Melbourne’s west is set to benefit from on-ground action as part of a joint 20 Million Trees and Green Army initiative to re-establish green areas across west Melbourne.
Lead West – a partnership of local councils, major businesses and organisations in west Melbourne – will plant one million trees as part of the initiative, while seven Green Army teams will work to improve the extent, condition and connectivity of vegetation across the region.
This is a $6 million investment to greening west Melbourne which will contribute to sustainable, liveable, healthy communities across the six western municipalities of Brimbank, Hobsons Bay, Maribyrnong, Melton, Moonee Valley and Wyndham City Councils.
We are undertaking a range of actions as part of our commitment to protect urban green spaces in the west of Melbourne for future generations.
Plantings will occur in five key areas:
• Werribee River Nature Link
• Point Cook Coastal Park and Port Phillip Bay Western Shoreline Nature Link
• Maribyrnong River Valley Nature Link
• Kororoit Creek Nature Links and Brimbank Urban Environs
• Toolern Creek and Melton Urban Environs
Lead West will work in collaboration with around 30 local community groups to contribute to sustainable, liveable, healthy communities through urban and peri-urban revegetation.
Urban revegetation is important because it supports a range of environmental services, such as regulating the temperature, improving air quality and storing carbon dioxide. It also provides habitat and catchment benefits that assist in creating liveable communities.
Green Army teams will work on a range of activities such as revegetation to enhance aquatic ecosystems; riparian revegetation to protect threatened species and improve habitat; controlling weeds and erosion to create linkages and provide habitat for indigenous fauna; growing suitable plants and planting tube stock; and rejuvenating parks with landscaping.
Green Army projects to be rolled out in West Melbourne include:
• 10,000 Trees in 10 Parks at Brimbank
• Greening the Maribyrnong at Jackson’s Creek and Emu Creek escarpments
• Two projects to restore Maribyrnong Valley
• Moonee Ponds Creek Rehabilitation
• Western Treatment Plant Grasslands and Ramsar Wetlands Enhancement, and
• Point Cook Coastal Park and Cheetham Wetlands Habitat and Landscape Enhancement
The young Australians participating in these Green Army projects have taken up the opportunity to be a part of one of the Government’s major environmental initiatives and will help to deliver important conservation outcomes across Melbourne’s west.
During the next few months we will see first-hand the benefits and improvements made to this region through activities undertaken by the Green Army.
In addition to generating environment benefits for this community, participants will gain valuable training and experience to help them prepare for the workforce, further training and improving their career opportunities.
Today I am visiting the Green Army team working on the 10,000 Trees in 10 Parks project.
This project will ensure Brimbank’s parks and open spaces continue to have mature trees that provide native biodiversity values to the region. The team’s activities will increase habitat and attract birds and other wildlife while improving the functional connectivity of wildlife biolinks.
I am also pleased to announce today that the Australian Government has engaged three service providers to deliver large-scale tree planting projects across Australia.
CO2 Australia, Greening Australia and Landcare Australia will work with local communities to help deliver on the Government’s election commitment to plant 20 million trees by 2020.
The service providers will plant trees to re-establish green corridors across our landscapes, provide habitat for our threatened species, while also reducing Australia’s greenhouse gas emissions.
The work of the three service providers will complement other components of the 20 Million Trees Programme, including competitive grants which have already commenced.
Further information on the Green Army Programme is available at www.environment.gov.au/green-army
More information about the 20 Million Trees Programme is available at www.nrm.gov.au/20-million-trees