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Wildlife toll shows environment needs stronger protections

With a revised tally of killed or displaced wildlife from the summer’s bushfires coming in at three times initial estimates, it’s clear now is not the time to rush through legislation that will weaken environmental protections, the Greens say.

Greens Spokesperson for the Environment Senator Sarah Hanson-Young said with 3 billion native animals killed or displaced as a result of the catastrophic fires, and Australia already holding the dishonour of worst mammalian extinction rate in the world, our wildlife was in crisis and needed urgent protection.

“Off the back of one of the worst environmental disasters our country has seen, the Morrison Government is planning to fast-track legislation that puts our wildlife and environment at further risk.

“I urge the Prime Minister and the Environment Minister to respond to the finding of 3 billion dead or displaced animals and reconsider their environment-destroying plans.

“Our natural world cannot withstand more logging, land clearing and pollution for the sake of corporate profits. The PM needs to stand up for the environment instead of his mining and big developer mates.

“We need strong environmental laws and a cop on the beat to enforce them – anything less and we are going to lose koalas and more of our native animals for good.

“The 10-year independent review should be completed and properly considered before any legislative change that risks killing more of our wildlife and destroying even more of our environment.”

The Senate Inquiry into the Faunal Extinction Crisis, chaired by Senator Hanson-Young, is holding a hearing tomorrow from 12pm EST, to examine the interim report from the review of Australia’s environment laws (the EPBC Act). Witnesses include Independent Reviewer Professor Graeme Samuel and the ANAO. The full program can be found here.

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