The Greens’ wildlife policy, announced today on World Environment Day, would strengthen and nurture our country’s unique biodiversity, the Australian Conservation Foundation said today in welcoming the plan.

“In Australia we are fortunate to have some of the most incredible wildlife on the planet,” said ACF campaigns director Paul Sinclair.

“Sadly, many species are under threat because of bad decisions by governments and big polluting industries – Adani’s attempt to dig Australia’s biggest coal mine in one of the last remaining habitats of the endangered black-throated finch is just one sad example.

“ACF strongly supports the two key elements of the package announced today – the $130 million threatened species plan and $2 billion for a reinvigorated Biodiversity Fund.

“Mapping and protecting critical habitats, as proposed in the Greens’ threatened species plan, is missing from current government policy, but it is desperately needed if we are to tackle Australia’s extinction crisis.

“More than 1,000 of ACF’s supporters recently called on the Victorian and federal governments to make an emergency intervention to protect habitat for the critically endangered Leadbeater’s Possum.

“The Coalition’s Threatened Species Recovery Fund, also announced today, is welcome.

“It will help protect the Southern Cassowary, Gilbert’s Potoroo, the Eastern Barred Bandicoot and other species currently in trouble.

“Funding is needed to implement national recovery plans. While the $5 million initial investment from the Coalition is welcome, it falls short of the $200 million experts estimate is needed to effectively protect and restore threatened species populations.

“The Greens’ plan to re-establish and commit $2 billion to the Biodiversity Fund, which aims to preserve biodiversity while retaining carbon in the landscape, is also welcome.

“The previous federal Biodiversity Fund was underpinned by a National Wildlife Corridors Plan that had connectivity conservation at the centre of environmental program design,” Dr Sinclair said.

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