Cleland National Park has been recognised alongside some of the world’s other great natural wonders after being added to a royal conservation initiative.
Cleland has been added to the Queen's Commonwealth Canopy (QCC) - a network of forest conservation projects throughout the Commonwealth of Nations’ 56 member countries.
The national park is just the third QCC inclusion in Australia, alongside Bulburin National Park in Queensland and the ancient rainforests of K’gari (Fraser Island), since the program started in 2015.
The aim of the initiative is to combine knowledge on how best to preserve forests, while providing accreditation to sustainable forestry schemes within the Commonwealth.
Cleland is the final site accepted into the QCC as the program is being discontinued after the death of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II in September 2022.
The national park was originally admitted in 2019 but its formal announcement was delayed due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the Queen’s death.
South Australian Governor, Her Excellency the Honourable Frances Adamson AC, hosted an official ceremony on 20 November 2023 to acknowledge Cleland’s admission to the QCC.
National Parks and Wildlife Service (NPWS) Tourism and Commercial Services Director Jo Podoliak said NPWS was thrilled that Cleland had been accepted into the QCC as just the third and final site in Australia.
"South Australians already know that this national park is a beauty, but we are thrilled that it is now it is ranked alongside some of the other most beautiful and important natural places in the Commonwealth," she said.
"Being added to the Queen’s Commonwealth Canopy will further enhance the ongoing conservation activities at the national park, ensuring Cleland remains protected for future generations."