Several of the Territory’s threatened grasslands and woodlands have been recognised as critically endangered following advice from the ACT Scientific Committee.
Minister for the Environment and Heritage Mick Gentleman said the ACT’s woodlands and grasslands were exceptional in size, connectivity, diversity, condition and habitat for threatened species.
“The Natural Temperate Grassland and the Yellow Box – Blakely’s Red Gum Grassy Woodland provide important habitat for several native and threatened species,” Minister Gentleman said.
“Their transfer to Critically Endangered will help preserve some of Australia’s largest and woodlands and grasslands. It also ensures a nationally consistent list and understanding about threatened ecological communities.
“The ACT is home to the majority of the best Natural Temperate Grassland in south-eastern Australia so protecting our native grasslands is especially important.
“More than 70 per cent of ACT’s 79,000 hectares of woodlands are managed and protected by the ACT Parks and Conservation Service in reserves including the Franklin Grasslands, which we recently listed as a reserve.”
“The ACT Conservator of Flora and Fauna has recently prepared 10-year Action Plans for these ecological communities that provide guidance for the protection, management and restoration of native grasslands and woodlands and their species.
“I would like to thank the ACT Scientific Committee for their advice and assistance on this decision.”
The ACT’s Threatened Ecological Communities List under the Nature Conservation Act 2014 is being aligned with the Commonwealth’s list as part of a national project to align national, state and territory lists with the Commonwealth’s Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (EPBC Act).