It’s been a horrific start of 2020. Out-of-control bushfires caused so much destruction affecting people and nature across Australia. Fortunately, the bushfires eventually went out — thanks to rainfall and the amazing efforts of firefighters and volunteers.
During Australia's 2019/2020 bushfire emergency, it’s been incredible to see the outpouring of support. Communities have come together to make a difference during this difficult time.
Australia’s bushfires is estimated to have burnt 10 million hectares. That's more than the 2019 Amazon fires and 2018 California wildfires combined.
Early studies found fires burnt through more than 80% of the known habitat of 49 threatened species. And at least 50% of the habitat of another 65 threatened species have been affected. They include: Long-footed Potoroo, Kangaroo Island Glossy Black-Cockatoo, Kangaroo Island Dunnart, Brush-tailed Rock-wallaby, Greater Glider, Koala, Eastern Ground Parrot and Eastern Bristlebird.
Australia already has the highest rate of mammal extinction in the world. We need to make sure these fires don’t push more species over the brink. And we urgently need to rethink about how we care for our beautiful country by putting a long-term plan in place.
million hectares burnt
billion animals killed
habitat burnt of 49 threatened species
habitat burnt 65 threatened species
Species affected by the bushfires
Time to be bold
Beyond the immediate impacts on wildlife and their habitat, the fires have highlighted the fragility of our landscapes and need for long-term investment in the resilience of our environment.
The scale of the recovery, restoration and resilience is enormous. Balancing the many needs of people and nature isn’t easy. But we need to start somewhere.
Our team of dedicated specialists have met with Government officials including Federal Environment Minister, Sussan Ley. Our focus is on long-term, landscape-scale change.
Right now, business as usual is just not good enough. We’ve taken a bold step, and developed a world-leading initiative.
Reinventing Conservation in Australia
With a disaster of this mammoth scale, exacerbated by prolonged drought and floods, no single entity can manage recovery and restoration efforts on their own.
Coordinated and effective restoration and long-term thinking is the answer to successful conservation at scale and building resilience.
That’s why we’ve brought together experts across sectors from agriculture, conservation, Indigenous land management, forestry, business and finance, science and philanthropy, to commit to a bold plan to protect the future of Australia’s natural environment.
Together, we’ve developed a market-based approach, that includes grants, to deliver funding from private investors, government and philanthropy to restore private and public land with the aim to:
- Fast-track the rescue, recovery and restoration of bushfire damaged areas
- Build economic and environmental resilience of farms, forests and Indigenous lands by investing in biodiversity and ecosystem health
- Ensure long-term investment to protect threatened species and significantly improve the health and extent of their natural habitat
We’re working with credible, knowledgeable and committed partners in government, community, science and research, but we’re not stopping there. For the plan to be successful and enduring, the plan needs to be supported through government policy. We’re working tirelessly to make this world-first recovery funding package scientifically sound, impactful, large-scale, and long-term.
The outcome for Australia will be a stronger, more resilient and prosperous environment for the benefit of people and nature.
This is an ambitious plan. With your support and that of our partners, we’re making good progress, but this is just the beginning.
Without an urgent and ambitious strategy for change, we will only experience more loss. With your help, we can still save our unique and endangered wildlife and their homes before they disappear forever.