The Flora and Fauna Guarantee Act is the key legislation that protects nature in Victoria. It came into force in 1988 and its main purpose is to ‘guarantee that all native flora and fauna can survive and flourish in the wild’. In reality the Act has not provided any ‘guarantees’. Many of our native plants and animals are in deep trouble with almost a third of land-based species listed as threatened with extinction.
Fortunately the Andrews Government has recognised the problem and is reviewing the Act. A public Consultation Paper has been released on potential reforms, and is open for submissions until 28 March.
It’s a good start, but it’s by no means clear how the proposed reforms are really going to do the job required to protect our precious plants and animals in the long term. Please consider making a submission to help the Government do the best job possible in making our nature laws stronger.
Make sure you include the following five key elements for a reformed Act:
Please also include some details about the place, plant or animal that is important to you and why it needs protection!
To help you with your submission Environmental Justice Australia has prepared a submission guide to what’s good and bad about the Government’s proposals, and what needs to be added.
Submissions can be made through an easy online form, via email, or post.
Submissions close Tuesday 28 March
With over 700 species and ecological communities on the list, the Act has been woefully ineffective in halting the steady decline in precious habitat or in addressing the many threats that affect our native species.
The government’s Consultation Paper recognises the shortcomings of the Act, in particular the failure to plan for climate change and the limited scope of current programs. It intends conservation efforts to focus on the ‘preventative end of biodiversity decline’ so that more species can survive in the long-term and do not become endangered.