In case you haven't heard, The Colong Foundation for Wilderness has officially changed its name to the Australian Foundation for Wilderness. It will be conducting its campaigns under the shortened title, Wilderness Australia.
The new organisation will continue the fifty year tradition of the Colong Foundation: fighting campaigns of great persistence, which have precise goals and high impact in the media and upon government.
Right now, ecosystems are becoming more fragile and ecological processes are facing collapse. Over 1,400 plant and animal species that live in Australian forests are threatened with extinction. Recent fires and floods have only worsened their plight, with 1 billion animals killed in the 2019/2020 fires alone.
Yet nature’s immediate needs are not being treated seriously in Australia. In March, Prime Minister Scott Morrison expressed support for the NSW Government’s plan to raise the Warragamba Dam. He also announced plans to remove important federal protections used to prevent environmentally destructive infrastructure projects.
It is in this context that we’re bringing our long NSW-based campaign experience to the national stage. So that we can speak up for wild landscapes across the nation.
Wilderness Australia remains committed to our long-standing campaign to oppose the plan to raise the wall of the Warragamba Dam, a project that would vandalise the World Heritage-listed Greater Blue Mountains National Park and set a dangerous global precedent.
But we’re also taking action to oppose an emerging industry that seeks to burn our forest timber in power stations in the name of renewable energy.
The biomass burning industry is active in many parts of the world. We intend to prevent it from taking hold here, and to dramatically increase the protection of forests across eastern Australia as we do so. Only in that way can we save the wild places that our animals and birds depend on.
And if we succeed, we’ll also help in the fight against climate change.
With the support of people like you who share our love of nature, Wilderness Australia will be a new and powerful national voice for our wild landscapes and native animals, now and in the future.
Bob Debus AM
Chair, Australian Foundation for Wilderness Ltd
Former NSW Attorney General & Minister for the Environment
Former Australian Minister for Home Affairs