Sabrina Muysken

Biodiversity Month has finally arrived. So, what exactly is biodiversity? Essentially the term encapsulates every living thing that exists on earth and the natural environments in which they live.

Mother nature’s magnificence is undisputed; her aptitude to nourish the world whilst supplying countless medications and industrial products is a genuine marvel. In return, all she asks for is a little TLC. It only seems fair not to bite the hand that literally feeds us. Yet, over the past hundred years we’ve been poorly behaved children. Environmental degradation is all around; even tainting the beauteous Ku-ring-gai area we all love and enjoy so much.

The month long dedication to this issue, as declared by the Australian Government, acts as a reminder of the significance in promoting the protection, conservation, and improvement of Australia’s unique biodiversity. Housing between 600 000 and 700 000 incredible species, it’s increasingly important to uphold our ecological morals. NSW alone has experienced a marked decline in biodiversity, with over 100 plant and animal species becoming extinct.

Closer to home, our very own environment is under attack. We have three critically endangered communities, including Blue Gum High Forest, Sydney Turpentine Ironbark Forest and Duffys Forest. Unlike many other Sydney Council areas, Ku-ring-gai doesn’t have an Urban Forest Strategy set in place to protect its ancient forest.

“There is an urgent need to put in place a Recovery Plan for the critically endangered Blue Gum High Forest. If these measures are not implemented, local fauna and flora face collapse,” Says the CEO of the Nature Conservation Council Kate Smolski.

Enter the passionate community group Friends of Ku-ring-gai Environment (FOKE). FOKE have united with local residents to fight off over development threatening local natural heritage. That’s not to say the group is anti-development, rather anti environmental dilapidation.

“FOKE encourages locals to ask Ministers to implement a Recovery Plan for the entire Blue Gum High Forest community to secure rare, urban biodiversity for the future city of Sydney,” says Ms Smolski.

Environmental protection is a moral duty. You don’t need to be a tree-hugging vegan to get involved and make a difference. Why not start the fight at home with some simple tricks to protect our local area.

Get rid of weeds. If these seemingly harmless plants work their way past your fences they can do irreparable damage to surrounding bushland.

Reduce, reuse and recycle. Simply reducing your rubbish can prevent garbage build up in landfill and waterways.

Compost bins. Not only do they break down all organic matter like vegetables but they’re great for your garden and a fun pet project as well.

Drains are for water only. Oils and chemicals may start in the sink but end up in our beautiful waterways. Stop the cycle by flushing only water and using natural products.

Join FOKE September 12 on their next biodiversity walk.