OPINION: Multi-region pest control project is welcome news
THE news the Federal Government has provided funding for a pest control program in Bundaberg, the North Burnett and the South Burnett is welcome.
For a nation that prides itself on its native flora and fauna, agriculture industry, tourism offerings and innovation, it seems incongruous that we have such a bad problem with feral animals and noxious weeds.
Often the issue is placed in the too-hard basket, or the too-expensive one.
Naturally, tackling pests in a country the size of Australia is an epic challenge.
But that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t try.
Indeed, it should be a challenge we commit ourselves to accomplishing.
The benefits of eradicating pest species are manifold: native species face less competition, the environment suffers less damage and farmers face less livestock and crop loss.
It is shocking to learn that feral animals and weeds costs us almost $5 billion a year.
Imagine what that kind of money could be spent on if it wasn’t for pests.
While the funding for this new local project is welcome, more funding for more projects across the nation would also be welcome, and a productivity-boosting measure as we begin to exit the corona downturn.
Unless we join a conservation group or we go pig shooting, it is very hard for individuals to contribute to the solution.
Such a large-scale problem requires a response that is commensurate in size and scale, geographically and financially.