The National Party destroyers of the NSW environment may have scored a win with the childish foot-stomping by the Member for Monaro.
A BILL JUST went before the NSW Parliament that would exempt big agribusiness and property developers from koala protection laws in many circumstances.
The Nature Conservation Council has called on all state MPs to vote down a bill in the current session.
The government’s Local Land Services Amendment Bill, would prevent any further expansion of koala habitat protections into private farmland.
The bill is part of a deal between the Liberal and National parties to end an internal quarrel over koala protections that threatened the survival of the Coalition and the stability of the Berejiklian government (before the Premier did her own bit of destabilising recently).
It means property developers could bulldoze koala trees without needing an approval to do so. Nothing to do with real farming or forestry issues
“Nothing in this bill helps ensure koalas survive beyond 2050. But it does mean property developers could bulldoze koala trees without needing an approval to do so,” Nature Conservation Council Chief Executive Chris Gambian said.
RELATED: Bush and koalas found to be threatened by ‘gratuitous’ NSW land-clearing plan. State government proposal allows rural landholders to clear up to 25 metres from their fence line.
Barilaro, Berejiklian et al: me first!
“Basically, the Nationals gave the Liberals a choice between saving the Coalition or saving the koala and they chose themselves.
“Let’s be clear. The bill before NSW parliament has nothing to do with legitimate farming issues or private forestry issues. There has been a Koala SEPP in place for years.”
How the issue COULD be solved
“We accept that we need to support farmers who have the care of important bush. For example, Councils should be funded to develop high quality Koala Plans of Management, and small family farms should have the cost of surveys covered by the State.
“The answer is not trashing the Koala regulations.
“The National Party signed off on the SEPP last year. No one raised an eyebrow. All NSW MPs should distance themselves from this nonsense.
“The people of NSW want to see a shared plan for how we live in balance with nature — protecting species and natural heritage whilst carefully using the natural resources nature has provided us with.
“This is a time for leadership, not political expediency.”
IMAGE: Rescued koala post-fire in a sanctuary in Monaro region. Author supplied.