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End animal extinction

We need stronger federal laws to stop our nature from being erased. Take action now.

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Together, we can turn the tide on Australia’s extinction crisis

BREAKING NEWS: The government has rejected the EPBC Act review’s recommendation to strengthen our nature laws through the creation of an ‘independent cop’.

 

Act now, before it’s all gone. We don’t have a moment to lose.

We need our local politicians to urge the federal government to improve the laws that are meant to protect our wildlife and their homes. Will you ask your local politician to stand with us?

Australia has the worst mammal extinction rate of any country in the world, and the bushfires of summer 2019-20 have only made it much worse. Over 12 million hectares of vital bushland and habitat were destroyed in the fires that swept across our country and nearly 3 billion animals impacted by the blazes.


But we have a once-in-10-year opportunity to turn things around for our struggling Aussie wildlife.

Right now, the Australian Government is reviewing our nature laws - The Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation (EPBC) Act 1999.

The review’s interim report has stated that our laws are currently failing our wildlife and their homes. The review recommended the creation of an ‘independent cop’ to ensure Australia’s flagship environment laws are properly enforced; however the government has rejected this recommendation. 

 

This matters, because in 13 years, 1 million hectares of likely or know threatened species habitat was destroyed for agriculture development without authorisation in Queensland and New South Wales.

 

It’s clear the government needs to do more – much more - to protect our wildlife and the places we love before we lose more of our precious animals forever.

We urgently need to send a strong message to our leaders calling on them to support the review’s recommendation for an independent agency to ensure every Australian, business and industry is doing the right thing for nature. Send a message to your local politician to help end Australia’s wildlife extinction crisis before it’s too late.

 

WWF-Australia is working with the Australian Conservation Foundation, The Wilderness Society, Birdlife and Humane Society International to stop the roll-back of Australia’s environment laws. Together we are taking a stand for wildlife and the places we love before it’s all gone.


There's more to this story

Read more about Australia’s precious wildlife and how we’re working towards zero wildlife extinction.


Close up of koala joey with mother © David Clode / Unsplash

Australia’s Nature Laws


Australia’s nature laws are better known as the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation (EPBC) Act 1999. It is the country’s environmental legislation. It’s purpose is to protect and conserve our environment and biodiversity including threatened wildlife, critical habitats and special places, like the Great Barrier Reef and Uluru.

Here’s just one example why it’s so important we seize this opportunity to make these laws better. The EPBC Act is supposed to protect the homes and habitats of our most threatened species, but in the 20 years since the laws were passed more than 7.7 million hectares of threatened species habitat has been destroyed – that’s an area bigger than the whole of Tasmania.

Our environmental laws are failing to protect our wildlife and the places we love.

Urgent change is needed before it’s too late.
Greater glider in a patch of old growth forest in Munruben, Logan City, south of Brisbane © Josh Bowell

Australia’s unique wildlife

Australia is home to an incredible diversity of wildlife that is found nowhere else on the planet. Over 30 million years of geographical isolation has created fascinating animals that are unique to our vast continent.

 

But now, more than 1,800 species of plant, animal and ecological communities are officially listed as threatened. This includes 517 species of wildlife.

 

Our iconic animals like the koala, black-flanked rock-wallaby and hairy-nosed wombat are currently under threat. And it’s not just our mammals and unique marsupials at risk.

 

Countless rare birds, like the regent honeyeater and swift parrot, are also on the brink. As are some of our most fascinating reptiles and frogs, like the beautiful green and golden bell frog, and all could soon be gone forever if we don’t act now.

Impact of bushfires on threatened species

From ancient rainforests, towering coastal forests, to the Australian alps and beyond, our wild places are home to our most threatened wildlife.

 

But tragically, over 300 threatened species have been affected by the worst bushfire season in living memory, with their habitats in the fire zones severely impacted.

 

We now know that as many as 10,000 koalas may have perished in the NSW fires. And more than half the population of the long-footed potoroo, rufous scrub-bird and southern barred frog have been put at risk from this one bushfire season.

 

On Kangaroo Island alone, up to 80% of the Island’s glossy black cockatoo, echidna and dunnart populations have felt the force of the fires. Even before the bushfires, the dunnart was already at risk of disappearing in the next decade.

 

Now more than ever, our threatened wildlife urgently needs our help to survive.

A Tammar wallaby skull found in Lathami Conservation Park after bushfires swept through the area, Kangaroo Island, 2020 © WWF-Aus / Paul Fahy

 

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