Lockdown leads to green future

The initiative is paving the way for more biodiversity for the community to enjoy.

By Gabriella Payne

A program implemented by the City of Greater Dandenong has seen 54,000 native seedlings planted throughout the city by council staff whose work was affected by the pandemic.

Not wanting time in lockdown to go to waste, this program kick-started the council’s vision for a greener future, whilst simultaneously providing work for staff during a tough and unprecedented year.

After declaring a ‘Climate and Ecological Emergency’ at the beginning of 2020, this initiative aims to pave the way for more biodiversity in the local community that everyone can enjoy.

By protecting and bettering the native environment, the council believes that the City of Greater Dandenong will benefit in the long run.

“The healthier and more diverse each ecosystem or environment is, the more it can withstand the pressures of climate change and pollution,” the council said in a statement.

It’s hoped that this move will help create “a better future for all” and there are already promising signs that past efforts to improve local biodiversity are working.

The blue-billed duck, a near threatened species, was recently spotted by residents at wetlands in Tatterson Park, having returned after not being seen for some time.

Biodiversity is not just a project for parklands though, and the council is encouraging locals to go green in their own backyards and nature strips.

A new Biodiversity Action Plan is currently being developed by the council, and staff want to hear from the community to help create a strong, healthy environment together.

A survey is now open for residents to share their input on the City of Greater Dandenong Council website, and will run until Wednesday 9 December.

Each completed survey will go into the running to win a selection of native wildflowers to the value of $50.

Visit www.greaterdandenong.com for more information.