16.5 C
Byron Shire
May 20, 2022

Report follows Leda’s muddy tracks

Latest News

The floods are leaving people homeless and families split

There was a housing crisis on the Northern Rivers, then we had the floods of 2022 and the issue has left increasing numbers of people homeless and struggling to find alternative accommodation.

Other News

Vote Green

In response to John Jennings, Numinbah (12 May), ‘Who shall I vote for?’ Simple answer – The Greens. From...

One Nation ‘ghost’ haunting Richmond

Less than a week out from the election, mystery surrounds the One Nation candidate and her connection to the electorate.

A positive change for Bruns River

With the floods still on the mind of those impacted in the Shire’s north, a local charity and its partners have launched an interactive online map of the Brunswick River to raise awareness and hopefully bring it back to full health.

Implement reforms

In a recent heart-breaking article in The Saturday Paper discussed a 10-year-old Indigenous child’s incarceration in the notorious Don...

Radiance Kitchen

Victoria Cosford I can imagine how radiant the smiles were when Dexter Chou and Linda Hung resumed their stall recently...

Interviews with Richmond candidates 2022: Liberal Democrats Party candidate Gary Briggs

Gary Biggs lives in the Tweed Shire and owns a small business. He is running as a candidate for the Liberal Democrats Party in the federal seat of Richmond.

[author]Staff reporters[/author]

Leda drained wetlands and cut down koala habitat trees despite an interim protection order, according to an inquiry that triggered Tweed Shire Council’s sacking in 2005.

The report was critical of activities on Leda’s huge Kings Forest property which apparently went unpunished by authorities, including the pro-development council.

Inquiry head Maurice Daly said in his report that the Department of Environment outlined concerns about the council’s failure to take steps to stop ‘illegal clearing’ of the site.

He said the department spoke of its numerous submissions to both council and to Leda identifying the natural, scientific and cultural values of the land and advising that it had issued interim protection orders over the site.

‘Despite this, the department had become aware of further actions involving draining of sensitive wetlands and the clearing of threatened species habitat,’ Professor Daly said.

‘The department suggested delays on the part of the council in dealing with their concerns.’

Prof Daly cited evidence from a senior departmental officer who discovered during an on-site inspection that Leda was draining wetlands and had felled up to 80 native trees.

He also released an email outlining another officer’s concerns about the activities sent to the council chief planner, Noel Hodges, who later quit his post and worked as one of Leda’s consultants.

The officer told him that while Leda might argue existing use rights, it didn’t detract from the fact that the drainage works were likely to adversely impact on the wetlands’ ecosystems by ‘significant changes’ to the hydrology.

In an addendum to his second report, Prof Daly released more than 30 photographs taken on the site showing fallen koala-habitat trees, and bulldozers at work in wetland areas.

He said even after the council had been sacked, it had come to his attention that similar clearing work was continuing.

Neither the council nor the department could say if any action was later taken against the company but Leda has slammed Prof Daly’s comments and attacked one of the officers who gave evidence.

In its dossier sent to the council last month, Leda claimed that Prof Daly had never bothered to obtain evidence from the company.

It dismissed the evidence given by one of the officers as ‘completely at odds with the facts’.

‘Central to the inquiry’s findings detrimental to Leda has been the false, misleading and damaging evidence given by the department,’ the unauthored document claimed.

Support The Echo

Keeping the community together and the community voice loud and clear is what The Echo is about. More than ever we need your help to keep this voice alive and thriving in the community.

Like all businesses we are struggling to keep food on the table of all our local and hard working journalists, artists, sales, delivery and drudges who keep the news coming out to you both in the newspaper and online. If you can spare a few dollars a week – or maybe more – we would appreciate all the support you are able to give to keep the voice of independent, local journalism alive.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Richmond candidates 2022: Informed Medical Options Party candidate Monica Shepherd

Monica Shepherd is an organic naturopath based in Ocean Shores. She is running as a candidate for the Informed Medical Options Party in the federal seat of Richmond.

Storylines – Stop the rot and take action

Having spent a long time reflecting on the last 13 weeks since the floods devastated our region, many important issues have come to my attention – loss of homes, possessions, safety, schools suspended from flooding, chaos, death, loss of animals, extreme anxiety and desperation, and so much more.

Review of community response called for as challenges recognised

Local community members stepped forward to help coordinate and respond to the disaster; from people getting into boats and kayaks recusing strangers in Lismore to coordinating local response hubs in the hinterland and local towns. But it wasn't all a bed of roses.

$17m in funds for work on crown lands in NSW

If you are involved in managing crown reserve land and facilities then now is the time to get that application in for a share of the $17 million that is available fro the 2022-3 funding round.