Wet Tropics of Queensland integrity
Invasive species, pathogens and climate change are impacting the Wet Tropics’ Outstanding Universal Value (OUV).
When inscribed in December 1988, the Wet Tropics was identified as an essentially intact ecosystem with the level of human impact low (especially when compared to other tropical forest regions) with 80% of the estimated cover originally present at the time of the first European settlement remaining.
A substantial amount of lowland forest, adjoining the property, had been cleared for agricultural purposes. Human disturbances that cumulatively detract from the overall natural integrity are scattered throughout (e.g. infrastructure such as transmission lines, access roads, abandoned mine sites and more extensive areas selectively logged prior to listing). However, the evaluation noted that these disturbances accounted for only a small proportion of the total area of the property.
Climate change is a key emerging threat to the Wet Tropics’ integrity. With even a small increase in temperature, large declines are predicted for almost every endemic vertebrate species as well as many restricted plant species confined to the area.
Other threatening processes impacting on the Wet Tropic’s OUV are:
- invasive plants, animals and pathogens
- altered hydrological patterns
- altered fire regimes.
Indicator: Integrity of World Heritage criteria attributes
Integrity of Wet Tropics of Queensland World Heritage property World Heritage criteria attributes.
- Previous Wet Tropics of Queensland World Heritage natural criteria
- Next Climate change pressure on the Wet Tropics of Queensland