The strategic location of the Torres Strait places it at risk from the impacts of shipping, mining, resource over-exploitation, increasing tropical diseases and climate change.

Recent research (Bohensky et al, 2014) has identified a range of factors influencing the region’s natural and cultural values, including:

  • potential loss of culture and weakening of Ailan Kastom and Aboriginal Lore/Law
  • climate change
  • energy security
  • changing economic circumstances and rising costs of living
  • PNG population growth and demand for resources
  • natural resources extraction and infrastructure development impacts (especially in PNG’s Western Province)
  • exploitation of shared Torres Strait resources
  • increased shipping and marine pollution
  • changing technologies
  • local resource exploitation
  • emerging tropical diseases and pests
  • poor waste management.