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Action Alert - Native Woodlands      
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ACTION ALERT - 14 april 2009

 

Support the protection of Australia's native woodlands

A nomination to list Inland Grey Box Woodlands as an endangered ecological community under the Commonwealth Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act is currently being assessed by the Department of Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts, and the Threatened Species Scientific Committee (TSSC). Following their assessment, the TSSC will be providing Environment Minister Peter Garrett with a recommendation on whether or not the community warrants national protection.

 
As part of these deliberations, the Government is now seeking public comments on the listing of this community, as well as the technical workshop report that was compiled following a meeting of experts regarding the nature and extent of the Inland Grey Box woodlands.

The nomination and technical workshop report can be accessed at: http://www.environment.gov.au/biodiversity/threatened/communities/inland-grey-box-woodland.html

Public comment periods tend to result in an avalanche of submissions from vested interest groups against protecting ecological communities ' “ it is essential that we use this opportunity to show the wealth of public support for conserving our threatened native habitats.

Inland Grey Box Woodlands provide habitat for an abundance of animal species. This includes an astonishing 150 bird species, 88 of which are listed as threatened species either nationally and / or in South Australia, Victoria or NSW. The community is also home to a number of threatened mammals such as the black-striped wallaby, eastern long-eared bat, spotted-tailed quoll and squirrel glider.

Since European settlement, there has been a severe decline in Inland Grey Box Woodlands throughout NSW, Victoria and South Australia. Land-clearing, agricultural development, cropping, and grazing have so devastated the community that in NSW alone, a mere 15% of its original extent is thought to remain, and most of this is heavily fragmented and degraded. Recognising the ongoing threats to this community, particularly in light of its extreme decline, the NSW Scientific Committee made the decision in 2007 to list it as Endangered under the NSW Threatened Species Conservation Act.

Extending across three States, it follows that national protection under the EPBC Act is its best chance for long term recovery and survival.

Further information on the listing of threatened ecological communities under the EPBC Act can be found at: www.environment.gov.au/biodiversity/threatened/communities.html.

Action:

Act by 24th April
 Send your comments in support of the listing of Inland Grey Box Woodlands as an endangered ecological community under the EPBC Act to Mr Matthew White, Director, Ecological Communities Section, Department of Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts, GPO Box 787, Canberra ACT 2601. Comments can also be sent by email to epbc.nominations@environment.gov.au or by fax on (02) 6274 2214. Ask that in addition to the actions listed in the technical report to mitigate the impacts of the threatening processes acting on the community, that remnants of habitat that are essential for its long term recovery and survival are listed on the EPBC Register of Critical Habitat.

Please send us copies of any responses you receive.  Thank you.





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