Extent and rate of change of protected areas

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Key finding

The protected area estate increased by 3 million hectares between 2011-2015 and now covers 7.9% of Queensland. Nature refuges form the majority of the increase. Recent changes to protected area legislation have seen an amalgamation of a number of protected area tenures.

Protected areas, such as national parks, are critical to the preservation of our environment as they include the protection and management of lands for the purpose of conserving natural and cultural values.

In Queensland, protected areas are established under the Nature Conservation Act 1992 and include State lands managed by the Queensland Parks and Wildlife Service. There are currently two broad types of tenured (property-based) protected area; national parks and regional parks. There are also two non-tenured (unbounded) protected areas: nature refuges and coordinated conservation areas.

Between 2011-2015, the extent of protected area estate increased by more than 3 million hectares (a 33% increase within that period) to cover about 7.9% of Queensland. There have been 122 additional properties added, the majority being in nature refuge non-tenure protected areas.

Most changes to the numbers of tenured protected areas relate to legislative amendments. In 2014, six national park tenures were amalgamated into two conservation/resource park tenures.

More information:

Indicator: Rate of change in extent of protected areas

Change in extent of protected areas under the Nature Conservation Act 1992 between the period 2011-2015. Protected areas include National Parks (including Aboriginal Land and Cape York Peninsula Aboriginal Lands), Regional Parks, Nature Refuges and Coordinated Conservation. Data is current as at June 2015.

Download data from Queensland Government data