Find out about marine species conservation in Australia
Under the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, Australia has rights and responsibilities over 16 million square kilometres of ocean - more than twice the area of the Australian continent.
Within this area live thousands of marine species, some of which are unique to Australia and all of which contribute to making Australia the most biodiversity rich developed country.
Reducing the risk of vessel strikes on marine mega-fauna
Vessel strike is a potential or known threat to many of Australia’s marine fauna including whales, dolphins, dugongs and marine turtles. Interactions with marine fauna can occur with vessels of all sizes from smaller recreational vessels through to large commercial ships.
The number and species involved in collisions it not clear as the interactions are often not reported or people operating the vessel were not actually aware that a collision had taken place.
To reduce the risk of vessel strikes and the impacts they may have on marine fauna, the Australian government is developing a National Strategy for Mitigating Vessel Strike of Marine Mega-fauna (the Strategy).
Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999
The Australian Government uses the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (EPBC Act) to protect and manage threatened, migratory and marine species.
Threatened species are listed under the EPBC Act. Threatened marine species conservation and management involves:
- determining the threats faced by marine species
- preventing, mitigating and/or managing those threats
- supporting the recovery of the species until they can be removed from the EPBC Act list of threatened species.
More about the EPBC Act
- EPBC Act
- EPBC Act list of migratory species
- EPBC Act list of threatened fauna
- List of marine species - Declaration under s248 of the EPBC Act
- Permits and application forms
Our long-term strategy for the recovery of threatened marine species includes scientific research, community education and awareness, partnership building and working with relevant industries and other stakeholders.