Fri. May 31st, 2024

Dire warning: How this state could lose hundreds of species within 100 years

Tyler Mitchell By Tyler Mitchell May26,2024
Key Points
  • NSW could lose around 500 species within 100 years, a new report has warned.
  • Nature is struggling to survive habitat loss and climate change, the report found.
  • Environment Minister Penny Sharpe says her government is trying to turn things around.
NSW could lose roughly 500 species within 100 years as nature struggles to survive escalating threats including habitat loss and climate change.
The state government’s latest biodiversity report makes for sobering reading and reflects the alarming environmental decline occurring across Australia.
It says biodiversity continues to fall across NSW on almost every measure, with damaged and degraded landscapes less able to support plant and animal life.

The primary threat is habitat loss but nature is also suffering the effects of a growing and accelerating list of menaces, including a warming climate and the enormous collective toll taken by almost 340 invasive species.

The report warns that without intervention, 50 per cent of the state’s 1,000 or so listed threatened species — some 500 plants and animals — could follow the thylacine (commonly known as the Tasmanian tiger) into extinction within a century.

The capacity of habitat to support native species declined to 29 per cent in 2020, the report found.

Native vegetation continues to be cleared in a landscape that recently lost so much to the Black Summer bushfires, with more of the same expected as the climate changes.

The clearing of woody vegetation was higher from 2016 to 2021, compared to 2009 to 2015.

A group of protesters on a road holding up signs.

Protesters stage a blockade at the headquarters of the Forestry Corporation of NSW demanding an end to logging in native forests. Source: AAP / Luca Lamont

Much of the clearing has been for agriculture.

Clearing for native forestry has declined each year since 2016, decreasing by about a third between 2020 and 2021.
There was some good news to balance the plentiful bad: the area of land permanently secured for conservation has grown to 11 per cent of the state, and various programs to protect certain species, and deal with feral pests, are having some success.
Environment Minister Penny Sharpe says the decline is worrying but her government is trying to turn things around.
“We are committed to fixing biodiversity offsets and stopping runaway land clearing. We have adopted a whole-of-government approach to tackling climate change and we have boosted environmental protections to their strongest level yet,” she said in a statement.

The report covers the period from 2007 to 2023 and projections don’t include the potential impacts of interventions, like the Saving Our Species program.

Tyler Mitchell

By Tyler Mitchell

Tyler is a renowned journalist with years of experience covering a wide range of topics including politics, entertainment, and technology. His insightful analysis and compelling storytelling have made him a trusted source for breaking news and expert commentary.

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2 thoughts on “Dire warning: How this state could lose hundreds of species within 100 years”
  1. It is devastating to hear that NSW could lose around 500 species within a century due to habitat loss and climate change. We must take urgent action to protect our precious biodiversity before it’s too late.

  2. If urgent action is not taken to address habitat loss and climate change, we could witness the tragic loss of around 500 species in NSW within the next 100 years. It’s disheartening to see the ongoing decline in biodiversity, and it’s imperative that we prioritize conservation efforts to protect our precious wildlife.

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