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Greenfleet purchases first Victorian property to restore ecosystems and preserve biodiversity
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Greenfleet purchases first Victorian property to restore ecosystems and preserve biodiversity

It’s a chilly winter day. The morning fog is dissipating and the bright green landscape sets the scene for a stunning sunrise. Quietly, nature stirs; birds and insects perform their morning dance as Michael and Eoghan drive up the narrow track leading to the property. 

Nestled in the rolling hills of South Gippsland, one and a half hours east of Melbourne, stands this ‘unnamed’ 66 ha block of land. Our forestry team is here to inspect the site of a potential forest. It’s a big day, as Greenfleet will soon become the proud owner of this Victorian property – a first in our 19-year history.

As in many places around Australia, the land was stripped bare of its original vegetation upon European settlement. The property, which was once a large dairy farm, was recently subdivided and used for beef cattle. The steep slopes made it difficult for farming. After decades of grazing, Greenfleet has grand plans for this property: we have the dream to restore the original landscape.

Imagine what these green hills will look like in a few years’ time covered with a beautiful native forest, buzzing with life.

Fast-forward eight months later, here we are today: keys in hand, ready to make this happen. Site preparation is underway; with track repairs, spraying of noxious weeds and fence removal. The soon-to-be planted native trees and shrubs are already growing in trays at the nursery.

When researching the history of the site we uncovered some interesting facts. In the 1750’s, the property consisted of two ecosystem types known as EVCs (Ecological Vegetation Classes): Wet Forest and Damp Forest. Both EVCs have particular conservation status in Victoria. While the Wet Forest EVC is depleted1, the Damp Forest vegetation type is endangered1 with less than 10% of the original spread remaining. Greenfleet’s native reforestation work on this property will have significant impact in the restoration of these ecosystems by extending their presence in the bioregion.

We are excited that carbon offset donations are able to fund this impactful revegetation project. In winter this year, more than 50,000 native seedlings will be put in the ground manually by a team of professional tree planting contractors.

As the forest grows, it will provide many environmental benefits:

  • The trees will grow stronger and larger by capturing carbon from the atmosphere, which is helping to fight climate change. In our jargon, we say this site has a high ‘carbon yield’ – plainly it just means that it will sequester A LOT of carbon.
  • Local native birds, insects, reptiles and marsupials will have a place to call home. Restoring habitat for wildlife is one of the most rewarding and noticeable changes. It’s a beautiful sight to see a forest alive with wildlife, where there was only green grass before.
  • By increasing biodiversity locally, bringing back wildlife and restoring ecosystems, we hope that this reforestation project will also enhance productivity of the neighbouring properties.

When you think about it, it’s invigorating to see how powerful a simple $60* donation to offset carbon emissions with Greenfleet is. Together with our supporters we’re making a huge difference to the Australian environment. This reforestation project is another demonstration of the impact donations to Greenfleet have.


Panorama photo of the landscape at Greenfleet's new property in Victoria


 

 

 

WE NEED YOUR HELP - OUR PROPERTY NEEDS A NAME!


Click here to vote for your favourite name in our 'naming competition' >>

(Edit of May 2016: the poll is now closed. Click here to find out the new name of our property!)

 



1 Source: depi.vic.gov.au Bioregion Benchmark for Vegetation Quality Assessment - Strzelecki Ranges bioregion (EVC 29: Damp Forest and EVC 30: Wet Forest)

 

* For a tax-deductible donation of $60.16, individuals can offset the average annual emissions of a medium-sized car. Greenfleet will plant enough trees to form a forest and capture the annual emissions on behalf of the offsetter. Who said it was difficult to take practical climate action? Click here to offset today!


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