Currawinya National Park in Queensland, Australia will double in size after the Queensland government added three adjoining blocks to the park helping the rare species which live there survive as global warming takes hold.
Species such as the bilby, bettongs, wallabies and wombats will be helped through the expansion of the park. It is an important site for the conservation of bilbies.
WWF Australia National species Manager Darren Grover said it is not enough though and encouraged the” Queensland Government to gazette another twelve properties purchased through the Commonwealth National Reserve System program as soon as possible to secure a future for our threatened bilbies, bettongs, wallabies and wombats.”
New national parks and wildlife refuges should be acquired to continue the climate change resilience program in Queensland.
“Transferring suitable state forests and leasehold land to national parks should be restarted immediately after being halted in 2012.”
“Already we are seeing the impacts of global warming on Australian ecosystems due to increased temperatures, decreased rainfall and more frequent and intense bushfires.”
“The good news is that it would only take a relatively small investment in protected areas to provide huge biodiversity and tourism benefits for Queensland,” he added.
Increased spending on national parks in Queensland would not just help save species but also stop soil erosion which is damaging the Great Barrier Reef and increase spending on tourism by $180 million a year.
2.4% of Queensland could become national parks by gazetting those which have already been purchased, transferring state forest to national park s and securing properties currently used as climate refuges to be national parks.
While it would cost $15 million per year over years it would be able to increase new tourism spends to $850 million a year representing a 27% increase.
Photo Credit: By Kevin503 (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons