Australian rangeland futures: time now for systemic responses to interconnected challenges

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    Australia’s rangelands contain wildlands, relatively intact biodiversity, widespread Indigenous cultures, and pastoral and mining industries, all set in past and present events and mythologies. The nature of risks and threats to these rangelands is increasingly global and systemic. Future policy frameworks must acknowledge this and act accordingly. This paper collates current key information on land tenures and land uses, people and domestic livestock in Australian rangelands, and discusses five perspectives on how the rangelands are changing, in order to inform the development of integrated policy – climate and environmental change; the southern rangelands; the northern rangelands; Indigenous Australia; and governance and management. From these perspectives, more attention must be paid to ensuring a social licence to operate across a range of uses, acknowledging and supporting a younger, more Indigenous population, implementing positive aspects of technological innovation, halting capital and governance leakages, and building human capacity. A recommended set of systemic responses should therefore (i) address governance issues consistently and comprehensively, (ii) ensure that new technologies can foster the delivery of sustainable livelihoods, and (iii) focus capacity-building on a community of industries where knowledge is built for the long-term. All three of these should be undertaken with an eye to the changing demographics of the rangelands.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)7-13
    Number of pages7
    JournalProceedings of the Royal Society of Victoria
    Issue number1
    Publication statusPublished - 27 Jul 2021


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