Conservationists urge leaders to prioritise sustainability
LESS than ten minutes from the Linville fire, a group of eager learners gathered to hear from experts and raise awareness about endangered animals in the region.
The Somerset-based conservation group Friends of the Forest Inc. hosted about 30 attendees in the Old Church Gallery in Moore for Threatened Species Day.
Group president Carolita Fuentes said speakers, who ranged from wildlife carers and vets to ecology experts, shared insights with guests and encouraged conversation.
She said the goal of the event was to motivate people to come together to tackle issues of conservation and to discuss what individuals can do differently around their homes.
"We are living in frightening times,” Ms Fuentes said.
"It's even more crucial for our communities to become collaborative networks of people in action, where diversity and new ideas are welcomed and people from all age groups and abilities can offer skills and creativity to build a great future in our homes, neighbourhoods and wider community.”
She said conservation could be aided by governments and leaders shifting mindsets.
"It's whether the perspective can be shifted away from 'this is how we have always done things and there is money to this',” she said.
"To a perspective like 'what is realistically sustainable and beneficial in the long-term and can also provide innovative and lucrative business opportunities'.”
All the while, the fire in Linville blazed, with fire fighters struggling to contain it.
"It is somewhat ironic a small group of passionate people gathered from near and far in a tiny town as fires threatened and high winds blew,” Ms Fuentes said.
She said some attendees' spouses were on the front line battling fires.
"We were all a bit nervous about this throughout the afternoon but we were assured the Queensland Fire Service and Rural Fire Brigade and other volunteers were onto it.”
Because of the fire, one of the speakers was not able to attend.
"One of our wildlife carers was not able to make it since she was so busy with animals in her care, unfortunately,” Ms Fuentes said.