Koala populations across New South Wales are under increasing pressure and are declining despite a wide range of conservation initiatives, including protections through legislation, recovery programs and various community efforts.
This land purchase initiative will assist in the long-term conservation of the koala.
How much money is available to purchase land for koalas?
The NSW Government has allocated $20 million to purchase and permanently conserve land in the national parks system that contains priority koala habitat.
Expressions of Interest open for koala land purchase
The NSW Government is seeking Expressions of Interest (EOI) from landowners to sell land to the Office of Environment and Heritage which has priority koala habitat.
The project is part of the NSW Koala Strategy and is supported by funding from the NSW Environmental Trust.
These 4 areas were identified using the best available science and in close consultation with key koala conservation experts. They were further refined into Koala Priority Localities – areas where we are most likely to find land for potential purchase which would be valuable in securing the viability of key koala populations. These koala priority localities will be used to prioritise land purchase offers. The koala priority localities are based on existing National Parks and Wildlife Service reserves forming the core areas for koala land purchases to build on and link with.
Koala priority localities
The criteria used to determine the koala priority localities include:
- clusters of koala hubs which are site-based areas that contain multi-generational resident koala populations
- proximity to existing reserves
- areas with key wildlife and climate change corridors
- land that satisfies the wider considerations of the koala land purchase program.
The EOI process will run for an initial period of 6 weeks from Monday October 22 2018 to 6 December 2018.
What is priority koala habitat?
Office of Environment and Heritage is currently analysing the best available information on koalas to identify the areas within the NSW landscape which are most strategic for koala conservation.
As a generalisation, for a property to be considered a high priority for purchase for koalas, it may contain koala habitat, evidence of use by koalas, be well-connected to surrounding vegetation or enable better management of threats to koalas in that location. In addition, the property must also be suitable for addition within the national parks system.