Counting koalas won’t save national treasure

The Australian Greens MPs

A koala census won’t save our national treasure and a moratorium on the clearing of critical habitat is still urgently needed, the Greens say.

Responding to the Environment Minister’s announcement today of a koala census to identify key habitat, Greens Environment Spokesperson Senator Sarah Hanson-Young said:

“A koala census won’t save our national treasure from the Morrison Government.

“Koalas have been counted in critical habitat areas only for the Government to ignore that data and approve mining and development projects that imperil the koalas calling that land home.

“Just last month, the Environment Minister approved a quarry at Pt Stephens which will destroy 52ha of critical habitat for the endangered species.

“Unless habitat clearing is stopped, koalas will soon be extinct.

“The Greens will move in the Parliament for a moratorium on habitat clearing to save the koala from extinction.

“Off the back of the worst bushfires in history which killed a third of NSW’s koala population and destroyed millions of hectares of habitat across the country, no approvals for developments on koala land should be given.

“The Morrison Government has had seven years to develop a recovery plan for the koala, a census isn’t enough, the species needs real protection under our national environment laws.

“It’s clear the government isn’t serious about saving the koala and cannot be trusted to protect it with or without a census.”

/Public Release. View in full here.