Author: Sue Rosen
An Environmental History of the Hawkesbury-Nepean Catchment
This work presents a history of environmental change in the Hawkesbury-Nepean River system and its catchment since 1788. It is essentially history and that story is one of appropriation, occupation and land use and abuse that has a correlation with accelerating environmental decline and degradation.
An almost universal theme of the many chroniclers of the British invasion was the lands capacity for 'improvement' and they surveyed all that they saw with this in mind. Inspired by a belief in the capability of reason to dominate nature the men of the "age of science" were on a mission to create an existence in which nature would serve their needs. It was an environment, however, of which they had minimal understanding and which unbeknownst to them had been maintained in a sustainable balance by Aboriginal people using practises that had been evolving for at least 40 000 years.