Campaign to save koala

Koala numbers were plummeting before the black summer bushfires. Photo: Getty Images
Koala numbers were plummeting before the black summer bushfires. Photo: Getty Images

Ausrtralia's Nature Conservation Council has unveiled a plan to save koalas "from the brink of extinction" and double their numbers by 2050.

"Koalas in NSW are on death row," NCC chief executive Chris Gambian said on Tuesday.

"Business as usual is simply no longer an option. This is an emergency that requires drastic action."

Koala numbers were plummeting before the black summer bushfires killed thousands of them and incinerated millions of hectares of forest, Mr Gambian said.

"The Koalas Need Trees policy platform represents the minimum required to ensure koalas don't become this generation's Tasmanian Tiger," he said.

Any credible strategy for the species' long-term future must include a ban on the destruction of koala forests and significant investment in new nature reserves, habitat restoration and ecological research, he said.

"All parties have failed to arrest the decline of this iconic species because they have not taken the bold action required," he said.

"This issue is above politics. It is now time all parties worked together to implement the solutions we need."

The NCC is working with environment groups to convince all political parties to endorse the Koalas Need Trees 15-point policy plan.

The Koalas Need Trees campaign calls for the NSW government to:

• Add 200,000 hectares of koala forest to the national parks estate

• Ban destruction of koala habitat, on public and private land

• Create a $A1 billion ($NZ1.06 billion) koala conservation and restoration fund

• End native forest logging

• Reinstate the State Environmental Planning Policy (Koala Habitat Protection) 2019.


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