HELP US RECONNECT THE TROPICAL FORESTS OF THE WET TROPICS
The Wet Tropics is one of the most biologically diverse regions on the planet and the only place where two World Heritage sites exist side by side – the Great Barrier Reef and the world’s oldest continuously surviving rainforest.
The IUCN has ranked the Wet Tropics as the second most irreplaceable place in the world because it is home to wildlife that doesn’t exist anywhere else.
It also has the potential to be one of the most important climate refugia on the planet.
The interconnected reefs and forests of the Wet Tropics are both at risk. However, while the Great Barrier Reef attracts significant investment (although still not enough), biodiversity and forest restoration are seriously under-funded despite the potential for multiple co-benefits.
Across the region there are substantial areas of ancient remnant forest that are still unprotected and at risk from:
- Climate change
- Urban development
- Agricultural development
- Feral animals
The Wet Tropics World Heritage Rainforest is composed of large areas of fragmented habitat. Our goal is to reconnect and buffer these remaining areas to create one large healthy and intact system that is more resilient. This will help us conserve this critical ecosystem for future generations.
Accelerating the restoration of these forests has multiple benefits:
- Protection of threatened species habitat (inc. cassowary, mahogany glider, mabi rainforest, littoral rainforest, spectacled flying fox)
- Carbon sequestration
- Protection of important climate refugia
- Filtration of water flowing to the Great Barrier Reef
- Opportunities for Indigenous people and local rural communities
Why invest in forest restoration in the Wet Tropics?
- One of the most biologically diverse regions on the planet with potential as a climate refugia
- Established landscape restoration sector with capacity to scale
- Collaborative partnerships – conservation organisations coordinating through the Wet Tropics Restoration Alliance (established by the Wet Tropics Management Authority)
- Strategic approach informed by some of the world’s finest scientific expertise and Traditional Owner Ecological Knowledge
**Dark green blocks – wildlife corridors prioritised for restoration to reconnect habitat areas
A new biodiversity market scheme has been developed in the Wet Tropics to help increase investment for habitat restoration. The Cassowary Credit Scheme is a mechanism that enables investors such as governments, philanthropists or corporates to pay landholders and land managers to undertake habitat restoration activities. Read more.