‘Alarming’ rates of deforestation on the North Coast
THE North Coast has witnessed a spike in ‘unexplained’ land clearing according to new data from the Energy, Environment and Science division of the NSW Government.
Unexplained clearings are defined as other clearing detected that has not been associated with an authorisation’, with unexplained clearings on the North Coast rising 443 in August 2017 to 737 in 2018.
In 2017, the NSW Government commenced changes to Biodiversity Conservation Act 2016 and amendments to the Local Land Services Act 2013.
Independent MP Justin Field labelled the reforms ‘destructive’ in light of the recent report.
“Here is yet another report showing the rampant deforestation that has occurred as a result of the National Party’s destructive biodiversity and land clearing reform,” Mr Field said.
Nature Conservation Council chairman Chris Gambian said the amount of land clearing would have a significant impact on wildlife.
“This punch in the guts comes just one day after we learned koalas face extinction by 2050 if we don’t stop cutting down their forests,” Mr Gambian said.
“The data shows there has been only one winner and hasn’t been koalas or nature,” Mr Gambian said.
“There is little wonder we face the extinction of the koala in NSW if this level of deforestation is being allowed under the Berejiklian Government. If we are to take the Premier at her word that she wants to be the Premier who saves the koala she is going to have to stop the massive deforestation is NSW,” Mr Field said.
Mr Gambian said the NSW Government should consider overhauling the laws which enable this vast amount of land clearing.
“The Coalition promised that its Biodiversity Conservation Act would be good for nature and good for big agribusiness,” Mr Gambian said.
“The NSW Government’s so-called land clearing reforms have set us on a dangerous path. These laws must be overhauled,” Mr Gambian said.