Queensland is in the grip of an extinction crisis. With so much of our wildlife now under threat, we urgently need more well-managed protected areas.
Queensland has more plant and animal species than any other state in Australia. We’re home to 70% of Australia’s mammals, 80% of its birds and more than 50% of its native reptiles, frogs and plant species. In fact, our state is so rich in nature that if it were a country, it would be one of the most species-rich countries in the world. Many of the plants and animals we have here can be found nowhere else on Earth.
The extraordinary diversity of our species and landscapes means we carry an immense responsibility when it comes to nature conservation. But, we’re failing to protect nature and are in the grip of an extinction crisis.
Across Australia, around 1800 animals are threatened with extinction and it’s expected that around 17 are faced with extinction in the next 20 years. Sadly, Queensland has the second highest number in the country – around 955 species - and our Outback has its fair share.
Across our Outback, feral animals and noxious, introduced weeds eat, poison or out-compete native plants and animals at a staggering rate. Uncontrolled wildfires can devastate large areas and cause local extinctions. We know that well-managed protected areas are proven to be one of the best ways to safeguard nature.
The Palaszczuk Government is committed to creating a world leading protected areas network covering 17% of Queensland. But currently, only 8% is protected -- less than any other state.
Funding for new National Parks has fallen by 65%. And funding for Nature Refuges is stretched to breaking point, with landholders receiving on average less than 25 cents per hectare to manage their land.
Tell the Premier to invest in protected areas to save our wildlife and to support people to manage the land. If we are to save the Queensland Outback, we must invest in:
- The Nature Refuges Program to support private landholders to care for their land
- New well-managed National Parks to protect species and create tourism opportunities
- Indigenous Ranger jobs to support people managing country and protecting species