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Bushfire crisis update

Smoke haze over the Grampians. Photo credit: Karin Holzknecht

Our hearts go out to all those who have been affected by the ongoing bushfire emergency across Australia. There have been devastating impacts for people and nature, and there’s still weeks of summer to go. We especially acknowledge the outstanding effort and sacrifice of volunteers and country fire agencies, many of our own people are involved in the volunteer response.

We thank you for all your messages of concern and support – we don’t know the full impact of the fires on our plantings yet, although we know one site in WA has been affected. We need to ensure it’s safe before going in to assess the damage and plan the best way forward. We’ll provide updates as and when possible.

UPDATE: Yarrabee, a Greening Australia property in Gondwana Link, SW WA had been affected by the recent bushfires. We’re heartened to announce that two members of WA staff visited the property last week and noted some re-sprouting of a range of species two months after the fire in 5-year-old revegetation.

It’s early days still – some areas remain scorched and we still need to wait for germination of natives or potential weeds. But with some recent rain we’ve received an early promise that not all is lost. We will be monitoring this site’s progress into the future.

When the time is right – that is, when local communities and critical assets are safe and the immediate danger has passed – Greening Australia stands ready to assist in recovery efforts across the nation, as we’ve done following other fires in the past. We will work with government and partner agencies to prioritise support where we can, as part of long-term bushfire recovery and climate adaptation efforts.

There are several frontline organisations currently responding to the crisis, you can find out more or donate here.

There’s no denying that the immediate loss of flora and fauna is worsening threats to vulnerable species, making our efforts to restore habitat across Australia vitally important. We are currently partnering with triple j on for their annual Hottest 100 poll, raising awareness of our ecological restoration efforts to combat the effects of climate change. Please visit this page for more information.

UPDATE: The federal government has announced an initial investment of $50 million for emergency wildlife and habitat recovery. This includes $5 million for Greening Australia to lead a strategic native seed and restoration program as part of bushfire recovery efforts.