The call to action to address Australia’s extinction crisis has never been louder. AWC is responding by scaling up our conservation efforts, investing in science, innovating and establishing new collaborative partnerships to better protect Australia’s unique biodiversity.
For two of Australia’s most endangered mammals, partnerships offer a beacon of hope, which is why I am also pleased to announce a new collaboration with the Queensland Department of Environment and Science to protect the critically endangered Northern Hairy-nosed Wombat, of which just 315 individuals survive in the wild. Additionally, AWC is collaborating with Western Yalanji Aboriginal Corporation and Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service to monitor one of only two remaining populations of Northern Bettong.
This is an important year for AWC, not only because of these additional collaborations and impressive achievements accomplished by the team. This year AWC is celebrating thirty years of effective conservation – August 2021 marked three decades since AWC Founder, Martin Copley AM, purchased Karakamia Wildlife Sanctuary. Highlights that spring to mind during my tenure at AWC include constructing the feral predator-proof fence at Mt Gibson in Western Australia’s Wheatbelt, witnessing the vast wilderness of Kalamurina on the northern shores of Kati Thanda–Lake Eyre, and the pristine coastline of Pungalina–Seven Emu in the remote Gulf of Carpentaria. It’s a privilege to be part of the AWC story and I feel very proud to announce AWC’s anniversary book in this edition of Wildlife Matters.
Looking to the future, AWC is sharpening its focus, refining our model and using every tool at our disposal to generate better outcomes for Australia’s biodiversity. We are actively pursuing exciting new partnerships in the pastoral sector and I look forward to reporting more on this very soon. In addition, we are exploring alternative finance models to support our conservation efforts, such as biodiversity impact bonds, impact investing and biodiversity credit schemes. Technological innovations provide opportunities to gain efficiencies in the field. Crucially, AWC’s investment in science continues to inform our approach, enabling us to deliver dividends for biodiversity and to influence legislative and regulatory reforms for conservation.
Of course, AWC’s past and future achievements are only made possible with the help, commitment and dedication of our supporters, staff, volunteers and partners. I hope you feel as proud of AWC – and as inspired about the future – as I do.
On behalf of the AWC team across the country, best wishes for the festive season and thank you for your generous support.
PS: If you are looking for a gift idea that offers hope – and will arrive on time this Christmas – please consider making an online donation to AWC and sending a personalised eCard to a friend or loved one.
Read and download the full issue of Wildlife Matters here.