History of WPSP
At the EPA sponsored ‘Action Western Port’ conference in May 1999, delegates identified the need for an independent advocate to foster seagrass protection, research and restoration.
EPA asked Professor John Swan to chair a planning committee to consider what sort of organization would be best suited for this purpose and provided assistance to undertake extensive community consultation over a period of about nine months. This consultation suggested the desirability of a not for profit independent and legally constituted organization that could actively promote the protection and restoration of the ecosystems of Western Port.
On 13 July 2000, it was proposed and agreed that a not for profit Company limited by guarantee should be formed, with the name Western Port Seagrass Partnership. The Company would be fully independent of government or vested interests, be community orientated and draw on a wide range of expertise to guide its activities. The aim was to promote partnership based approaches to improving the understanding, protection and restoration of the ecosystems of Western port and its iconic seagrass communities.
By October 2000 an interim Board was appointed with Professor John Swan as inaugural Chairman and initial financial support provided by EPA, BHP. ESSO, and P&O Ports.
The Western Port Seagrass Partnership Limited was established on the 3rd May 2001 with a Trust that was later registered as an Environmental Organization, which enables it to receive donations which are tax-deductible as gifts to charity.
Regular board meetings and AGMs have been held since this time.