The overwhelming message received by the review is that Australians care deeply about our iconic places and unique environment. Protecting and conserving them for the benefit of current and future generations is important for the nation.
The evidence received by the review is compelling. Australia’s natural environment and iconic places are in an overall state of decline and are under increasing threat. The pressures on the environment are significant—including land-use change, habitat loss and degradation, and feral animal and invasive plant species. The impact of climate change on the environment is building, and will exacerbate pressures, contributing to further decline. Given its current state, the environment is not sufficiently resilient to withstand these threats. The current environmental trajectory is unsustainable.
- Australia’s natural environment and iconic places are in an overall state of decline and are under increasing threat. The current environmental trajectory is unsustainable.
- The EPBC Act is ineffective. It does not enable the Commonwealth to effectively protect environmental matters that are important for the nation. It is not fit to address current or future environmental challenges.
- Fundamental reform of national environmental law is required, and National Environmental Standards should be the foundation
- The EPBC Act should focus on core Commonwealth responsibilities
- Planning at the national and regional (landscape) scale is needed to take action where it matters most and to support adaptive management
- More needs to be done to restore the environment
- National Environmental Standards and national and regional (landscape) plans will support greater harmonisation with the states and territories