Why invest in nature?

We need nature to sustain life – it provides us with clean air to breathe, clean water to drink, soil to grow food, a stable climate and resources to support economies and livelihoods.

However, nature loss is a global issue. In fact, climate change and nature (biodiversity) loss are two sides of the same coin, both caused by overuse of natural resources.

Both require large-scale investment in nature protection and restoration.

The challenge

Investment in the environment is heavily dependent on government funding, which is insufficient and inconsistent. Philanthropic donations are also too small to make a real impact.

On private land current systems (eg. land taxes and other costs) disincentivise landowners to restore nature.

What are biodiversity credits?

Biodiversity credits are market-based schemes that reward and incentivise landowners to restore and protect nature on their private property for the public good. They enable landowners to earn an income from looking after nature while providing businesses and corporations with a mechanism to make a positive contribution.

What are Cassowary Credits?

The Cassowary Credit Scheme is a new biodiversity market scheme developed in Australia’s Wet Tropics region in Far North Queensland to increase investment into rainforest restoration. Funded to date by the Queensland Government and the WWF it is currently being field tested prior to an expected market launch in 2024.

It is a mechanism that enables investors such as governments, philanthropists or corporates to pay landholders and land managers to undertake nature restoration activities such as reinstating, repairing or enhancing rainforest or reducing threats such as weeds.

It targets land that has been cleared historically but is unsuitable for agriculture and it is designed to create economic benefits for regional communities, including First Nations people, and to create biodiversity outcomes.

How does it work? 

Cassowary Credits are earned for a measurable improvement in rainforest condition.

Projects are monitored and payments are based on actual achievements. Investors buy verified improvements and credits are issued when results are delivered and verified.

Read more details about the Cassowary Credit Scheme

biodiversity credits

“My favourite place in the world is North Queensland. It has an amazing rainforest…and down on the coast it has the Great Barrier Reef”

The Wet Tropics 

Cited as the second most irreplaceable location on the planet by the IUCN, the Wet Tropics is home to two adjacent World Heritage Areas – the Wet Tropics Rainforest and the Great Barrier Reef.

Australia’s low population and continental sovereignty and first world status, provide a unique opportunity to test new mechanisms with the potential to be scaled to other countries.

Terrain NRM

Terrain NRM is part of Australia’s network of regional natural resource management organisations. We are an independent not-for-profit, focused on strengthening the resilience of one of the world’s most biodiverse regions.

For 20 years we’ve been leading solutions to our region’s most complex environmental challenges. We combine the latest science with local and traditional knowledge of the landscape and people to co-design and implement programs that deliver not just environmental benefits but also social and economic advantages.


Hunt for stevia (candy leaf)

Hunt for stevia (candy leaf)

Biodiversity Template 1
Have you seen stevia in the Ravenshoe-Herberton region? It's an invasive weed and it's flowering.
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Help for a critically-endangered frog

Help for a critically-endangered frog

Biodiversity Template 1
We've secured funding for a project focused on the mountain-top nursery frog.
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Pond apple survey work

Pond apple survey work

Biodiversity Template 1
The search is on for pond apple in the Murray Upper region, where aerial surveys will begin soon.
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