Protestors gathered near Casino yesterday to voice their objections to the logging of Myrtle State Forest.
The logging of the forest, which is due to start any day, is not a plantation but a State-owned native forest, and the families gathered demanded that the trees be protected while the world’s climate is in crisis with bushfires devastating Australia earlier this year.
Vulnerable species such as the koala have lost vast areas of habitat in New South Wales recently, and spokesperson for the group Isabel Halse says it is vital to preserving what remains.
‘Myrtle State Forest is native bushland targeted for logging for timber sales by the NSW Forestry Corporation. It is estimated that 70-80% of the forest was burnt in last summer’s fires and that 75% of its resident koala population died.
‘A recent year-long state parliamentary investigation found that koalas will become extinct before 2050 in NSW unless there is urgent government intervention to prevent habitat loss.
Ms Halse said the group’s aim is to demand they leave the native forests alone in order to give the trees, the wildlife, the koalas, the soil a chance to recover.’
Over the past month or so, groups including Knitting Nannas against Gas, the Lismore Environment Centre, North East Forest Alliance and Extinction Rebellion Northern Rivers have been travelling to the area in small groups to bring attention to the controversial logging, while observing responsible social distancing measures.
‘Today parents and children from around the Northern Rivers region joined the ongoing protests, to highlight the importance of saving our precious ecosystems for ourselves and future generations.’
Families from Lismore, Ballina, Clunes and Byron Bay met from 10am and joined in with activities include searching for droppings and other signs of koala life, calling local politicians, and recorded videos for social media.
‘We sang songs, had a picnic, read books about koalas to the kids.’