Garrett uses Environment laws to protect endangered fish and wetlands
Humane Society International (HSI) congratulates Environment Minister Peter Garrett on his decision to protect the survival of the endangered golden galaxias fish by disallowing the removal of 3,300 million litres of water from Tasmania’s Lake Crescent.
A decision on the project’s approval under the Commonwealth Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation (EPBC) Act 1999 required consideration of its impact on the endangered species and internationally important wetlands. Golden galaxias are found nowhere else in Australia, and Mr Garrett determined that the release of this volume of water would so deplete Lake Crescent that it would have serious long-term impacts on the species’ breeding success.
“This is a clear case of the EPBC Act being used as it was originally intended,” said Michael Kennedy, HSI’s Director. “Too often since its inception endangered species and habitats have been the poor relation to development proposals. We are hopeful that Mr Garrett’s decision on this occasion to protect an endangered species and its habitat signals a shift under a federal Labor Government to take the legislation seriously, and truly consider matters of national environmental significance for all approvals, as the legislation requires.”
HSI is looking forward to working with the government on the review and substantive reform of the EPBC Act foreshadowed in the Government’s pre-election commitments.