Marine species conservation

Find out about marine species conservation in Australia

Under the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, Australia has rights and responsibilities over 16 million square kilometres of ocean - more than twice the area of the Australian continent.

Within this area live thousands of marine species, some of which are unique to Australia and all of which contribute to making Australia the most biodiversity rich developed country.

Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999

The Australian Government uses the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (EPBC Act) to protect and manage threatened, migratory and marine species.

Threatened species are listed under the EPBC Act. Threatened marine species conservation and management involves:

  • determining the threats faced by marine species
  • preventing, mitigating and/or managing those threats
  • supporting the recovery of the species until they can be removed from the EPBC Act list of threatened species.

More about the EPBC Act

Our long-term strategy for the recovery of threatened marine species includes scientific research, community education and awareness, partnership building and working with relevant industries and other stakeholders.