Department of the Environment

Archived media releases and speeches

The Hon Tony Burke MP

Minister for Sustainability, Environment, Water, Population and Communities

Biodiversity fund opens for land managers in Northern Australia

Media release
5 November 2012

Environment Minister Tony Burke today announced new funding to help protect and manage the unique biodiversity values of northern Australia.

Mr Burke said the Northern Australia Targeted Investment, the latest round of the Biodiversity Fund, would help Indigenous communities, farmers, environmental groups and land managers protect the unique biodiversity of northern Australia.

The Biodiversity Fund seeks to protect and sustainably manage high value ecosystems in Northern Australia including places which support significant natural and indigenous heritage values, for example through projects located in and adjacent to current or potential national and World heritage areas.

"Providing long-term support to land managers leads to enduring results for our environment and for the community," Mr Burke said.

"Across Australia, farmers and other land managers already do a great job through Landcare work and the Biodiversity Fund will build on this work.

"Invasive species, inappropriate fire regimes and changing land use are having a significant negative impact on some of Australia's northern landscapes.

"Northern Australia contains magnificent sights that are like No other place on earth. This round is intended to acknowledge and preserve those irreplaceable values.

"Declines in the numbers of native birds and mammals in Northern Australia are of particular concern along with the impact that certain feral animals play in the decline of small mammals.

"Today's announcement demonstrates the government's commitment to take action now to manage threats to northern Australia's landscapes and protect the environment for future generations.

"Through this round we are seeking to support projects that help protect and manage high value ecosystems in Northern Australia, including places which support significant natural and Indigenous heritage values."

The Biodiversity Fund: Northern Australia Targeted Investment is a key component of the Gillard Labor Government's Clean Energy Future, Land Sector Package. It is taking a targeted approach to investment and will help inform future targeted investments around the country.

The Biodiversity Fund provides funding to build connectivity and resilience in the landscape by promoting biodiverse carbon plantings and revegetation, management of existing biodiverse carbon stores and managing pests in a connected landscape.

The Biodiversity Fund complements other Australian Government initiatives including the Carbon Farming Initiative and Caring for our Country to achieve a healthier, more productive and more sustainable Australia. The Northern Australia Targeted Investment round also supports the government's ongoing commitment to Closing the Gap.

The application round is now open and will close 5pm AEST 4 December 2012.

For more information about the Biodiversity Fund or to access the program guidelines, visit www.environment.gov.au/cleanenergyfuture or call the information line on 1800 008 678.