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Biodiversity conservation: the major issues relating to the effective conservation of biological diversity in Australia's marine realm

A report commissioned by Environment Australia 1997

Commonwealth of Australia
v 0 642 54542 1

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Preface

Providing for the conservation of Australia's marine biological diversity in the face of existing and increasing pressures from human activities is a central component in developing a national Oceans Policy. In this review paper we define the key conservation issues that will need resolution to ensure that marine biological diversity within our jurisdiction is conserved. These issues are related to government or private-sector policies, strategies and plans: they must be addressed in the development and implementation of an Australian Oceans Policy and consequential strategies and actions for its implementation.

The biological and policy context of the key issues is only briefly described, as they are detailed in other Oceans Policy Planning and Management papers. Our aim for this review is to identify and describe the major issues relating to the effective conservation of biological diversity in Australia's marine realm. We outline the actions within the National Oceans Policy context that are needed to ensure that biodiversity is conserved and managed effectively now and in the future.

Our review draws on extensive scientific and technical data and information, including marine and terrestrial best practice in Australia and overseas, but we have tried to avoid technical language and jargon.

The review was conducted for the Portfolio Marine Group of Environment Australia, between 22 September and 14 November, 1997. It was supported by a workshop with a panel of additional experts, held in Canberra on 29 to 31 October 1997. We gratefully acknowledge the time and willing participation of those who attended the workshop (Appendix A1). We also gratefully acknowledge the extensive support and input from staff in the Portfolio Marine Group (Gordon Anderson, Adrianne Waterman, Neal Hardy, Suzanne Ferguson) and in CSIRO Marine Research (Helen Webb, Vivienne Mawson).