Another Baillieu backflip - this time on the bandicoot
Once again, the Bailleu Government has backflipped on environmental protection of a threatened Victorian species. This time it is the endangered Southern Brown Bandicoot.
It now appears to want to scrap vital habitat corridors for the endangered Southern Brown Bandicoot.
These crucial habit corridors in Melbourne's rapidly expanding southeast region were developed under national environmental laws.
Our state government is obligated under a joint federal and state agreement to develop strategies that will protect threatened species.
But it seems the Baillieu Government won't let a threatened species stand in the way of new houses.
Nationally threatened species such as the Southern Brown Bandicoot, Growling Grass Frog and the critically endangered Golden Sun Moth should be protected before final urban growth plans are released. But this hasn't happened.
The agreement between the Commonwealth and Victoria states that plans to protect threatened species must be approved and released ahead of urban growth plans.
But our state government has decided to short-circuit the process.
Once more, the environmental component of growth planning in Victoria is a shambles, and the Southern Brown Bandicoot shows the credibility of the entire planning and environmental approval process is in doubt.
What we want and how you can help
The Victorian National Parks Association calls on the Baillieu Government to:
- Ensure there are adequate conservation reserves, corridors, buffer zones for threatened species such as the Southern Brown Bandicoot, Growling Grass Frog, and Golden Sun Moth, and critically endangered grasslands and woodland.
- Immediately release all of the threatened species strategies it has developed as part of the strategic assessment of Melbourne, before approval of any further urban development areas.
You can help by writing to Premier Ted Baillieu detailing these concerns.
We also call on federal minister Tony Burke to ensure that:
- The Victorian government undertakes community consultation and independent scientific input on threatened species plans for Melbourne's urban growth areas.
- The Victorian Government provides detailed implementation plans and that the plans are in place for western grassland reserves, woodland reserves and frog and bandicoot habitat corridors.
- The Federal Government immediately appoints an independent environmental monitor to assess state government plans and implementation procedures.
Join us and send federal environment minister Tony Burke an email today.
- Southeast Melbourne and the Westernport region are home to some of the few remaining populations of Victoria's endangered Southern Brown Bandicoots outside of national parks.
- The habitat corridors planned for Melbourne's southeast were an ideal opportunity to maintain a wild population of Southern Brown Bandicoots on the city's urban doorstep.
- Two to three habitat corridors had been proposed in the draft Southern Brown Bandicoots Sub Regional Species Strategy. For more detail see the VNPA's submission on these plans.
For more information on how Melbourne's urban sprawl is impacting on some of the most endangered habitats and species in Victoria please see the VNPA report 'Melbourne's Urban Expansion - Threatened Species on Our Doorstep'.
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