Essity, the company behind the Cushelle brand, has announced a special partnership with WWF, pledging £150,000 to support the recovery of koalas impacted by the fires and their habitats.
The partnership also involves removing the brand’s mascot ‘Kenny the Koala’ from three million of its packs in a bid to help raise awareness of the disappearing species.
In 2020, the Australian bushfires wreaked havoc on koalas, with the fires impacting more than 60,000 out of the remaining 85,00 marsupials in Australia, leaving thousands homeless and threatening extinction for the entire koala species, with possible extinction in parts of Australia by 2050.
Climate change continues to make extreme events such as bushfires more likely and more intense, with record-breaking temperatures and severe drought in Australia putting forests at more risk than ever before, and putting pressure on firefighter services.
At its hottest, Australia recorded temperatures of 49.9 degrees in the bushfire crisis and by 2050, the probability of extreme fire risk is set to increase 25% as a direct result of increasing greenhouse gas emissions.
Over 19 million hectares of land was impacted by the fires in 2020, equalling more than half the size of the entire UK, including over 5 million hectares of eucalyptus forests and woodlands, the main food source for koalas.
Commenting on the crisis, Paul De Ornellas, chief adviser on wildlife at WWF said, "The koala is one of the world’s most iconic animals and they are an integral part of the Australian bush, perched high in the trees, sleeping up to 18 hours per day and munching through up to 1kg of eucalyptus leaves each day."
De Ornellas added that due to increased danger of bushfires "the species is now at enormous risk."
Jo Pybus, sustainability manager at Essity, added, “The ongoing impact of the bushfires is incredibly worrying. We are not only donating to the cause to help aid the rehabilitation of the animals and their habitat but are also working closely with WWF to raise awareness of the issue and the longer-term implications.
“We hope that our #SaveKoalasSaveKenny campaign will bring British consumers attention back to the crisis and in turn make a significant difference to our mascot Kenny’s marsupial friends down under.”
© 2021 Checkout – your source for the latest Irish retail news. Article by Conor Farrelly. Click sign up to subscribe to Checkout.