The Southwest Australia Ecoregion Initiative
Conservation through Collaboration
Established in 2002, the Southwest Australia Ecoregion Initiative (SWAEI) is a consortium of stakeholders who have the objective to develop a cooperative and coordinated approach to biodiversity conservation in the Southwest of Australia. The SWAEI is co-chaired by WWF-Australia and the West Australian Governments’ Department of Environment and Conservation.
This unique initiative is overseeing a project that has developed a world-first systematic conservation plan for the Southwest Australia Ecoregion – Australia’s only internationally recognized terrestrial biodiversity hotspot, and one of only 34 in the world.
This project identifies new priority areas for conservation action using a data-rich and rigorous systematic conservation planning process. Currently, there is no overarching strategy to protect this magnificent region. The SWAEI is building a scientific framework at the scale of whole landscapes, and informed by people who are expert in their fields. This approach will help better coordinate conservation action and focus attention on the most important places in the region.
The ultimate goal is for the systematic conservation planning project to inform investment and conservation action by a range of funding bodies and stakeholders, and ultimately will help landholders and the community to manage those lands, and deliver long-term positive and measurable biodiversity outcomes.
The Conservation Planning Project has received funding from the Australian Government’s Caring for our Country Program in 2009 and 2010 which has made possible the objectives and vision of the SWAEI.