Lucy Curno Media Releases Revive

#SeaToSource helps locals clean up River Torrens

River Torrens, South Australia

There aren’t many of us who could provide a home for an endangered Mountain Galaxias fish, which is why Torrens River deserves a thank you for doing so.

South Australia’s magnificent Torrens River, stretching over 85kms, is the focus of #SeaToSource, Conservation Volunteers Australia’s (CVA) latest project in the region. As part of #SeaToSource, CVA is showcasing eight rivers and urban waterways around Australia and sharing stories about their importance to the local environment and threats the rivers are facing from plastic litter. 

#SeaToSource aims to involve communities around Australia to tackle litter at its source, before it reaches our waterways, and ultimately to protect the Great Southern Reef which stretches from Western Australia to Queensland.

The Torrens River is the first cab off the rank, and a worthy place to start.

Stretching from Mount Pleasant in the Adelaide Hills to enter the Gulf of St Vincent at Henley Beach, the Torrens River flows through a range of environments from farmland to residential suburbs and the city center of Adelaide. The river also provides a crucial home for plants and wildlife as well as valuable outdoor recreation spaces for local communities. CVA have committed to lending a helping hand to protect the river over the coming years through #SeaToSource which is backed by the Australian Government.

Like many other organisations this year, CVA have moved to use online platforms to enable people to take action for nature, to complement the hands on volunteering they’re known for in the region. The CVA Campfire, their new digital community platform, allows people to share their personal experiences and stories with the Torrens River, and encourages locals to initiate their own clean-up using an app called ‘Litter Stopper’. Each individual story and litter survey can be shared on The Campfire as a virtual community river clean up – pending covid-19, CVA will run community events in person again soon.

CVA Project Officer, Emily Zhang, has been on the ground doing her part to clean the river throughout COVID-19, and says she can’t wait for more of the community to get involved.

“The Torrens River is such an integral part of our lives, and it’s exciting that we now have a way to protect it and engage with each other online. I love seeing what people find and it makes it extra rewarding when we start to join the dots of where the litter is coming from. In other rivers that we’ve been working with, the CVA team found a bunch of sugar sachets and managed to track down the café that were coming from and offered them little bins, which they gladly accepted. It’s a practical and small change, but the litter stopped immediately.

Plastic is around 60-95% of the litter in our waterways and oceans and causes a wide range of issues in these environments. A significant source of litter is urban footpaths and parks, which are drained by storm water systems that flow into rivers and creeks. By cleaning up litter before it enters rivers and oceans, we can all be a part of taking action for nature.”

CVA are inviting everyone who cares about tackling plastic litter to get on board and share their stories about their time spent on the Torrens River.


Conservation Volunteers Australia (CVA) is a national organisation working with communities to rebalance nature for a stronger, more resilient future. We combine evidence-based practices and people power to make real and lasting change at scale. Founded in 1982, CVA is a leader in delivering practical initiatives, community involvement and training programs with volunteer opportunities offered all year round, to encourage anyone across Australia to take action for nature. Through our work, we’re building a more harmonious and helpful relationship between people and nature and we’ve been recognised with many significant awards, including the United Nations’ Environment Program Global 500, 6 Banksia Environmental Foundation Awards, Coastal Award for Excellence, UNWTO Ulysses Award for Innovation in Non-Governmental Organizations & Prime Minister’s Award for Excellence in Community Business Partnerships.

For more information, visit

#SeaToSource is a project supported by the Australian Government under the Environment Restoration Fund. Find out more at

#SeaToSource is part of Conservation Volunteers Australia’s Revive campaign, which engages communities to care deeply for their local aquatic habitats.

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