11 August 2022

Tanya Plibersek MP, Minister for the Environment and Water

Minister officially opens koala hospital

Minister for the Environment and Water Tanya Plibersek has today officially opened the Port Stephens Koala Hospital, reaffirming the Australian Government’s commitment to Koala conservation.

In recent years, the cumulative impacts of climate change, disease, and habitat loss have caused a drastic decline in population numbers of Koalas, which are now listed as endangered in some states under national environment law.

This decline was accelerated by the 2019-2020 Black Summer bushfires, which impacted 3.7 million hectares of Koala habitat on Australia’s east coast.

In response, the Australian Government is taking action to protect this iconic species and has committed nearly $76 million to Koala conservation over the next four years.

Most recently, the Australian Government committed $24.5 million towards Koala conservation under the $224.5 million Saving Native Species Program.

Quotes attributable to the Minister for the Environment and Water Tanya Plibersek:

“I am excited to be opening the Port Stephens Koala Hospital and to see first-hand the work that is being done to protect and revive this iconic species,” Minister Plibersek said.

“It’s hard to imagine Australia without koalas. But because of habitat destruction, climate change and disease, they’re at genuine risk of extinction.

“Last month, I released the State of the Environment Report. It showed that, in the past five years, the number of threatened ecological communities in Australia had grown by another twenty percent – while the number of threatened species had grown by almost ten percent.

“The Australian Government is determined to protect Australian species from the ongoing threat of extinction. That’s why we’ve committed $224.5 million to establish the Saving Native Species Program, that will boost protection for native species including the Koala, combat invasive species, and improve conservation planning.”