An ambitious plan to green the western suburbs of Melbourne with the planting of 1 million new trees took an important step today with $5 million funding from the Federal Government’s 20 Million Trees program.
Coordinated by LeadWest, the ‘1MT’ (1 million trees) project will involve community groups and organisations from across the western metropolitan area with the aim of higher levels of urban greening, ultimately leading towards improved levels of health in the community.
LeadWest CEO Craig Rowley said he was pleased to see the much needed funding to improve the environmental outcomes and amenity of many areas across Melbourne’s western suburbs.
“This funding announcement is great news for the hundreds of thousands of residents and businesses that call the western suburbs of Melbourne home,” Mr Rowley said.
“The 1MT project will not only bring together groups from across the landscape, but it will also provide the broader community with a visible improvement to suburban parks, creek corridors and open space.”
“For too long, many areas in the western suburbs have suffered as a result of minimal vegetation and green cover, and this initiative is set to address that imbalance and deliver positive outcomes for the community.”
Among the many areas set to be transformed through the 1MT project, 40,000 trees will be planted in the Werribee River Regional Park and 10,000 trees within 10 parks within Brimbank.
Selection for projects under the 1MT project will be determined by a working group made up of representatives of land managers in the west. Representatives include local councils (Brimbank, Hobsons Bay, Maribyrnong, Melton, Moonee Valley and Wyndham), Melbourne Water, City West Water, Western Water, VicRoads, Friends of Lower Kororoit Creek, Port Phillip and Westernport Catchment Management Authority, and Parks Victoria.
Mr Rowley said the 1MT project represents a once-in-a-generation opportunity for the community to drastically improve liveability and environmental outcomes in the western suburbs.
“We’re excited to be leading this important initiative on behalf of the community, and we look forward to fostering partnerships among the community to deliver real benefits to the western metropolitan region overall.