Koala numbers plummeted by a third in the 20 years between 1990 and 2010. That is only three koala generations. We must take action now, not wait for numbers to dwindle further. The Great Koala National Park will protect our national icon.

Why we need the Great Koala National Park

The koala is a globally recognised symbol of Australia and the second most recognised animal in the world after the Giant Panda, yet populations of our national icon are declining rapidly.

Currently most koalas in NSW live outside of protected areas. In fact, because our National Park network is biased towards higher, more infertile country, it doesn’t capture well the habitat that koalas prefer – fertile, coastal forests that produce more nutritious leaves.

Currently there is no national conservation reserve set aside to ensure the long-term survival of koalas. By contrast, China has established a national park covering one million hectares of bamboo forest to protect their pandas. The panda reserves are now World Heritage and the jewel in the crown of China’s tourism industry.

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Benefits to other threatened species

It’s not just koalas that will benefit from the Great Koala National Park! This spectacular landscape hosts lush World Heritage Gondwana Rainforests, some of the world’s most diverse towering eucalypt forests – which NPA has assessed as having World Heritage values – and an array of threatened species including the Hastings River Mouse, Spotted-tailed Quoll, Powerful Owl, Sooty Owl, Greater Glider and Yellow-bellied Glider.

Benefits to the community

We know that nature is the number one reason why people want to visit Australia, and the koala is our most celebrated species. But despite koalas having contributed billions of dollars to Australia’s economy through tourism, little of this money has been directed back into koala conservation. We are at serious risk of killing our golden goose through inaction and complacency.