Cassy O’Connor MP | Greens Leader and Parks spokesperson
The Premier and part-time Parks’ Minister has finally revealed the extent of devastation to the Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Area from the recent – and still burning – bushfires.
A massive 6% of the World Heritage Area has been burnt, with 16% of that unlikely to ever recover. These are wilderness gems like King Billy and pencil pine forests, ancient rainforest ecosystems and alpine communities that are gone forever.
These fires, started by dry lightning in December and January, are a direct result of our warming climate. The Premier, however, failed to acknowledge climate change in his State of the State address, only belatedly doing so when challenged by the Greens yesterday.
This Summer saw communities and wilderness scorched; much will take decades to recover. Gondwanan species, however, have been lost forever.
Tackling climate change and mitigating its impacts requires strong leadership.
The Greens acknowledge the tragic loss of Gondwanan relics with deep sadness. We urge the Premier, who is also Minister for Parks, to recognise what has been lost forever and properly invest in protecting the TWWHA from climate change-related fire in the upcoming State Budget.