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Earlier this year, we shared that Adelaide Festival would be teaming up with Wilderlands to protect precious biodiversity in the Coorong Lakes region. The partnership has now been officially announced - read more below.

Adelaide Festival audiences have the opportunity to protect their very own one square metre patch within the Coorong Lakes project by registering on the Wilderlands website. Claim your free one square metre unit:

Adelaide Festival has partnered with Wilderlands to protect 1712 square metres of vulnerable habitat in the Coorong Lakes region and is inviting audiences to join them in helping protect Australia’s precious biodiversity - one square metre at a time.

The partnership with conservation startup Wilderlands will enable the Festival to secure some of the world’s first voluntary biodiversity units which promise permanent protection of one square metre plots of land and 20 years of management within high ecological value projects across Australia.

Adelaide Festival Chief Executive Kath M Mainland said the commitment reflected a critical moment for environmental action and she believes it is the responsibility of the Adelaide Festival, in collaboration with others, to demonstrate the potential of art and science to act on climate.

“Adelaide Festival is committed to being part of the global conversation and playing our part to reverse nature loss by 2030, which includes protecting our old growth forests, ecosystems and endangered species and habitat ecosystems,” said Mainland.

“By encouraging our audiences, artists, and partners to join us in supporting these initiatives, we hope to further raise awareness of and promote effective finance mechanisms that increase funding towards nature-based solutions.”

Adelaide Festival audiences have the opportunity to protect their very own one square metre patch within the Coorong Lakes project by registering on the Wilderlands website.

The campaign has a collective goal to reach 3030 sqm of vulnerable habitat protected in recognition of the recent announcement by the Australian Government who have joined 190 countries in committing to protect 30% of nature by 2030.

Sustainability Officer Beatrice Jeavons said the campaign builds on Adelaide Festival’s environmental commitments and encourages audiences to join the Festival in contributing to biodiversity protection and reforestation. 

“There was no better place to start by supporting a project in our own backyard of the Coorong region,” she said.  

The Coorong Lakes project is a conservation reserve that has received global recognition due to the innovative partnership between renowned biodiversity protection organisation Cassinia Environmental and the Traditional Owners of the region, the Ngarrindjeri people, who are working together to preserve one of Australia’s most important wetland areas.

The project is host to a rich diversity of native plants and animals, including the rare Cleland’s Beard-heath (Leucopogon clelandii) and the rare and elusive Elegant Parrot (Neophema elegans). Conservation priorities include buffering remnant patches of vegetation through revegetation of native species in areas of the land that have been formerly cleared from agriculture, as well as ensuring native seed collection and nursery propagation for supplementary planting of rare plants.

Wilderlands CEO Ash Knop said the partnership is reflective of a growing number of organisations looking to include biodiversity protection as a priority for their business while also looking for solutions which can help provide assurances of where their money is going.

“What makes us unique is that every Biological Diversity Unit is geotagged and certified so you can zoom in and see exactly where you’re supporting and receive reports from our ecologists on the ground – we know this level of transparency is important for both individuals and organisations,” said Knop.

“We’re thrilled to partner with Adelaide Festival and it’s great to see them become one of the first events to truly commit to taking action and embed this type of environmental impact into their program.”

Since launching in August 2022, Wilderlands has protected over 50,000 square metres of vulnerable Australian habitat across four projects including Crowes Lookout and Budgerum in Victoria, Alleena in New South Wales, and Coorong Lakes in South Australia.

Generously supported by James Darling AM & Lesley Forwood.

Photo: Wilderlands Co-Founder Paul Dettmann working alongside Wayne Mark at the Coorong Lakes project as part of their partnership with the Ngarrindjeri people.