The theme for this year’s International Day of Forests (21 March) is ‘forests and health’. It provides an opportunity to reflect on the important role that forests play in our lives and whether our national environmental laws, which are currently under review, are doing enough to ensure that future generations...
Federal Environment Minister, Sussan Ley MP, will today make public the interim report received from Professor Graeme Samuel on his review of Australia’s federal environmental legislation in a media conference at 12pm at Parliament House.
The much anticipated interim report is a milestone in the statutory independent review of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (EPBC Act) which turned twenty years old on the 16th July. Humane Society International expects the report to build a case for reform with a final report due in October.
Humane Society International (HSI) will work quickly to analyse the interim report and the Government’s response to the report, and will be available for comment.
We hope Professor Samuel’s report will highlight the need for much stronger laws to turn around the extinction crisis facing Australia.
Among improvements HSI is calling for are:
- stronger protective measures, for example robust protection and recovery measures for species, critical habitats and ecosystems;
- enhanced national leadership with improved coordination but no devolution of responsibility for Matters of National Environmental Significance;
- independent institutions and decision making frameworks that can be trusted to place science and long term public good over short term political interests;
- meaningful community participation including the ability to challenge poor decision making; and
- significant additional investment capable of properly protecting and recovering nature.
Nicola Beynon is HSI Australia’s Head of Campaigns and was one of a small team of conservationists who helped negotiate passage of the EPBC Act through Parliament in 1999 and has worked closely with the legislation ever since.
Alexia Wellbelove is HSI Australia’s Senior Campaign Manager who has worked closely with the legislation since 2009 and was a co-founder of the Places You Love alliance in 2012 following threats posed then to devolve approval powers to states and territories under the Act.
Both Nicola and Alexia have managed several court cases for HSI seeking compliance with the EPBC Act, as well as having been responsible for nominating numerous threatened species for listing under the Act and been members of their recovery teams.