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The Victorian Government released the Barwon / Barre Warre Yulluk Action Plan to ensure this iconic catchment can thrive and be enjoyed as a natural treasure for many years.

The Barwon River and the tributaries that feed it are valuable natural assets. The major rivers in the catchment are:

  • Parwan / Barwon
  • Murrabul / Moorabool
  • Yarowee / Yarrowee
  • Waywatcurtan / Leigh

View the map showing the boundaries

Registered Aboriginal Party boundaries within Rivers of the Barwon region. Wadawurrung RAP, Easter Maar RAP
Registered Aboriginal Party boundaries within Rivers of the Barwon region

The significance of the Rivers of the Barwon

The Barwon catchment is spiritually and culturally significant for the Eastern Maar and Wadawurrung Traditional Owners.

The Wadawurrung People call the waterways Barre Warre Yulluk. This means the great river (Yulluk) that runs from the mountains (Barre) to the ocean (Warre).

The waterways support the liveability, amenity and recreation for growing populations. They also support:

  • diverse agriculture
  • horticulture
  • an expanding economy.

Protecting the rivers for future generations

The Barwon catchment has some of the state’s most flow-stressed rivers. Population growth and a changing climate will increase pressure on the catchment.

Waterways are also valuable places for people to connect with nature and each other and in doing so support health and wellbeing.

The Rivers of the Barwon / Barre Warre Yulluk Action Plan lays out comprehensive steps to protect the catchment and to ensure it can be enjoyed as a community asset for future generations.

The action plan

The plan identifies 7 directions and 30 actions. Short-term actions aim to deliver results within the first year of implementation. Longer-term actions will deliver results within 5 years. The plan addresses:

  • waterway health
  • waterway amenity
  • Traditional Owner involvement in waterway planning and management
  • stronger land use planning
  • development controls and standards to guard against inappropriate development.

This Action Plan will drive an enduring legacy of protection for the region’s waterways and a new way of working, where Traditional Owner and community voices continue to shape waterway protection, with strong support from regulatory, institutional, and legislative arrangements.

The Victorian Government has invested $17 million over 4 years towards improving our iconic urban waterways, including funding for the Rivers of the Barwon and Waterways of the West Action Plan.

Of this $17 million commitment, $4.3 million has already been committed to fund actions and projects in the Rivers of the Barwon Action Plan that will protect and manage waterways in the Barwon catchment for the next 5 years.

The Victorian Government is committed to updating the community annually on progress towards delivery of the 5 year Rivers of the Barwon / Barre Warre Yulluk Action Plan.

Annual reports will be released following each calendar year of implementation. Read the Rivers of the Barwon / Barre Warre Yulluk Annual Report.

Action plan and consultation report

Page last updated: 16/02/24