funding from the Victorian Government means more support for children in the region to be school-ready, resilient, healthy and happy, explains David McKenzie, Goulburn Partnership Chair.
Following discussions at our Partnership’s 2017 Regional Assembly in Seymour, the Goulburn Regional Partnership put revitalising the town high on its priority agenda.
In October 2018, the Victorian Government committed a package of funding for the Seymour Revitalisation Initiative (SRI), which will see a whole of Government approach to unlocking the town’s potential and ensuring it is best placed for the future.
The funding includes $300,000 for investment logic mapping and the creation of a business case to guide public and private investment to support business growth, tourism activation and employment opportunities in the town, as well as to find solutions to addressing multi-generational disadvantage.
There has been $500,000 committed to upgrade facilities at some of Seymour’s most utilised community assets, with works already underway on upgrades to Kings Park, Goulburn Park and Chittick Park.
The projects include a refurbishment of the change facilities, toilets and kitchen in the main pavilion at Kings Park and replacing the lighting in the neighbouring green exhibition building. Goulburn Park will receive upgrades to the toilets, playground and landscaping, to further enhance the installation of the new fishing platform on the river, while Chittick Park will see landscaping and amenity improvements and the creation of a new space for youth activities, including a basketball half-court, as well as the installation of air conditioning units in the stadium, benefitting the many sports teams who use the facility.
There is also funding for a feasibility study to explore what is required to link Seymour to Tallarook as part of the Great Victorian Rail Trail, and funding for a networking event in the coming months bringing together local businesses with prospective purchasers of local tourism, food and wine products and services.
This whole-of-Government focus on Seymour is great news for the town and the region,” explains Goulburn Regional Partnership Chair David McKenzie. “Seymour has the potential to become a much stronger economic and tourism hub, being both well connected and with affordable housing. The Partnership is looking forward to working with local business and Government to continue to focus on building Seymour’s capacity for the future.”