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Byron Shire
December 1, 2021

Stop logging steep slopes

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steep slope cable loggingOne of my New Year promises to myself this year is to be involved as much as I can in producing video, photography and website information that will aid conservation groups in protecting threatened species and our natural environment.

The North Coast Environment Council, the Northeast Forest Alliance and the Bellingen Environment Centre are starting a campaign to stop Forestry Corporation from a proposed trial of cable logging on steep slopes.

Forestry Corporation of NSW was determined by Justice Pepper to have a cavalier attitude towards compliance of regulations. Forestry Corporation is running out of trees in our native forests from over-logging and this over-logging is impacting our threatened species such as the koala.

They want to log steep slopes since their supply is running out but they only have to look back to an incident in 1992 to know this is a bad idea.

In the 1992 incident, the Department of Conservation and Land Management (CaLM) found that 88,140 tonnes of soil was eroded into the headwaters of the Bellinger River following a logging operation in Oakes State Forest.

The report stated, ‘if it was necessary to carry that tonnage out of the forest in trucks it would take 8,814 loads or, at one truck per hour over a 40 hour week, it would take over 7 months to remove that volume of fill’.

They were obviously appalled. This is just one documented case which shows the real and extreme risks of allowing activities which disturb soil and remove vegetation cover on the steep slopes of this area.

An outcome of this and other similar events was that logging was excluded from the steepest, most erodible and unstable slopes throughout NSW. The 30-degree slope limit was inaugurated even though soil scientists at the time were warning that 25 degrees was a more suitable limit.

The Stop Logging Steep Slopes Campaign is the first attempt by these conservation groups to use crowd funding to help us save our streams and forests in these catchment areas.

These groups are volunteer-based with people dedicating hours and years in protecting our environment from pollution, over-logging and inappropriate activities such as CSG. The efforts of these groups have given us a lot of the national parks we enjoy today.

I’m asking you to help us with a donation of $5 or whatever you are able to give so that we can reach our target. We are just over halfway there and I’d love to see this one reach its target. It will give the organisations a positive boost in achieving great environmental outcomes for NSW and the planet for that matter.

If you can’t afford to donate, then please send some positive thoughts our way as we try to encourage good environmental stewardship into the future. Please forward to anyone you think might be interested in joining our campaign.

To learn more about the project and donate please go to: https://rainforestconnections.org/projects/StopCableLogging

Jimmy Malecki, Stop Logging Steep Slopes Campaign 


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