Queensland Biodiversity Hotspot Protected For The Future

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16th July 2010, 01:02pm - Views: 781





Conservation Environment Ecofund Queensland 1 image

Conservation Environment Ecofund Queensland 2 image


16 July 2010



MEDIA RELEASE



Queensland biodiversity hotspot protected for the future 


The first green offset by State owned environmental offset provider, Ecofund

Queensland, has been approved by the Australian Government for one of Australia’s

largest independent coal producers, Wesfarmers Curragh.


Wesfarmers Curragh engaged Ecofund to deliver an offset site and management

plan to counterbalance the impact of the Blackwater Creek Diversion and Coal Mine

Project. 


Ecofund’s Group

Manager of Land Based Offsets, Darren Grover said, “The

approved green offset will protect an endangered ecosystem and will see 765

hectares in area, consisting of 643 hectares of high value Brigalow ecological

community, added to Queensland’s protected natural areas tally.”  


“The site is located in the Northern Brigalow Belt region at Mt Flora, near Nebo in

central Queensland and is adjacent to Dipperu (Scientific) National Park, which

contains the largest area of undisturbed Brigalow and related vegetation types in the

Northern Brigalow Belt.”   


“By locating the offset site strategically near an existing national park it will increase

the ability to protect Queensland’s biodiversity hotspots and create corridors

for

wildlife migration to help mitigate the impact of climate change,” said Mr Grover. 


“The Northern Brigalow Belt region is an important biodiversity hotspot for

Queensland and is home to some of the world’s most threatened wildlife.” 


“Although 90 per cent of the bioregion is currently used for grazing, Ecofund is able

to work with landholders to maintain a balance between protecting the environment,

industrial development and the agricultural needs for Queensland,” he said. 


“Ecofund worked with a rural landholder to secure the offset and negotiated a

financial agreement to protect the environmental values of the area. The area will be

fenced off from grazing, and financial assistance from the project will ensure the site

is better managed against its main threats such as fire and weeds. “ 


The landholder, Mr Griff Symonds said, “I’m very pleased with the process that has

seen the area protected as a green offset. What was marginally productive land for

us is now able to be better managed and I’m proud to be involved in helping to

protect areas important to Queensland’s environment.”  


Wesfarmers Curragh’s Executive General Manager, Rod Bridges said, “We support

the role that environmental offsets play in the balance between industry development

in Queensland and the environment.” 


“Ecofund’s expertise in sourcing and securing the offset and their knowledge of

related government policy made the entire process very professional and cost

effective,” said Mr Bridges. 


Conservation Environment Ecofund Queensland 3 image

Conservation Environment Ecofund Queensland 4 image


16 July 2010



MEDIA RELEASE


Mr Grover said, “Coal mining is an important economic driver in the Northern

Brigalow Belt region for Queensland and Ecofund is proud to work with organisations

such as Wesfarmers Curragh who are willing to go beyond simply meeting

regulations to develop offset plans and protect biodiversity hotspots to create a

balance between industry and the environment.” 


“Wesfarmers Curragh has shown leadership within the industry to ensure the offset is

protected in perpetuity as a Nature Refuge,” said Mr Grover. 



Media Contact: 


Melissa Brooks

Group Manager Marketing and Communications 

07 3017 6466



About Ecofund Queensland 


Ecofund is a newly formed Queensland Government owned business that aims to

help balance the impact of human activities by protecting and enhancing

Queensland’s natural environment. Ecofund is a provider of carbon and

environmental offset services. 


Ecofund works in partnership with government agencies, businesses and interested

individuals with a statutory obligation or a voluntary commitment to create a low

carbon future and protect and manage the environmental values of Queensland.

Ecofund assists developers to meet the requirements of environmental regulation,

can provide rural landholders with alternative income streams, and delivers real

conservation outcomes that expand the natural protected area estate. 

 






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