By ,11-Jul-2012 09:58:00
By AFOP, July 11th 2012
The Australian government has declared that 10 million hectares (24.71 million acres) of land is to be protected in what is being hailed as a landmark conservation effort. The Southern Tanami Indigenous Protected Area, in the southern Tanami Desert in Northern Territory has become Australia’s largest land conservation area. The area forms parts of the Trans-Australia Eco-link corridor, which stretches across 3,500 kilometres (21,74 miles) from Arnhem Land to the Great Bight.
Covering an area roughly the size of Portugal or Hungary, the newly protected land encompasses subtropical savannahs, red desert and waterlands which are essential habitats for many species. Bilby, mulgara, the princess parrot and great desert skink are among some of the species that will benefit from the creation of the conservation zone, with aboriginal groups being responsible for their protection. In the Indigenous Protected Area (IPA) indigenous people will combine their existing ecological knowledge to help species flourish, whilst maintaining their cultural norms and livelihoods.
The Australian government is to provide $1.64 million USD to fund local rangers looking after the region over the next 2 years, whilst leading conservation organisation The Nature Conservancy is spending $512,000 to assist with the areas management. Species currently facing threats from extinction and aboriginal groups, who have lived on the land for thousands of years, can now thrive thanks to this historic declaration by Australia’s government.
The Sydney Morning Herald-
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