Over the last 6-8 months I have been working with a wonderful not for profit organisation called the Australian River Restoration Centre.

Australia is the driest inhabited continent, and the continuing drought emphasises the need to better manage our precious water resources. Without water and the river systems that sustain its quality, our rural, urban and unique ecological communities cannot survive. We know that only one third of our river systems are in good condition, another third show clear symptoms of degradation, and the remainder are already in poor condition — and getting worse. We need to act now to reverse these trends.

To be able to ‘act’ people need access to training, education, resources, support and enthusiasm – this is what the Australian River Restoration Centre (ARRC) has been established to provide. People are tired of being moved on to different government programs, processes and people – the ARRC is established on the basis of meeting their needs for the long-term.

The ARRC is a not-for-profit organisation. It’s mission is to:

Support, facilitate and provide opportunities for Australians to work together to protect, maintain, restore and celebrate our riverine environments.

We do this by providing a range of free and commercial services, with all proceeds going back into the ARRC to continually improve, update and invest in the best knowledge, resources and opportunities for sharing information we can provide across Australia. We also have strong international links to the European and Asian River Restoration Centres, as well as with organisations doing similar work in Canada and North America.

The ARRC seeks to connect people with an interest in river restoration, whether they are scientists, irrigators, conservationists, government employees or someone with an interest in their local creek. The ARRC is needed because it is difficult for these people to work out who is doing what in river restoration and management. It is an organisation that will link, connect, facilitate and provide opportunities for people to access the information and skills they need to accomplish their river restoration objectives.

One of my projects has been taking all the river research publications created under our river research projects and uploading the full text of these into Australian Agriculture and Natural Resources Online (AANRO).  At the moment some of this material is indexed in AANRO but the full text of the documents is not yet available.  Along with Alison Carter, another recovering librarian, we are working on a volunteer basis to ensure that all this wonderful research is not lost to the world.

I would love to hear your comments on this project.