Tell Minister for the Environment, Lily D’Amrosio,
that the government should be ashamed
Subject: Illegal clearing, government failure
The illegal clearing of almost 40 hectares of native vegetation at Conservation Area 9 is another example of the government’s failure to protect our critically endangered grasslands.
The 36 Conservation Areas set up by the 2013 Biodiversity Conservation Strategy include the best biodiversity hotspots across the 60,000 hectares of Melbourne’s growth corridors. Nine years later, most of the Conservation Areas have not been purchased and almost all are in ecological decline because of mismanagement and the absence of oversight by DELWP. Many lack basic planning protections such as Environmental Significance Overlays and conservation zoning.
This is despite the highly critical 2020 report from the Victorian Auditor-Generals’ Office, and the findings of the parliamentary Inquiry into Ecosystem Decline.
Your government should be ashamed.
We ask you to:
- Immediately reveal the results of the investigations being undertaken by the City of Melton, DELWP and Federal authorities
- Ensure that the landholder cannot profit from this clearing
- Front-up funding to purchase or lease for conservation these biodiversity hotspots
- Immediately ensure strong planning protections are in place across all the Conservation Areas
- Ensure strict management plans are in place – as soon as possible – to protect these precious remnants
- Liaise with Federal authorities to make sure the CALP Act is used to prevent weeds of national significance from overrunning our biodiversity
- Establish strong future tenures for the Conservation Areas
High-quality patches of grassland like that at Conservation Area 9 are so rare now we cannot afford to lose any more. The clearing was illegal, but your government’s failures make you equally culpable.
Save our grasslands now.