Policy and Planning

Our fight for Koalas

In 2004 the Australian Koala Foundation submitted a nomination to the Federal Government to have the Koala listed as vulnerable across its entire natural range. The Government took more than 2 years to come back with a response; that response was no.

Then, in May 2012, after a Senate Inquiry and 12 years of commitment from AKF, the Koala was finally listed as vulnerable under the Environmental Protection and Biodiversity Conservation (EPBC) Act.

Unfortunately this listing has done nothing to stop habitat loss, or further decreases in Koala numbers. The EPBC Act is Australia’s primary environmental legislation, and is failing to protect our environment.

In December 2013 the Department of the Environment released Draft referral Guidelines for the vulnerable Koala (since updated as the EPBC Act referral guidelines for the vulnerable koala). These were intedd to inform industry about what kind of develoments would have a significant impact on Koalas. One element of this was the definition of ‘habitat critical to the survival of the Koala’. With those words, the EPBC Act should be able to protect that land.

But instead, there are a litany of instances where industry is still free to destroy ‘habitat critical to the survival of the Koala.’

If a proposal is going to clear two hectares of land, it does not matter if that two hectares of land is the most important Koala habitat in the country, the EPBC Act will not stop the trees coming down.

Land-clearing is recognized as a threatening process, but it does not trigger the Act… How can that be?

Thus, the Koala Protection Act was created. Learn more about it here.

Join the Koala Army to help fight for Koalas.