Southern Brown Tree Frog Litoria ewingii
Crimson Mallee - Gawler Ranges National Park
Pygmy Desert Monitor Varanus eremius
Yellow-footed Rock-wallaby Petrogale xanthopus


The Nature Conservation Society of South Australia is a voluntary body with members drawn from all parts of the State and all walks of life. The Society's primary objective is to foster the conservation of the State's wildlife and natural habitats. Our activities include:

  • protecting and managing habitats, particularly native vegetation
  • researching threatened species and habitats
  • working to ensure adequate park dedication, management and legislation
  • educating the community and all tiers of government
  • co-operating with other conservation groups and land managers

The Society is also active in public education through activities such as Sunday Walks with Nature program, general meetings and its journal Xanthopus.



Constitution Review
general-meeting-ncssa-and-bssa   Here is the proposed new constitution for members to review
NCSSA EPBC Act submission re rocket launch facility planned for Whalers Way
ncssa-website-update-re-whalers-way-sept-2021 Whalers Way is an area dedicated to nature conservation, specifically protected under South Australian legislation. It also contains habitat for threatened species listed under...
Wilderness Protection Areas on Kangaroo Island – management plan rewrite
In "re-writing" the management plans for five Wilderness Protection Areas on Kangaroo Island, NCSSA called for their outstanding wilderness quality to be preserved. Protecting...

Rockets will blast species closer to extinction

Would you agree with a commercial rocket launching facility and associated infrastructure being put in pristine, protected coastal vegetation?

Neither does the Nature Conservation Society of SA.

Emu-Wren Dion Thompson

The NCSSA has been concerned about the location of a proposed rocket launching facility since becoming aware of it, as detailed in the Society's letter of concern.

The area, known as Whalers Way, is dedicated for conservation and is home to a number of threatened species - not the right place for an industrial development.

In June 2021, the company was granted approval to “test” the impact of noise and vibration on certain threatened species, by launching from a “temporary” pad to inform the Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for a permanent facility. So far, the first 'test' ended with the rocket in flames.. 

The (EIS) for the proposed permanent rocket launching facility, released in August 2021 before the 'tests' had taken place, confirms the Society’s fears – it shows:

  • The biggest of the two proposed permanent launch pads would be right on top of prime habitat for the threatened Southern Emu-Wren, pushing the subspecies closer to extinction
  • Both the Southern Emu-Wren and Western Whipbird will be subjected to direct habitat loss through clearance as well as degradation and disturbance from repeated rocket launches which will cause stress, avoidance and fright-flight responses, and may also disrupt the breeding
  • Noise from launches will inhibit the recovery of endangered Osprey and White-bellied Sea Eagle, with the EIS stating “Osprey up to 5km away may exhibit a behavioural response to launch noise”
  • Whalers Way is a high bushfire risk site and the threatened Southern Emu-Wren and Western Whipbird are fire sensitive, however, details about managing bushfire risk have been kept secret from the public, with the Bushfire Management Plan having been removed from the documents on exhibition
  • Habitat will be excised from the Heritage Agreement to facilitate the development.

If the company won’t even reconsider the siting of the biggest proposed permanent launch pad, the NCSSA has argued that the proposal should be refused outright under national environmental legislation in a submission provided to the federal Environment Minister.

If consideration of this proposal is to continue, the NCSSA is calling for independent review of possible locations as a key recommendation in the Society's submission to the State 'major development' assessment process, as was done for the assessment of the Kangaroo Island Timber Port.



Mother and calf Southern Right Whales in Sleaford Bay Sept 2021


Want to do more? Sign this petition to show you oppose such a facility in a conservation area, and follow this Facebook page for further updates.


photos: Southern Emu Wren Dion Thompson

            Mother and calf Southern Right Whales in Sleaford Bay Sept 2021 @take_2_photography.ep