native to arid Australia
Sturt's Desert Pea native to arid Australia © Tracy Carboon/KJ

How We Work

Our awards

Recognition for conservation efforts

While most of our efforts go towards projects in the field to conserve nature, it’s nice to be recognised occasionally for this hard work. The extra attention this brings helps us to spread our message of nature conservation within the community. And the occasional prize money is always welcome to further our mission. Here are some of the awards we’ve recently received:

Our metropolitan urban forest
Living Melbourne Our metropolitan urban forest © TNC

2019 AILA Victoria President's Award

Our urban forest strategy – Living Melbourne: Our metropolitan urban forest, developed by The Nature Conservancy and Resilient Melbourne – was awarded the 2019 Australian Institute of Landscape Architects’ President’s Award. The award recognises the positive impact on Australian lives through the planning and design of built and natural environments.

Oyster reef restoration in Australia
Reef Team Oyster reef restoration in Australia © Ainita Nedosyko/TNC

2018 Project Merit: Environmental Restoration

Our Windara Reef shellfish restoration project in South Australia was recognised for its merit in the 2018 Environmental Business International, Business Achievement Awards through the work of engineering partner Jacobs. 

making use of the new Windara Reef May 2018
Leatherjackets making use of the new Windara Reef May 2018 © Anita Nedosyko/TNC

FINALIST 2018 South Australian Science Excellence Awards

Excellence in Research Collaboration - for Windara Reef where a significant benefit is being delivered between researchers and users of research leading to economic, social or environmental benefits for South Australia. 

to rebuild oyster reefs
Recycled Shell Deployment to rebuild oyster reefs © Simon Branigan


Our project to Restore the Lost Shellfish Reefs of Port Phillip Bay was named as a finalist in the ‘Biodiversity Conservation’ category of the 2018 Victorian Coastal Awards and in the 2018 Society for Ecological Restoration Australasia (SERA) Award for Restoration Excellence.

Simon Branigan (left) accepts the award for TNC

WINNER 2017 Victorian Premier’s Sustainability Awards: Community Category – Shuck Don’t Chuck

The first of its kind in Australia, Shuck Don’t Chuck is a recycling program that helps to regenerate shellfish reefs with leftover oyster shells collected from local seafood restaurants and suppliers.

The program was pioneered in the US and, in Australia, The Nature Conservancy is importing this international know-how and tailoring it to local conditions through work with scientists, aquaculture farmers, seafood outlets and wholesalers.

Shells are quarantined and cured for six months then reused as new oyster and mussel reef habitat, diverting that waste from landfill in the short term and creating a healthier bay with improved water quality and habitat. Learn more.

for TNC's Murray-Darling Basin Balanced Water Fund
Banksia Natural Capital Award for TNC's Murray-Darling Basin Balanced Water Fund © Mark Baxter

WINNER 2017 Banksia Sustainability Awards: Natural Capital Category – Murray-Darling Basin Balanced Water Fund

The Murray-Darling Basin Balanced Water Fund provides water security for farmers while protecting culturally significant wetlands that support threatened species and ecosystems. It invests in permanent water rights in the southern Murray-Darling Basin and allocates those rights in a smart way. It’s a win-win approach, aligning the interests of people and nature. Learn more.

Fish caught by the fishermen on Tetap Setia, a boat participating in TNC's FishFace program, are photographed on a measuring board in Indonesia
FishFace Fish caught by the fishermen on Tetap Setia, a boat participating in TNC's FishFace program, are photographed on a measuring board in Indonesia © Ed Wray

WINNER 2016 Google Impact Challenge: Australia – FishFace

On 26th October 2016 our FishFace project was announced winner in the popular vote for the 2016 Google Impact Challenge: Australia.

This provided us with $750,000 to develop our game-changing technology that will protect global fish stocks, the livelihoods of coastal communities and provide a sustainable food source for billions of people.

Tens of thousands of people from all over the world voted for FishFace which got us across the line and we thank everyone for their support and interest in creating sustainable fisheries for people and nature.