AWC Chief Executive, Tim Allard, is at Parliament House today participating in the Environment Minister’s bushfire response roundtable which is thrashing out emergency interventions to effectively protect and restore wildlife impacted by the recent catastrophic bushfires.
AWC is part of a panel alongside experts including Dr John Woinarski, CSIRO, the Academy of Science, the Bushfire and Natural Hazards CRC, TNC, Greening Australia, Conservation volunteers, Taronga Zoo, Zoos South Australia, Zoos Victoria and others that are providing advice to the Government.
AWC protects (alone or in partnership) 6.5 million hectares of exceptional conservation land – home to some of Australia’s most threatened species, like the Bilby, the Numbat and the Gouldian Finch. AWC’s sanctuaries have not been impacted by the recent bushfires and continue to play a vital role in protecting endangered wildlife populations.
The Australian Federal Government this week announced an initial $50 million investment to protect and restore wildlife and habitats that have been devastated by the bushfires. This is a crucially important step towards an on-going, collaborative commitment to secure the future of Australia’s biodiversity. You can read the Australian Federal Government’s official January 13 2020 press release here: Federal Government Announces $50 Million for Emergency Wildlife and Habitat Recovery.
We express our heartfelt sympathy to all those affected by the catastrophic bushfires impacting Australia – including some of our wonderful supporters, volunteers and families of AWC staff. Our thoughts are with you.
We also wish to express our admiration for the incredible bravery and selflessness that has been demonstrated by firefighters, volunteers and communities impacted by these fires.
This is a challenging time for the thousands of individuals who have been affected, as well as the pets and farm animals that have suffered and the native wildlife that is now struggling to survive.
The true extent of the damage to Australia’s unique biodiversity is not yet known but current estimates indicate that more than 500 million native animals may have perished.
AWC is working to support various organisations to help save threatened wildlife affected by these fires however the situation remains extremely dynamic. We stand ready to help wherever we can and we will update you again soon on our progress.
We thank you all for your messages of support, care and interest. We can assure all of our supporters that, thankfully, none of AWC’s properties have been impacted by these fires, though our team in the field remain on alert to ensure all AWC’s sanctuaries remain protected and continue to provide a safe haven for Australia’s threatened wildlife.
Our work to protect Australia’s wildlife is now more urgent than ever and we thank you again for your support.