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1370.0 - Measures of Australia's Progress, 2010  
Previous ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 15/09/2010   
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Land

WEEDS

Invasive weeds are among the most serious threats to Australia's natural environment and primary production industries. They displace native species, contribute significantly to land degradation, and reduce farm and forest productivity. Australia spends considerable time and money each year in combating weed problems and in protecting ecosystems and primary production on private and public land (AWC 2009).

Weeds of National Significance is an agreed list of 20 problem weeds used to guide a coordinated national effort for addressing weed problems. Selection of these species was made by the Australian government and all state and territory governments in 1999, based on environmental damage and economic impacts. The objective of the Weeds of National Significance program is to minimise the effects to Australia's natural ecosystems and productive capacity, while managing future threats to biodiversity, conservation, land management, societal welfare and primary industries.

In 2006-07, 88.8% (133,600 out of 150,400) of agricultural businesses reportedly undertook weed management activities to prevent or manage weeds on their holdings (ABS 2008). Australian farmers reported spending almost $3b on natural resource management during the 2006-07 year. More than half ($1.57b) was spent on the management of weed related issues. Animal and insect pest management was the next highest category of spending, followed by management of land and soil (ABS 2010).

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