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November 30, 2022

Tree damaging complaints dismissed by EPA

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The North East Forest Alliance has expressed outrage at the NSW Environmental Protection Authority’s decision to dismiss its complaint about damage to a series of species supporting trees in the Wild Cattle Creek State Forest.

NEFA says it is ‘shocked’ that the EPA has dismissed all complaints that the Forestry Corporation caused excessive damage to 13 marked hollow-bearing trees and seven Koala browse trees in core Koala habitat in compartment 44 of the forest.

‘It is illegal to damage trees required to be retained, and this damage is blatantly obvious, yet the EPA claims it is not damage,’ NEFA spokesperson Dailan Pugh said.

‘Something is fundamentally rotten with logging regulation.’

Damaged trees in Compartment 44 of the Wild Cattle Creek State Forest. Image: NEFA

NEFA says that Compartment 44 was identified by the Office of Environment and Heritage for protection from logging as a highly significant area of koala occupancy, but the NSW Government neglected to protect it.

Instead the Forestry Corporation were allowed to log it subject to the requirements that eight hollow-bearing trees and 10 koala feed-tree species per hectare be retained.

‘During a brief assessment in July 2022, NEFA identified that most Koala feed trees had been logged, and many of those identified for retention had been damaged during logging,’ Mr Pugh said.

‘We reported the breaches to the EPA, asking them to provide clear guidance on what legally constitutes damage to retained trees.

But the EPA said that the damage sustained to each tree did not meet the definition of “damage” as defined in the CIFOA Protocols’.

‘l was shocked that according to the EPA the severe bashing of retained trees by machines that knocks off extensive slabs of basal bark, the crushing and severing of main roots, nor the knocking out of tree crowns by felling trees on them, constitute damage.

‘It is outrageous that hollow-bearing trees (which in this case are also mostly Koala feed trees) hundreds of years old, with hollows essential for survival of a plethora of our native species, are bashed and damaged with such reckless disregard by the Forestry Corporation, and the EPA do nothing about it.’


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6 COMMENTS

  1. Really what’s the problem in this emotive NEFA shock-horror story?
    I’ve seen aboriginal ‘shield trees’ in worse condition – but they went on to be healthy habitat older trees.

  2. Thank God we have you, dear Dailagn! Otherwise no one would know that this forest mismanagement goes on.
    Forestry Corp is running amok in our Native forests with government sanctioned clear felling the norm.
    Its Scary and upsetting for us, and life threatening, species devastation for our forests.

  3. The forestry Corp and EPA should be ashamed of themselves for letting damage to Koala feed trees hundreds of years and saying they are ok when they are not, it is a disgrace l do not understand the EPA letting the Forestry Corp get away with it. What is the NSW government doing about it, as usual nothing.

    • The EPA, is no such thing, it a misnomer. needs to rename itself to truly reflect its business – rename to ‘EDA’, Environment Destruction Authority.

  4. Something is fundamentally rotten with logging regulation..
    Something is fundamentally wrong with men who blatantly do this to trees

  5. Well, this is all in line with the Tree Butcher Party currently in government.
    And who will forget those now immortal words, “we put people before plants”.
    Feel free free to substitute that line , “we put people before Trees, Koala”- oh wait, we already knew that long, long ago, yes.

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