Limpinwood residents have been raising concerns regarding the logging that has commenced on over 800 acres of highly significant native forest that is affecting koalas. The land is owned by Hewittville Holdings and is believed to be part of a private native forestry plan with the EPA.
‘Neighbours are worried for wildlife as koala distress calls have been heard since logging began,’ said Scott Sledge, spokesperson for the Northern Rivers Guardians.
‘A koala has been found on an adjacent property that hasn’t had koalas in the last 25 years. It is suspected the koala fled the tree felling operations and there are signs of possible injury.’
Tweed Shire Council voted unanimously on the mayoral minute calling for the state government to do a compliance audit of the operation in regard to environmental and cultural heritage values, and give ‘serious consideration to revoking this logging licence.’
Some of the land has large stands of koala habitat and part of it is listed as an Environmental Protection Zone.
Dailan Pugh of the North East Forest Alliance said, ‘the Tweed LEP 2000 shows a significant part of the property is Zoned 7 (d) Environmental Protection (Scenic/Escarpment) and 7(l) Environmental Protection (Habitat), logging of these areas is only allowed with consent of Council’.
In a letter to Liberal MP Gabrielle Upton, Tweed mayor Katie Milne highlighted that the ‘landowner has previously undertaken extensive unauthorised works on two separate occasions, bulldozing vegetation on Crown Land to both the northern and southern accesses of the property without consent, and causing serious environmental damage on both occasions…
‘We would like to request that the state government finds a way to end this inappropriate logging operation, such as by cancelling or buying back this licence. This operator has clearly demonstrated they are not a responsible custodian of the land and cannot be trusted to act in the good faith that is essential for the Forestry Code of Conduct to operate properly.’
Echonetdaily has sent questions sent to the EPA and Gabrielle Upton regarding this matter.