About Rivers of Carbon

The care of rivers is not a question of rivers, but of the human heart. – Tanako Shozo –

Rivers of carbon are rivers of life!  We work with landholders to protect and restore their rivers so that the fish, birds, platypus and other animals that call the river ‘home’, can thrive.  Looking after our rivers makes sense, as trees, shrubs and reeds along our riverbanks stop erosion, filter and trap sediment, provide habitat for native animals, and make our rivers great places to swim, paddle and picnic.  Our work is extending riparian corridors into the wider landscape to facilitate species movement in the face of climate change.

We are also encouraging landholders to make use of the current incentives for riparian rehabilitation because in the future they may be able to claim carbon credits for the work they do.  Carbon farming is in its early stages, but landholders can undertake revegetation now, for multiple purposes, with the added incentive of potentially being able to claim carbon credits in the future.  The Rivers of Carbon (RoC) project supports such works, enabling farmers to achieve production and biodiversity goals now, while also getting carbon into the landscape at subsidised rates.

The RoC approach is one where the landholder manages the riparian zone within the context of the overall farm or land management plan.  This means they employ different, yet integrated strategies to boost soil productivity along streams and rivers, as well as revegetating the areas to create biodiverse carbon sinks.  By working in partnership with landholders RoC aims to link biodiversity hotspots (centred on riparian vegetation of high conservation value and threatened species throughout the Murrumbidgee, Boorowa, Yass, Lachlan, Breadalbane and Goulburn catchments) to intact vegetation, with expanding habitat availability a  priority.  Both in-stream and riparian habitat will be restored by enhancing and linking existing native vegetation and revegetation sites, enabling movement of wildlife across the landscape.

Project Locations

Currently, our Rivers of Carbon projects are in the Yass, Lachlan, Murrumbidgee, Goulburn and, most recently Breadalbane regions, but we are always looking for new opportunities to extend the approach to other rivers.  We focus on stretches of river with high recovery potential, and  priority is given to areas with populations of threatened species (eg. Southern Pygmy Perch & Macquarie Perch Southern Bell Frog) that are reliant on riparian areas, as well as sites that are critical linkages between areas of threatened intact riparian vegetation.

Another priority is linking past projects such as Boorowa River Recovery – Greening Australia, Bidgee Banks and ACT River Rescue (to name a few).  Rather than reinventing the wheel, our team is working with motivated people to consolidate and extend past efforts, creating riparian corridors that link into the wider landscape and enabling species such as the Southern Bell Frog and the Superb Parrot to move more freely. Priorities also encompass extensive riparian works undertaken by  groups working in the Murrumbidgee, Goulburn, Yass and Lachlan Catchments.  The initial project Rivers of Carbon: Southern Riparian Linkages, has now been joined by four more regional projects where we are working with Landcare and Government organisations to deliver great outcomes on-ground. We are delighted that these projects are using the Rivers of Carbon model, as we know it is one that works to prioritise biodiversity and carbon sequestration, but at the same time give benefits to landowners.

To find out more about these projects visit Our Partners page

Getting involved

Rivers of Carbon offers a range of incentives for fencing, vegetation establishment, stock water and ongoing support. For example, a landholder may receive up to $4000 per kilometre for fencing, the full cost of tubestock and/or direct seeding, and incentives for stock water as appropriate. Each site is assessed on a case by case basis and appropriate actions are tailored according to the conservation needs of the site, farm business and landholder’s vision.  If you are interested in getting involved, please get in touch with the RoC Team:

Siwan Lovett:  Australian River Restoration Centre /siwan.lovett@arrc.com.au/ T: 0422 939 583  (Program Manager)
Lori Gould: Australian River Restoration Centre/ lori@grassroots.com.au / T: 0439 030 058 (Program Advisor)
Haydn Burgess: Greening Australia / hburgess@act.greeningaustralia.org.au/ T: 0439 030 059  (Program Coordinator Yass, Southern Riparian Linkages, Goulburn & Breadalbane projects)
Mary Bonet: Upper Lachlan Landcare / mary@upperlachlanlandcare.org.au / T: 0459352892 (Program Coordinator Goulburn & Breadalbane)
Antia Brademann: Upper Murrumbidgee Demo Reach / facilitator@upperbidgeereach.org.au / T:0429 778 633 (Program Coordinator Upper Murrumbidgee)