Leo DiCaprio Turns Up Heat on Australia to Save Swift Parrot!

Australia's Minister for Environment Tanya Plibersek has given tacit support to beef up protections of the endangered species.

Mon 12 Feb 24


Hollywood A-Lister Leonardo DiCaprio has called on the Australian and Tasmanian governments to end forest harvesting in areas close to Swift Parrot nesting sites – citing a promise by the Australian government to prevent any new extinctions.

Mr DiCaprio shared with his 62 million Instagram followers that the Tasmanian Supreme Court granted an injunction on forest harvesting in the Huon Valley, in a decision described by Bob Brown as a “huge win” for the Bob Brown Foundation.

The foundation alleges the state authority illegally approved a forestry permit “despite evidence that critically endangered swift parrots lived and had nesting habitat in the coupe,” Dr Brown said.

The foundation’s application for an injunction to suspend forestry activity in the coupe until the case was heard was granted by Supreme Court of Tasmania Justice David Porter on January 31st.

“We will be bringing more experts and more surveillance of the logging of these forests,” according to Dr Brown, the former leader of the Australia Greens, with Justice Porter stating that there is a “significant” public interest in the proceedings.

Under the forest practices plan for the coupe, approved in September, any evidence of swift parrots or their nesting sites must be immediately reported to the Sustainable Timber Tasmania officer. Tree felling within 500 metres of the sightings must immediately cease until the evidence is assessed.

The Swift Parrot is a rare-discolour of bright green broad-tailed parrot that can only be found in southeastern Australia. The species has dramatically declined due to the predatory introduced species of sugar glider possums feeding on the female species. 

“Only an estimated 750 Swift Parrots remain, yet forest destruction has continued in their sole breeding sites in eastern Tasmania,” warned DiCaprio. 

The actor also raised awareness of a promise made by the Australian government, which would see no more species go extinct in the country.

“The Australian government has promised that it will prevent any new extinctions. Conservationists continue encouraging them to uphold their zero extinction commitment,” wrote DiCaprio.

“The only way to protect the Swift Parrot, and hundreds of other threatened Australian forest species, is to end native forest logging across Australia and Tasmania.”

Australia’s Environmental Minister Tanya Plibersek is leading a review of the Australian Environmental Laws and is pushing to have Tasmania’s Regional Forestry Agreements subject to the new laws – footage courtesy of @Sky News Australia.

In response, Australian Minister for Environment Tanya Plibersek announced last year a plan of recovery for the Swift Parrot and shared in response to Leo’s post that she wants to see the species thrive.

“It’s why we are reforming our laws to ensure that national environment laws regulate native forest logging for the first time,” she said.

Ms Plibersek stated that the government is committed to spending $500 million on protecting endangered native species, including the Swift Parrot.


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