How the Burnett River Catchment works

(upbeat music) – Hi, my name’s Jesse, and I live in Gayndah, Queensland. I’m here to share what I know about floods and what it means for my family and mates at places like Bundaberg, Gayndah, Mundubbera, and Monto. Who, like me, live right here in the
Burnett River catchment. This is the Burnett River catchment. It’s 33,000 square kilometres. That’s huge. It’s home to more than 88,000 people and attracts a heap of visitors thanks to tourism and seasonal workers. Did you know that 1/3 of our catchment is made up of farming and agriculture? And it brings in nearly $12 billion to the Queensland economy every year. So protecting our economy from floods is really important. It’s something all our
businesses need to plan for. One of the reasons our
land is so productive is thanks to the river systems that carry water and nutrients
throughout our catchment. But that’s not all that gets
carried by our river system. Did you know the greatest
threat to our environment here is weeds being spread by floodwaters? So living here is all about
taking the good with the bad and embracing floods as
part of our livelihood. It means keeping our wits about us by making sure we understand our risk and knowing how we can build
our resilience to floods. Flooding is part and parcel
of living in the catchment. Don’t believe me? Check out these records
going back to 1870. And our traditional owners tell us that even bigger floods happened. But how does the catchment
work, I hear you ask. The upper catchment is where you’ll see some of our most beautiful rolling hills. When it rains up here, it can create flash flooding that can be fast flowing with limited flood warning times. This type of flooding can
sometimes take people by surprise. The mid and lower part of the catchment is where you’ll find
most of our river towns. It’s where the catchment
waterways enter the Burnett River. History tells us that in extreme floods, the water can rise very quickly and has potential to
catch people off guard. The flood waters can be
deep and fast flowing as they make their way out of
the mouth of the Burnett River and out to the Pacific Ocean. That’s why we need to invest in our flood warning infrastructure to give our communities as much warning of floods as possible so they can be safe. Our four councils are working together to help us strengthen our resilience by understanding flooding and what it means for our country. Together, we care for
and respect one another, and the environment in which
we live, work, and play. Especially during times of flood. So now I need your help to spread the word so that everyone living in and visiting our catchment understands the important role we all play in being a flood resilient community. Do your bit to get ready
and plan for floods. Understand your flood risk, and what it means for you. And get to know your neighbours and find out if anyone needs
your help during a flood. Last but not least, find out more about
how our catchment works and help us spread the word. (upbeat music)

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