NSW GROWS ITS NATIONAL PARK ESTATE

The NSW Government is growing its national parks estate, adding over 4,500 hectares to the network. Environment Minister Gabrielle Upton said: “More than seven million hectares in NSW is now managed and protected for conservation with our National Parks Estate (Reservations) Bill being passed in Parliament.”

“The additions include important koala habitat, an upland swamp‑threatened ecological community in Upper Kangaroo Valley, significant areas of rainforest in the Upper Hunter and sites of significant cultural heritage.

“The areas have been selected for their conservation and connectivity values and include five separate transfers:
· Part of Carrai State Forest (2,080 hectares) to Willi Willi National Park
· Yarrawa State Forest (120.6 hectares) to Budderoo National Park
· Part of Mernot State Forest (1,144 hectares) to Curracubundi State Conservation Area
· Yango State Forest (647.5 hectares) to a new Yango State Conservation Area
· Muldiva State Forest (513 hectares) to be vested in the Minister for the Environment for the purposes of Part 11 of the National Parks and Wildlife Act 1974.

These transfers are part of a NSW Government plan for an additional 43,000 hectares of conservation land to be added to the national park estate including:
· 24,000 hectares of new koala parks and reserves as part of the NSW Koala Strategy
· 5,400 hectares of new additions to the national park estate
· 14,200 hectares of state forest to be dedicated as flora reserves and transferred to the management of the National Parks and Wildlife Service.

“The Government is proud of its commitment to biodiversity conservation: we do it smartly, we do it uniquely, and of course the benefits of these new parks and reserves do not stop with the native fauna and flora that reside within them,” Ms Upton said. “Our national parks are a boon to local economies, bringing in valuable tourist dollars and providing local employment opportunities.”