May 6, 2005

Sea Acres Nature Reserve worthy of Heritage listing

SEA ACRES NATURE RESERVE WORTHY OF HERITAGE LISTING

MEDIA RELEASE: Anthony Albanese – 6 May 2005

The protection of Sea Acres Nature Reserve and coastal walk at Port Macquarie shows the importance of coastal protection even in areas in which there has been significant growth.

This NSW Reserve is a rare example of a natural environment surviving in harmony with the pressures of modern day life.

The Reserve contains three types of rainforest, including one of the few remaining pockets of coastal rainforest in Australia. The Reserve also contains a host of endangered species of flora and fauna including many rare birds.

The Sea Acres Nature Reserve includes a 1.3 kilometre raised boardwalk, theatre, classroom and ecology display. Around 50,000 visitors per annum experience the rainforest through the Sea Acres Rainforest Centre. Importantly, the local community is involved in conservation through the volunteers program.

The Federal Government should immediately place this important area on the National Heritage List. This should be a first step towards consideration of World Heritage listing. This could be achieved by adding the Reserve to the Central Eastern Rainforest Reserve of Australia (CERRA) which is one of the 16 Australian sites on the World Heritage List.

This area is as important a remnant of coastal rainforest as Iluka Bluff which is already part of the CERRA World Heritage Group.

The addition of the Sea Acres Nature Reserve would have the significant bonus of raising awareness of the fact that CERRA comprises some 366,507 hectares and more than 50 national parks, flora reserves and nature reserves of different varieties of rainforest.

Anthony visiting the Sea Acres Nature Reserve