The cost of weed removal has been on the rise in Australia
, now amounting to AUS$13 million (US$9.7 million) a day. The Australian Centre For Invasive Species Solutions estimates
that in 2018, close to AUS$5 billion (US$3.5 billion) were spent on removing unwanted wild plants clogging up fields, pastures and public spaces. Especially agriculture businesses are burdened with the removal and shouldered 96.7 percent of the cost.
Invasive and non-native species are a costly threat not only to the environment, but also to business. Not only do farmers have to pay for the removal of weeds, but the space weeds take up before removal also reduces productivity. Despite the large-scale efforts, the Australian government estimates that weeds are spreading faster throughout Australia than they can be controlled. Already, non-native plants account for 15 percent of all Australian flora.
Weeds typically produce a lot of seeds and therefore spread faster than other plants. Human activity as well as livestock, overfertilization or the presence of introduced species like rabbits in an area can also contribute to the explosive growth of unwanted weeds.