Lord Mayor Graham Quirk has today signed an agreement to partner with Lone Pine Wildlife Sanctuary, to kick-start the construction of a world-class koala research centre.
Under the agreement, Brisbane City Council will invest $2 million in the construction of the new facility, as well as $1.3 million over four years to assist scientific research operations.
“Brisbane is already the koala capital of Australia and we want to raise awareness and educate the community and visitors to the city about how they can be involved in koala conservation, to protect this important species for the future,” Cr Quirk said.
“The aim is to build a world-class facility that brings together Universities and other research institutions to advance life-saving research about the species,” Cr Quirk said.
“The centre will be staffed by scientific researchers who will focus on key issues facing koalas in the urban context, which may include habitat loss, predation by domestic animals, road kill and disease, and will collaborate with universities and other research institutions.”
Cr Quirk said that $120 million would also be spent over four years to preserve koala habitat and to continue our work in making Brisbane a clean, green and sustainable city
“750 hectares of bushland will be purchased, through a package to fast-track Council’s bushland acquisition program,” he said.
“Many of the sites to be purchased adjoin previous bushland acquisitions, to develop wildlife corridors in key koala habitat areas.
“Acquisitions will be made in suburbs including Anstead, Bracken Ridge, Burbank, Chandler, Karawatha, Kholo, Mount Crosby, Oxley, Ransome, The Gap and Wakerley.”
Cr Quirk said Council’s investment was part of a $539 million commitment this over four years, to deliver a clean, green and sustainable Brisbane.
“I have announced that this year, Council will become a carbon neutral organisation for the first time, through the purchase of carbon credits,” he said.
“This also follows Brisbane being named Australia’s Most Sustainable City for the second time in three years.”
Final design of the centre is expected to be completed by mid-2017, with construction set to commence in late 2017 before the centre is expected to open in June 2018.
For more information about this and other sustainability programs, visit www.brisbane.qld.gov.au or call Council on 07 3403 8888.