Black cockatoo crisis will get worse under WA growth plan

Posted on 18 March 2016
Carnaby's black cockatoo
© Margaret Owen
A WA Government draft plan for growth in the Greater Perth Area is full of holes and fails to protect the state’s endangered black cockatoos.



The draft Perth Peel Green Growth Plan for 3.5 million was released for comment before Christmas but the strategy fails to provide critical information needed for the public to make an informed assessment of the plan.

The draft plan also contains measures that could see half of WA’s endangered black cockatoos wiped out in the Perth and Peel area by destroying thousands of hectares of important roosting and foraging habitat, pushing the species further towards extinction.

“Black cockatoos have lost most of their traditional habitat in the Perth and Peel area and have taken to feeding and roosting in the 23,000 hectare Gnangara Pine Plantation which is a major feeding area but the government’s draft strategy would see this important habitat destroyed,” said WWF-Australia spokesperson Merril Halley.

“The government’s own analysis shows that if the plan to clear the Gnangara Pine Plantation goes ahead, half of the black cockatoos left in the Perth and Peel region will be lost,” she said. 

The draft Perth Peel Green Growth Plan for 3.5 million intends to secure Commonwealth environmental pre-approvals and fast-tracking state environmental approvals for developments designed to support population growth.

It claims to provide “unprecedented protection of our bushland, rivers, wildlife and wetlands" through an environmental protection plan but fails to protect threatened species or to provide critically important information for public review. 

The missing information includes electronic mapping, showing in detail where pre-approved development will occur, and where remnant bushland and other important habitat will be set aside for protection.

A leaked WA Government analysis on the viability of the Carnaby’s black cockatoo in the Perth and Peel region which, according to reports, finds that half of its already declining population would be wiped out under the growth plan, has also not been released in full.

The deadline for public comment on the plan is currently 8 April.

“Given the lack of information available, WWF-Australia is calling on the WA Government to extend the current deadline for submissions, until such time as the missing information is made available to the public,” Ms Halley said.

WWF-Australia Media Contact: Daniel Rockett, National Media Manager, 0432 206 592
Carnaby's black cockatoo
© Margaret Owen Enlarge