Drum roll please… Welcome to Wurneet Laang Laang; the first Greenfleet owned property in Victoria! Nestled in the hills of South Gippsland just 1.5 hours from Melbourne, another carbon sequestering, native forest is taking shape. In June 2016, Greenfleet planted 50,000 native seedlings on the 66-hectare site.
The property was named ‘Wurneet Laang Laang’, meaning stony creek/river in the Boon Wurrung language. The Boon Wurrung people or the Kulin Nation are the traditional people and custodians of the lands from the Werribee River to Wilson Promontory in Victoria. We consulted with the Victorian Aboriginal Corporation of Languages to ensure the chosen name was correct. The name is very fitting for the landscape and acknowledges the traditional owners of the land and long history of the place.
Greenfleet's mission is to protect our climate by restoring our forests. Like all our forests, as it grows the forest at Wurneet Laang Laang will sequester carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. A genuine and practical way to fight climate change with many other environmental benefits.
Most of our reforestation projects are funded by individuals and organisations who donate to offset their carbon emissions. When we receive a carbon offset donation, we have a commitment to plant enough trees to create a forest that will absorb the amount of carbon dioxide our supporter wants to offset. So it’s no wonder that the carbon potential of each site is crucial for our projects!
Our forestry team uses FullCAM, the National Carbon Accounting Tool developed by CSIRO, to determine the amount of carbon that will be stored in our future forest on every potential site. Due to the mix of native flora species and high rainfall in this part of Victoria, Gippsland is considered as a high carbon yield area. In a century, our magnificent forest at Wurneet Laang Laang will have offset 84,000 tonnes of CO2-e – that would fill up over 427,000 hot air balloons or the Melbourne Cricket Ground more than 27 times!
Not only will this reforestation project sequester a great amount of carbon, it is also going to restore ecosystems. Two unique ecosystems previously existed on the property; EVCs (Ecological Vegetation Classes). As a result of decades of farming and agriculture, the Wet Forest EVC has been depleted while the Damp Forest is endangered, with less than 10% of the original spread remaining.
Our reforestation projects aim to replicate the native land that once existed. This is one of the many reasons why our Greenfleet forests grow so well. Supporting the return of nature ecosystems brings balance back to the land and preserves biodiversity. At Wurneet Laang Laang, we strategically planted the native seedlings amongst the hills to achieve the best results. The paperbark, eucalyptus and tea tree species (to name a few) will grow anywhere from 5 metres to over 30 metres. In time, this will create a canopy with dense forest throughout. Perfect for the return of native animals and insects.
Our reforestation project will soon see local grasses planted along the edge of the dams and streams of the site to restore habitat for the South Gippsland Spiny Crayfish – a small freshwater crayfish, endemic to occurs Wilsons Promontory and the Strzelecki Ranges.