Getting Started on an Environmental Planting Project

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If you’re thinking about planting native trees on your land, it’s worth finding out how many carbon credits you could earn.


There are multiple options available to landowners who undertake an environmental planting carbon project through the Australian Carbon Credit Unit (ACCU) Scheme. You can either retire your credits to contribute towards Australia’s greenhouse gas emissions reduction target, keep them to reduce your own carbon footprint, or sell them to cover the cost of the project (and maybe even make a tidy profit!). All while doing something wonderful for Australia’s biodiversity! 


The first step to understanding the potential of carbon farming is to undertake a feasibility study. We offer three different types here at CFF, depending on how much information you need: 

  1. Indicative Assessment – this is a FREE back-of-envelope assessment of a single tree planting scenario which will give you and idea of how many ACCUs you’d be entitled to, how much your project is likely to cost and how much you could earn if you sold the credits at a range of different future prices. 
  2. Feasibility Presentation – this is a more detailed approach delivered via a 1.5-hour video presentation and Q&A with our team. We’ll provide more refined financial analysis and cashflow modelling, along with some key eligibility assessments. We’ll talk you through next steps, project timelines and risk factors. This costs $1,500 + GST and includes the development of a carbon heatmap showing the areas of your land that will generate the most credits. 
  3. Feasibility Report – this is the highest-level study we provide for clients who require more detail, such as to secure project finance from the bank or shareholders. It includes a comprehensive eligibility and suitability assessment, specific recommendations to enhance returns and manage risks, and scenario comparisons of yield, costs, gross profits and cashflow. From $3,000 + GST. 

If your project is larger than 200ha, we’ll assess the feasibility of registering it with the regular Reforestation by Environmental or Mallee Plantings FullCAM method. If it’s smaller than 200ha, we can also assess your opportunity to register with the Environmental Plantings Pilot, which is designed to be an easier option for smaller landholders. It requires no audits, has a simplified reporting process, and can often work out to be more economical. 


What we need from you to get started: 

  • Your property boundaries (KML, SHP or another spatial file is ideal but we can work with what you have handy)
  • An idea of where you plan to plant your trees
  • Whether you’d like to retain the trees for 25 or 100 years (this is called the ‘permanence period’)
  • If you know the following, it’s helpful (but don’t worry if not – we can advise!):
    • What carbon prices you’d like us to model. 
    • Any on-ground costs you’d like us to include in the modelling e.g. fencing. 
    • If you plan on exploring additional options for biodiversity accreditation

So your feasibility study looks good…then what? 

If you’re keen to go ahead with the project, it’s important that you don’t start any project activities until you’ve registered the project with the Clean Energy Regulator. Even if you’ve just started preparing the soil for planting, this could make your project ineligible as it would no longer be seen as ‘new’. 


At this point, you’ll need to decide which parts of the project you can do yourself and which parts you’ll need help with. We have a variety of different service packages and can tailor our approach to fit your individual needs. Our aim is to make sure you’re compliant with the method and achieving great results, while also working with you to keep your costs down. As a fee-for-service organisation, we won’t lock you into a contract and we don’t keep any of your carbon credits. 


Once you’re happy with your service package, we’ll have a kick-off meeting with you and develop a detailed workplan which we’ll report on regularly.  We’ll get your project registered and connect you with a forester who will develop a compliant planting plan. We’ll also help you source seeds, seedlings and consider site preparation/planting contractors to get your trees in the ground


With your project established, we’ll do some final reporting to the Clean Energy Regulator on your behalf and make sure you’re collecting all the information required to monitor and report on your project. 


You’ll be able to start accessing ACCUs from month 6 of your project right through to year 25 and we’ll be with you every step of the way to make sure you’re going to achieve and maintain the required forest cover! 


Ready to find out more?

Explore our range of educational resources in our Carbon Farming Education Hub where we frequently publish educational articles, webinars, and guidebooks. 


When you’re ready to explore the feasibility of undertaking a carbon project on your property, email us at or give us a bell at (08) 6835 1140 to be connected with one of our project facilitators.


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The Carbon Farming Foundation (ABN 67 645 498 004) is a Corporate Authorised Representative (AFS Representative No.001298535) of True Oak Investments Ltd (ABN 81 002 558 956, AFSL 238184).

The information on this website is general financial product advice only. It does not take your personal financial objectives, situation or needs into consideration. We recommend that you read our Financial Services Guide and consider seeking independent advice before making a financial decision.