19.7 C
Byron Shire
November 30, 2021

Cr Longland and Tweed Coast koalas

Latest News

Flood warning for Richmond and Wilsons Rivers

A deepening low pressure trough through the northeast of the state is expected to bring rain and thunderstorms during Tuesday and Wednesday, according to the State Emergency Service.

Other News

Thousands gather at Ballina MMAMV rally

Around 2,500 gathered at Missingham Park in Ballina to hear MMAMV speakers before marching to the Ballina police station and then making their way back to the starting point for more speakers.

Bangalow venues in need of financial help

Two of the Shire’s most well-known community spaces have come cap-in-hand to Byron Council, after suffering major income losses as a result of COVID-related public health orders.

Leigh Thomas says political affiliations not relevant to Council decision making

Leigh Thomas is the lead candidate for Group M running in the upcoming Tweed Shire Council elections. Mr Thomas...

Developers’ boon

Ballina is experiencing both a housing boom and skyrocketing prices. The developers must be loving it. But unless you’re...

COVID update – Aquarius, Lismore sewage fragments and the South African variant

The Northern NSW Local Health District says there have been no new cases of COVID-19 reported in the 24 hours to 8pm 28 November, but, they are urging residents in the Lismore area to be alert for COVID-19 symptoms.

Sale of St Oswald’s

To my utter disbelief the Grafton Diocese has decided it should sell the St Oswald’s church building and land....

If anyone wants an insight into Tweed shire Cr Barry Longland, they should read his letter to Echonetdaily of  22 February.

Why is Barry surprised that a petition is directed to him, when he has done more to threaten the Tweed Coast koala colonies than any other councillor?

We all knew how Shrek the Donkey and Princess Fiona would vote from the time they were elected. Likewise with the other two (it was three… ).  Barry, on the other hand, conned everyone. He supposedly stood for reasonable, responsible development – which in part meant protecting our koalas and wider environment. But in practice, he seems to have just chased a favourable headline.

He claims to have been ‘associated’ with ‘many koala protection achievements’.

Really? We all remember the years of campaigning for koala protection at Kings Forest – in particular for it to have a dog ban. When the chance came in 2012 for council to support a ban Barry voted against the measure.

It took another year and intense community pressure for the dog-ban measure to be considered again. This time Barry flipped back and voted for it in an appeal to the federal government on Kings Forest. Too little too late. We know how that ends.

He claims to have ‘launched’ the Koala Connections program, but that had nothing to do with Barry.

Years of work went into this initiative by individuals who used to work in Tweed Shire Council’s Natural Resources Management Unit. Sally Jacka deserves the credit. The scheme was later expanded with federal funding. Barry issued a press release. Thanks Barry.

The bottom line is that Tweed Coast koala numbers are crashing. So how well does Barry appreciate the seriousness of the situation? Read his letter. It’s like watching words commit suicide.

He breezes over the pressing issue of koala survival in the Tweed with a statement that is at best complete fantasy: ‘Prior to [this man] arriving on the Tweed, (2010) the good people of the lower Tweed Coast lived in complete harmony with koalas’.

Unfortunately, the seminal study says that in the decade prior to 2010 koala numbers on the coast had been reduced ‘to a level that was precarious’. (He must have a different definition of ‘complete harmony’ to me.)

He describes the Black Rocks koalas as being ‘stable’.  The study actually says the Tweed Coast koala population ‘remains at high risk of extinction’. The study uses the word ‘stable’ only in comparison to the other two koala populations on the coast which are crashing.

He then tries to defend his recent actions to remove a koala protection measure by creating a gap in the ‘koala-proof fence’ at Black Rocks.  This was against known best practice and against the advice of council’s own koala advisers. (This is Barry’s idea of koala ‘protection’, people.)

But the aspect that really shows the true Barry is his attack on ‘this man’ and making slurs about his motives. Even those who disagree with ‘this man’ have no doubt about the honesty and passion with which he presses his views.

Barry then complains about him ‘bombarding… council with claims of imminent extinction for the koalas of Black Rocks’?  What’s the problem, Barry? Council’s own study has a similar prognosis.

Finally, Barry’s petulance (David Keenan anyone?) is shown by foreshadowing a referendum of postcode 2489 as to their attitudes. Geez, Barry, you just don’t get it, do you? This is a Shire asset – in fact, a State and national asset. We all get to have a say.  Otherwise, someone from – oh, I don’t know – Uki? – wouldn’t have a right to say anything.

So why is it personal to you, Barry? Simple. It is difficult to identify any other person who will deserve more credit for the looming extinction of Tweed Coast koalas.  Get used to it.

T Clark, Nunderi


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.

1 COMMENT

  1. Exactly T Clark.
    Barry Longland’s strategy to play the man not the facts shows a lack of integrity, lowest form of debate…that is the mentality of the bully.
    Koalas must have protected wildlife corridors & local habitats to breed if they are going to beat extinction on the Tweed.
    Bet Barry wouldnt like random motor bikes cars dogs humans… coming into his yard every day. Lock the gate Barry!

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Storms and rain for Tuesday and Wednesday in the Northern Rivers

The Bureau of Meteorology (BoM) is predicting widespread thunderstorms and rain for the Northern Rivers.

Byron candidates 2021 Q&A part 2

Buckle in, seats upright, and loosen the belt!  It’s time to see what candidates have to say – in full – about our collective issues...

COVID update – Aquarius, Lismore sewage fragments and the South African variant

The Northern NSW Local Health District says there have been no new cases of COVID-19 reported in the 24 hours to 8pm 28 November, but, they are urging residents in the Lismore area to be alert for COVID-19 symptoms.

Last chance for tickets to Byron Shire Council Meet the Candidates forum

Today is your last chance to get tickets to tonight’s Byron Shire Meet the Candidates forum in the Byron Theatre.