Rainforest is the most diverse ecosystem on Earth yet it only covers 6% of
the world's surface. A valuable resource for cultivated plants, many foods, raw
materials and medicines, still each year over 20 million hectares are destroyed
worldwide, logged for timber and cleared to plant crops and graze cattle. If
this vital ecosystem is to survive, remaining areas of rainforest must be
Australia is one of the few places in the developed world where rainforests
are available for public enjoyment, global conservation and research.
Since the late 1700s much of Australia's rainforest, including 75% of its
original tropical rainforest, has been cleared for agricultural, industrial and
urban development. Today rainforest covers just 0.5% or 4.2 million hectares of
Every broad rainforest type is found in Australia, the driest inhabited
continent on earth, where rainforests extend from the Kimberley region in
Western Australia, across the Northern Territory to Cape York in Queensland and
down the east coast through New South Wales and Victoria to Tasmania.