In response to the Turnbull Government’s review of the application of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act to agriculture, Australian Conservation Foundation Nature Campaign Manager, Basha Stasak, said:
“Australia’s national environment laws are not balanced, nor are they working to protect nature. Instead they oversee one of the worst species extinction rates in the world and tree clearing in parts of Australia that rivals the loss of the Amazon.
“This review must not be a mere smokescreen to further weaken already weak laws to allow more habitat destruction. It should not toy with the already discredited push to devolve environmental approvals to states, a move Australians have already rejected.
“Farmers are important custodians of our great land. Every day, many farmers care for protected plants and animals, encourage biodiversity and nurture soil health.
“Rather than weaken environment laws, our farmers should be supported by our elected representatives to look after nature. But the Turnbull Government has slashed environment spending by a third since 2013-14.
“Instead of finding new ways to weaken national environment law, we must replace our outdated regime with stronger laws that properly protect nature, secure our clean air and clean water, and ensure independent decision making free from the corrupting influence of big industry.”