Anglesea roundabout gets a facelift


More than 90 eucalyptus and wattle trees have been planted on the Forest Road nature strip near the Anglesea/Winchelsea roundabout to offset the installation of the roundabout. Read more

Invasive orchids get the boot


Jan Juc Coast Action (JJCA) faced an unusual task during their last working bee for 2015 – finding and removing the tenacious South African orchid Disa bractreata.

The highly invasive orchid species first appeared in Victoria in the mid-1990s after being introduced in Western Australia in 1946. Read more

Curl crew helps planet


Rip Curl employees have teamed up land managers to conduct conservation work along the local coast as part of the annual Rip Curl Planet Day.

Each year the Rip Curl staff from the Torquay Head Office donate one working day to environmental volunteering, working with the Great Ocean Road Coast Committee (GORCC), the Surf Coast Shire, Parks Victoria, and local volunteer groups.

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Rip Curl team members braved the 33 degree day to plant hundreds of indigenous flora at Cosy Corner this Planet Day.

The annual event has seen over 85,000 indigenous Surf Coast plants planted along coastal reserves stretching from Point Impossible through to Bells Beach/Southside.

Rip Curl Team Event and Promotions Manager Mark Flanagan said the day was important to the Rip Curl staff as it provides the opportunity for them to give back to their community.

“The majority of our Torquay staff live on or near the Surf Coast and use the local areas.

“It’s a great feeling for the Rip Curl team to be able to walk past and see the progress of the areas they worked on over the years,” he said.

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Rip Curl team members partnered with the GORCC conservation team to re-vegetate the popular beach destination.

Mr Flanagan said one of Rip Curl’s core values is to be environmentally responsible with Planet Day providing the opportunity for staff members to actively contribute to their local environment.

“Planet Day is a fantastic way to support the team of dedicated land managers and volunteers who spend hundreds of hours every year to make the coast a better place,” Mr Flanagan said.

Rip Curl CEO and Planet Day participant Stephen Kay said he enjoys seeing the results from the Rip Curl staff.

“We value the opportunity to contribute to the local environment and are committed to the future of the program,” he said.

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The team takes a break from the sweltering heat this Planet Day.

Staff are divided into various groups over the two days to complete environmental activities such as indigenous tree planting, eradicating environmental weeds, removing rubbish and implementing water saving strategies.

Long-time Rip Curl team member Dianne McCall has participated in Planet Day every year since it began in 2000, and loves seeing the difference the work has made.

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More than 600 indigenous plants were re-introduced to the Cosy Corner foreshore.

“The day is a great opportunity to socialise and work with people who you wouldn’t normally see in the office whilst also having a positive impact on the coast,” she said.

Local environmental volunteer groups and land managers work to ensure that progress made by the Rip Curl crew is maintained through ongoing conservation works and programs throughout the year.

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Cosy Corner was one of many Torquay areas to receive an environmental make over thanks to the Rip Curl staff this Planet Day.



Rip Curl has a strong determination to be environmentally responsible and encourages everyone to demonstrate environmental stewardship. What are some of the things you do to protect our coast? Let us know in the comments below. 

Teamwork trumps weeds


Lorne volunteer groups are combining to tackle invasive weeds as part of an annual effort to conserve local parklands, while encouraging others to take small, environmentally-aware actions every day.

Friends of Queens Park (FoQP) and LorneCare will conduct three intensive working bees between August and October, joining together to overcome weeds in popular local destination Queens Park.

FoQP Chairman John Wilson said that while weed removal was a priority and essential to protecting and enhancing biodiversity, the group was also focussing on educating others.

“Removal of garden escapees such as boneseed, cape broom and sweet pittosporum is an important part of creating a sustainable coastal environment, however weed removal is not the only focus for environmental volunteers.

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FoQP Chairman John Wilson explains the various weeds FoQP and LorneCare are targeting in the area to volunteers. He is pictured here with the environmental weed, Sweet Pittosporum. Photo: Ferne Millen

“FoQP is trying to let people know that conservation extends beyond weed control, and that the real meaning of conservation is about making environmentally conscious choices in our everyday living,” he said.

LorneCare Co-founder and Co-convener Alain Purnell said the personal satisfaction of being involved in local conservation is one of the most rewarding elements of volunteering.

“Working along the coast and in Queens Park, we continually see the progress our groups have made,” he said.

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Volunteers of all ages participate in the local working bees, helping locals raise environmental awareness in the community. Photo: Ferne Millen

While environmental volunteering often involves hands-on conservation, Mr Purnell said it was the social aspect and sense of satisfaction that motivated volunteers to continue their involvement.

“These types of groups are a great way to meet new people in the community, whether they are local residents or seasonal holidaymakers.

“Volunteering is a great excuse to catch up with friends and have a barbeque to celebrate our achievements for the day,” Mr Purnell said.

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Picturesque views along the coast provide a wonderful backdrop for volunteers and visitors. Photo: Ferne Millen

The Great Ocean Road Coast Committee (GORCC) works alongside and supports volunteers in their environmental efforts.

GORCC Conservation Supervisor Georgie Beale praised the ongoing dedication of volunteer groups operating along the Great Ocean Road.

“Our local volunteers do a fantastic job along our coast and their ongoing support of our conservation efforts is unparalleled.

“It is everyone’s responsibility to help protect our precious coast.

Simple actions such as staying on designated walking tracks, removing environmental weeds from your garden and avoiding fenced off areas make a real difference in the preservation of fragile ecosystems,” she said.

Queens Park is a popular recreational destination consisting of over 40ha of parkland and is home to the recently rebuilt Teddy’s Lookout.

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Volunteers and the Great Ocean Road Coast Committee work hard to keep the environmental weeds out of areas like the iconic Teddy’s Lookout. Photo: Ferne Millen

FoQP and LorneCare’s next working bee will be held at Teddy’s Lookout at 10am Sunday 18th October and new volunteers are always welcome.  For more information about FoQP, LorneCare, or your local community group visit our website. 

Conservation is more than just weed eradication. Share what conservation means to you in the comments below.