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Native trees planted to fight climate change

Michael Coleman plants native trees Source: Greenfleet

Did you know, you can offset your carbon emissions? And that a trained eye can immediately distinguish which forest is indigenous? Greenfleet’s Michael Coleman explains how.


  • Non-native plants can over-compete the native fauna and tip over the balance
  • Planting native trees brings many benefits from improved water quality to fire risk reduction
  • By planting trees you can offset your carbon emissions – for your car for one year or a whole life…



It probably doesn’t come as a surprise that it is important that the forests are indigenous. Michael Coleman, general manager of Greenfleet, explains that introduced species have the potential to tip over the balance of the local ecosystem.

Some of the long term effects of introducing non indigenous species are not even yet known.

The good news, according to Michael Coleman, is that whilst there are a lot of introduced species many local ecosystems are thriving, even out-competing the non-native species.

He also observed that many areas have been deforested and parts of farms have been cleared unnecessarily.

This is where Greenfleet comes in, planting trees in these places. Since 1997 the organisation has already planted well over 9 million trees.

native flora in Australia
Native Australian forest
Getty Images/Melanie Stetson Freeman

“The reason why we do it, is to offset carbon emissions, but we know that there are many other benefits to that.”

The positive outcomes include improved quality of water, increased water retention in the countryside, potentially better fire safety as well as a healthier bio diversity…and it is beautiful as well. 

You can “pay off” your carbon emissions.

We all have a carbon foot print; and mundane things like using a car or taking a plane increase the production of carbon-dioxide. If too many of us have too big a footprint, as we currently do, we are faced with climate change. It may seem a bit hard to change, but it is really possible.

forest, Australia
Forests help fight climate change
Sarka Pechova

What we can do, as Michael Coleman explains, is simple things like offsetting our own carbon emissions by planting trees and forests.

He stresses that the number of trees required to offset emissions produced by one car has been calculated; though that number varies by location fewer trees than expected are actually required.


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