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NPAACT Home > News Items > Wildlife corridor planned for east coast

Wildlife corridor planned for east coast

24-February-2007

SMH Saturday Feb 24 11:02 AEDT
The corridor will stretch from the Victorian Alps through to Atherton in Queensland and will be among the longest in the world. (AAP)
State and federal governments will establish a 2,800km nature corridor along most of the east coast of Australia, allowing wildlife to move as climate changes.

The governments, led by NSW, agree that the plan is one of the nation's highest environmental priorities this year, The Sydney Morning Herald reports.

The link will stretch from the Victorian Alps through to Atherton in Queensland and will include existing national parks, state forests and other Crown land, and will be among the longest in the world.

The Alps-to-Atherton wildlife corridor will be like a terrestrial version of the Great Barrier Reef - only longer, said Ian Pulsford, who wrote a discussion paper on the corridor and is the NSW government's manager for conservation on private land program.

There will be no compulsory acquisitions. Instead, private landholders will be encouraged to undertake land care works and sign voluntary conservation agreements.

Outgoing NSW Environment Minister Bob Debus will announce first-stage funding of $7 million in incentives to private landowners to restore and maintain land along the Great Eastern Ranges corridor, the newspaper says.

"We have to create, protect and restore ecological corridors that will allow species to move, and to find new areas of sanctuary," Mr Debus said.

The corridor is currently broken by hundreds, if not thousands, of private properties.

Nearly two-thirds of NSW's threatened species are found along the land the corridor will encompass, but many will be stranded as the climate changes. The corridor will also improve the management of the Murray-Darling river basin.

The Australian Bush Heritage Fund will announce the acquisition of Scottsdale as the first property identified as part of the corridor, the newspaper says.

Scottsdale is 1,300ha south of Canberra at Bredbo, taking in critical platypus and native fish habitat in the Murrumbidgee River, vast native grasslands, dry sclerophyll forest and numerous endangered species.

 

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