19 November 2018
Major report on SA’s environment highlights climate change and biodiversity risks
The state’s peak environment body has called on the Marshall Government to invest in a comprehensive response to the growing climate change, biodiversity loss and water challenges highlighted in today’s release of the five-yearly State of the Environment (SOE) Report.
“Once every five years we get a reality check about how our environment is tracking, with far more data and facts, and far less greenwash,” said Craig Wilkins, Conservation SA Chief Executive.
“Today’s report is a stark reminder of how exposed our wellbeing and our major industries are to water, climate change and biodiversity shocks.
“In some areas – like renewable energy, or recycling – we are doing well. That’s something we can all be incredibly proud of.
“But two areas stand out, and if we don’t address them soon, they will devastate our way of life: climate change and biodiversity loss,” he said.
“In each of these the evidence is stark. There is no way to sugar-coat this. We are travelling poorly — and the trend is getting worse.
“It is essential the Marshall Government treats this report, and the issues it raises, with the gravitas it deserves.
“If this was a signature report on the economy or the health system, its results would jump-start the State Government into immediate emergency action,” said Mr Wilkins.
“Step 1 is to start reversing the massive cuts to the environment that have happened year on year for a decade.
"Before our eyes, our landscapes are changing. We are radically re-writing nature's rulebook, with massive flow-on impact on our birds, plants and animals.
"While nature is incredibly resilient, it's not bullet-proof, and with a changing climate the ability of nature to bounce back is being lost.
"This report is a wakeup call for South Australians who pride themselves on living in such a beautiful natural environment. We cannot afford to take it for granted,” he said.
The 2018 State of the Environment Report can be found here: www.epa.sa.gov.au/soe-2018
Media Contact: Craig Wilkins, 0417 879 439