Assessment of Australia's Terrestrial Biodiversity 2008

Assessment of Australia's Terrestrial Biodiversity 2008 (PDF - 4.8 MB)

The key findings
  • Many of Australia's biological assets are still in decline, and threats are ongoing and compounded by climate change.
  • Progress has been made in the collaboration between national, and state and territory jurisdictions in improving Australia's biodiversity information.
  • Despite this progress, there are insufficient data to report on national trends in important aspects of Australia's biodiversity.
  • A range of useful monitoring systems exist at regional and state levels.
  • Landscape-scale approaches are pivotal to long term biodiversity conservation successes, but there is a lack of effective and systematic monitoring systems at this scale that can be used for evaluation.
  • The strengthening and consolidation of the regional delivery model for natural resource management (NRM) has assisted delivery of biodiversity outcomes.
Implications for future biodiversity assessments

This Assessment has highlighted the lack of many nationally consistent datasets to assess the status and trends of biodiversity in Australia, while showing that there are many instances of good datasets at a state and regional level.

To assist in national reporting of trends in biodiversity, all jurisdictions could:

  • support strategic long-term monitoring of selected species and communities following agreed protocols
  • support strategic research to establish empirical relationships between biodiversity and important surrogates, including native vegetation and wetlands
  • support adaptive learning from major biodiversity management and conservation programs (including the reserves system, recovery actions, and threat abatement actions)
  • support research into the impacts of climate change on biodiversity and its interactions with existing stressors, and
  • support programs that build resilience in ecosystems, communities and species to threats to biodiversity.

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