The environment is fundamental to everyone and every industry in Australia. The ongoing degradation of our natural environment reveals that current management is not working. It faces many threats and requires adaptive active management to achieve sustainability for future generations. Federal environmental laws need to strike the appropriate balance between responsible usage and preservation. The best way to do this is not by ‘locking it away’ and restricting access in the hope of preservation, but to actively manage our landscape to conserve and enhance biodiversity.
Management of the National Estate: Biodiversity conservation is a shared responsibility between individuals, the community and all outdoor users. It must be maintained along with social and economic activity – the two are not mutually exclusive. Active ‘adaptive management’ must replace the passive ‘lock-it-up-and-leave-it’ approach of the past.
- Ensure that decisions taken by Federal natural resource managers give balanced consideration to environmental, social and economic issues irrespective of the land classification.
- Promote individual and community conservation programs through increased funding and education without locking out recreational users.
- Promote voluntary farm based conservation programs funded by the Commonwealth.
- Support the establishment of marine protected areas only on the basis of sound scientific evidence, not political motivation or green bureaucracy.
- Develop and fund co-ordinated efforts between private and public land managers, including recreational groups, to control invasive species across all land tenures.
- Support the adoption of sustainable use practices in maintaining biological diversity, particularly as it applies to Australia’s commitments under signed international agreements.