Taronga Conservation Society Australia will establish their first carbon offset in partnership with Woolworths. The project will fund the regeneration of extensive forested areas in Western NSW.
The aim of the project is to offset carbon produced by the manufacture of the Super Animals Wildlife Collectibles album that Taronga and Woolworths have released. 4761 tonnes of carbon will be offset through the group’s support of the Urisino Ecosystem Regeneration project.
Project Urisno lies on 800 square kilometres (308 square miles) that was once owned by pastoralist, Sir Sydney Kidman. This property was degraded and overgrazed. It will be the first carbon project in Australia that works to regenerate degraded land.
Cameron Kerr, Director of Taronga Zoo said, “The collectables campaign have been one of the most successful education initiatives, bringing Australian and international wildlife to hundreds of thousands of primary students who enjoyed discovering the wonder of wildlife through the facts and illustrations on the cards.”
“This off-set program is the next important step in our commitment to the environment in support of wildlife. It shows what can be achieved when organisations like Woolworths and Taronga work together for with conservation and the environment,” he added.
The Urisno Project provides habitat to species including the brolga, Major Mitchells Cockatoo, the Bush Stone Curlew, Stimson’s python and black breasted buzzard along with a range of other species.
Funding will support regeneration across the three properties that are part of the project. This will see the natural absorption of carbon dioxide rapidly expand helping to offset the carbon costs of producing millions of swap cards for Australians.
Woolworths Head of Properties, Sponsorship and events said, “Woolworths is delighted that the funds we contributed through the Super Animals Program is going to help in our own backyard and help educate Aussie kids about our amazing wildlife”.
Taronga and Woolworths already work together on projects looking to track sea turtles and will soon begin a partnership with Macquarie University to research Port Jackson Sharks.
At Taronga the zoo on its own recycle 1/3 of water used on site daily, they have one of the highest recycling rates in Sydney and provide solar thermal heating to their lemurs. In Dubbo at Taronga Western Plains Zoo they have a solar energy system for Billabong Camp as well solar thermal heating and power at the new elephant facility. This has seen power use reduce by 30-40%.