Legal Challenge To ‘Politically Sanctioned Extinction’ Of Koalas

Australians for Animals say the native marsupial is at risk of disappearing from the east coast, where development and population growth is rampant.

A conservation group is threatening legal action against the Queensland and New South Wales governments, over what it calls the ‘politically sanctioned extinction’ of koalas.

Australians for Animals claims the native marsupial is at risk of disappearing from the east coast, in areas like the Gold Coast, where development and population growth is rampant.

The group’s co-ordinator, Sue Arnold told TEN Eyewitness News they’re investigating all options.

“We are seeking every legal means to force the Queensland Government to protect koalas,” Arnold said.

Efforts to move the marsupials from developing areas saved them from certain death. (Source: Getty)

Ms Arnold alleges Queensland’s Environment Department had failed in its duty of care, when translocating a population of koalas from Coomera, to make way for a new shopping centre, claiming most died in the process.

“They removed more than half a healthy population, and 23 koalas were killed in the first four months by dogs,” Arnold said.

Leading koala research, Professor Frank Carrick of the University of Queensland believes relocating the animals is only necessary to prevent extinction.

“When translocation is seen as a solution to poor planning and poor enforcement of existing controls, it’s a disaster,” Professor Carrick said.

Gold Coast Mayor Tom Tate has argued efforts to move the marsupials from developing areas saved them from certain death.

“If that wasn’t in place we’d have a lot more koalas lost,” Councillor Tate said.

Queensland’s Environment Minister Leeanne Enoch issued a statement to TEN Eyewitness News, saying her Government was close to implementing conservation strategies, under a newly formed advisory council.

“This Council will provide advice on the implementation of the Koala Conservation Strategy, currently in development,” Enoch wrote.