18 May 2021

Media release: Connecting kids with Canberra’s Amazing Nature

The Conservation Council ACT Region, with support from the ACT Government, has just published a new guide  ‘Canberra’s Amazing Nature’ for young people.

Focussing on Canberra’s natural and cultural heritage, the guide will be distributed to schools this week.

“Canberrans are lucky to live so close to nature, and we know that many people appreciate its value. This guide will help young people and their families learn more about the ecosystems and species that are so special to Canberra and the bioregion that we live in,” said Helen Oakey, Executive Director, Conservation Council

“The new publication is focussed on our local environment and natural heritage values and has been designed to be accessible and appealing to upper-primary school students.

“We know that young people care about the environment – just look at the number of students who participate in School Strikes 4 Climate! In fact, growing awareness of climate change helps build a better understanding of our natural environment.

“While we humans can engineer our environment to cope with climate change (such as air-conditioning to keep cool, or desalination plants to provide fresh water), plants and animals cannot, so it’s important to build resilience in our natural environment.

The guide includes an overview of the ecosystems of our region and a field guide to species in their various habitats – sometimes right in our own backyards.  It also talks about threats to the environment, and outlines actions that children and their families can take to protect their local environment, including some activities such as making a bee hotel, frog pond or lizard lounge.

“Protection of our natural heritage is important. Environmental threats include exotic plants and animals, pollution of our air, land and water, destruction of ecosystems for new developments and, of course, climate change.

“We hope that this guide will be a useful resource for students that are focussing on the environment and sustainability in the classroom, and that it will be a resource for Canberra students in the years to come,” said Ms Oakey
Minister for the Environment and Heritage, Rebecca Vassarotti, welcomed the publication.

“Canberra’s natural and cultural heritage is for everyone to enjoy, both now and for future generations,” Minister for Environment and Heritage Rebecca Vassarotti said. “Young people are often seen as passive inheritors of our heritage, when in fact, they can identify and protect heritage and can become strong advocates for the future,” said Minister Vassarotti.

“I look forward to seeing the Conservation Council’s Heritage Guide inspire more young people to explore and enjoy Canberra’s rich natural and cultural heritage.”