17.9 C
Byron Shire
May 16, 2021

Premier urged to stop koala-habitat logging near Bellingen

Latest News

Bluesfest announces October dates for 2021 festival

After two disappointing cancelations of their event, Bluesfest has announced that they will hold the 2021 festival over the...

Other News

OCA a ‘diamond in the rough’

Around four years ago a group of like-minded friends started a Syntropic Farm project. Since that time, they have...

Free mental health workshop for Byron businesses

Business owners in Byron Shire are invited to attend a free 'Healthy Mindset' workshop aimed at providing them with resources and tools to improve mental health and wellbeing, as well as the opportunity to connect with other business owners.

School Strike for Climate next Friday

Next Friday from 10am Byron Shire students will be demanding political action on the climate emergency in what they and their supporters say is our present, future and reality. 

Flickerfest tour returns to the Northern Rivers

Celebrating 30 years in 2021 Flickerfest is bringing its National Tour to The Regent Cinema Murwillumbah for one big film packed this weekend

Go straight to the source on the Future Water Project

Rous County Council has announced a series of information days to be held this month where the community can ‘drop in’ and find out more about the revised draft Future Water Project 2060.

Power outage in Byron Shire

Power supply company Essential Energy says that approximately 1,780 homes and businesses were without supply this morning.

Eight NSW environment groups have written to the NSW Premier urging her to intervene to protect an area of Gladstone State Forest, near Bellingen, vital to the protection of koalas in NSW.

Logging operations are planned in Gladstone State Forest where hundreds of koala scats were found by community groups in July and August 2017.

The groups say the planned logging operations, on top of operations carried out in August 2017, highlight how the regulation of public native forests is failing to protect koalas.

A National Parks Association spokesperson said that ‘despite Forestry Corporation’s own ecologists finding extensive evidence of koala scats, and the hundreds of scats found last August by members of the Bellingen Environment Centre and Kalang River Forest Alliance, no steps have been taken to protect Gladstone’s koalas’.

‘Polling in the north coast seats of Ballina and Lismore in December 2017 showed people were very aware of the plight of koalas, and highly supportive of new national parks for their protection,’ the spokesperson said.

North East Forest Alliance’s Dailan Pugh said ‘koala populations on the north coast have declined 50  per cent  in the past two decades’.

‘Logging has been proven to be contributing to this decline. We must protect the remaining breeding colonies to give koalas a fighting chance,’ Mr Pugh said.

‘Gladstone has been found to support a significant koala population, including a mother and her joey. This core koala habitat needs to be protected.’

Nambucca Valley Conservation Association spokesperson Lyn Orrego said ‘the state government has allowed Forestry Corporation to undertake intensive, clearfell logging, not valid under logging rules, of 23,000 hectares of high-quality koala habitat in our north coast public native forests over the past 10 years’.

‘We implore the premier to take seriously our request for a stay of execution for the koalas of Gladstone State Forest,’ Ms Orrego said.

‘Unprecedented high levels of evidence of breeding koala populations in Gladstone State Forest have been found.’

Bellingen Environment Centre spokesperson Ashley Love said ‘this is exceptional evidence of occupancy and demonstrates this area of forest is entirely unsuitable for logging’.

‘Forestry Corporation’s own ecologists have identified the importance of this area for koalas, yet no protections have been put in place. The premier must intervene,’ he said.

Frances Pike of the Australian Forests and Climate Alliance saidnot only is our forest wildlife getting hammered by logging, it is driving climate change too’.

‘Forests are the best technology we have for drawing down carbon dioxide, and this is recognised in the Paris Agreement.

‘The government can’t credibly claim they’re tackling climate change when they’re sanctioning industrialised logging,’ she said.

NSW National Parks Association Senior Ecologist Dr Oisín Sweeney said ‘this is clear evidence the logging laws are broken beyond repair and are failing to protect koalas’.

‘The government should use the end of the Regional Forest Agreements to protect koala habitat before we see more local extinctions.’

 

Previous articleFood with a different view
Next articleHealthy lunches

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.

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Power outage in Byron Shire

Power supply company Essential Energy says that approximately 1,780 homes and businesses were without supply this morning.

Filming of Byron Baes begins with no indigenous consultation

Filming of the Netflix series Byron Baes has reportedly commenced without any effort made by the show's production company – Eureka Productions – to consult with local indigenous groups or the local Council.

Byron Comedy Festival launched with a laugh

At a hilarious sold-out launch of the Byron Comedy Festival, Dr Karl Kruszelnicki had the entire Byron Bay Surf Club giggling last night

School Strike for Climate next Friday

Next Friday from 10am Byron Shire students will be demanding political action on the climate emergency in what they and their supporters say is our present, future and reality.