Save habitat to save Koalas

MEDIA RELEASE 29 September 2022

To mark Save the Koala Day (Friday 30 September), the North East Forest Alliance is appealing to the NSW Government to stop approving core Koala habitat for clearing and logging, if they have any genuine intent to stop Koalas becoming extinct in the wild by 2050.

The NSW Government’s spending of tens of millions on Koala hospitals, open range zoos and planting seedlings won’t stop Koalas becoming extinct in the wild unless they save and stabilise surviving Koalas by protecting their existing homes, NEFA spokesperson Dailan Pugh said.

“Every day the NSW Government is allowing the Forestry Corporation to cut down mature Koala feed trees in public forests, and farmers to bulldoze them, while their propaganda arm goes into over-drive pretending that Koalas don’t need their feed trees.

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NEFA welcomes Industry Inquiry

MEDIA RELEASE 15 September 2022

While not agreeing with all its findings, NEFA welcomes the report of the ‘Inquiry into the long term sustainability and future of the timber and forest products industry’ released this afternoon as making a contribution to the debate over the future of public native forests, and making some worthwhile findings and recommendations.

“Given the narrow industry-focussed terms of reference for the inquiry it did not give due consideration to the impacts of logging on public native forests and alternative uses“ NEFA spokesperson Dailan Pugh said.

“Though its recommendation for a cost benefit assessment of the native hardwood forestry sector to consider the most beneficial use of public native forests is supported.

“There is no doubt that there are far greater financial and societal benefits to the community from protecting public forests for carbon sequestration, recreation, tourism, water supply, and habitat.

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Time to stop logging habitat of Endangered Pugh’s Frog

With Pugh’s Frog (Philoria pughi) about to be listed as nationally Endangered, the North East Forest Alliance is calling on Federal Environment Minister Tanya Plibersek to change the Regional Forest Agreement to protect its habitat from logging.

Pugh’s Frog inhabits soaks and seepages in the highest headwaters of streams on the Gibraltar Range and in the Timbarra and Girard areas, during the breeding season it constructs nests in mud under leaf litter where it raises its young watered by seepage. They live a sedentary life, outside the breeding season they will forage amongst leaf litter, mostly within a hundred metres of their nests.

“It is an old endemic, tracing its lineage back over 50 million years to the Gondwana super continent, though a few million years ago the Philoria genus became increasingly marooned on isolated mountain top islands, where they evolved into distinct species” NEFA spokesperson Dailan Pugh said.

Photo: Stephen Mahony

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Federal Gov’t Falls at First Forest Hurdle

Media Release August 31, 2022

North coast conservationists are dismayed, that the Albanese Federal Government have failed to seize the opportunity to exclude wood from native forests being used as a substitute for coal and classed as ‘renewable energy’.

A Senate Committee report released this afternoon that investigated potential amendments to the Climate Change legislation, has recommended that using forest wood should be further investigated, but not taken the opportunity to rule it out at the outset.

“How much more investigation is needed” asked North Coast Environment Council Vice-President, Susie Russell.

The recent NSW parliamentary inquiry into ‘Sustainability of energy supply and resources in New South Wales’ found:

 steps must be taken to ensure [the burning of forest biomass for power generation] doesn't become a major energy source, and that it's not eligible for renewable energy credits. It's not economically or environmentally sustainable, and it generates significant carbon emissions.

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Converting Koala habitat to plantations has to stop

MEDIA RELEASE 22 August 2022

NEFA is calling on the NSW Government to stop the Forestry Corporation clearfelling 68 ha of some of the best known koala habitat in NSW and converting it into a plantation in Wild Cattle Creek State Forest.

At the same time the NSW Government is spending millions of dollars buying private land for koalas and planting trees, on public land they are paying millions to log and clear koala habitat identified as a priority for protection by their own government, NEFA spokesperson Dailan Pugh said.

“This has to stop if we want koalas to survive.

“It is well past time the NSW Government stopped logging koala habitat on public lands and stopped converting it to plantations, if they have any real intent to save them from extinction

Is this any way to treat native forest

Is this any way to treat native forests?

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Kyogle: Gateway to the World Heritage Rainforest?

Recently the Kyogle environment Group bought it to my attention, that Private Native Forestry logging was taking place along the entrance to the World Heritage Listed Border Ranges National Park. Ironically enough, Kyogle LGA is know as the ‘Gateway to the Rainforest’. It’s our biggest tourist attraction.

How many visitors to our region drive past this logging, just metres from the National Park, to enjoy these iconic parks which form part of the Gondwana Rainforest?

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Call for Forestry Corporation Excesses of the Past to End

Community call to action to protect Oakes State Forest … Again!

The Nambucca and Bellingen Community has stood up for its headwater public native forests before.   Oakes State Forest is now threatened again. This is a call to action to join the effort to protect these steep, upriver public native forests, that stabilise the land, provide clean water, a refuge for threatened species such as the koala and mitigate against climate change. 

Read below about the history of past campaigns to protect these amazing forests   and why they need us all to join together to protect them … again!

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Real Law-breakers Must be Stopped

North coast conservationists are shocked and alarmed at footage of the devastation being wrought in Ellis State Forest south of Grafton.

Investigations over the weekend documented dozens of breaches of the logging rules, including several giant trees felled and koala and habitat trees seriously damaged.

We have notified the EPA and they will carry out an inspection on Tuesday but unless they immediately issue a stop work order these serial offenders will be able to continue their reckless rampage through the giant old trees and koala habitat,” said North Coast Environment Council Vice-President, Susie Russell.

"The area clearly has many old growth trees. The Forestry Corporation uses LIDAR technology which enables them to see individual trees. They can pick out the areas where there are large trees left and target those.

The 2019/20 fires burnt through this forest. The oldest, largest trees were the best survivors, providing refuge for animal survivors. Now they are being killed, and the animals that depend on them will probably also die.

Citizen Scientists measure the damage being done to koala habitat by loggers

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Time to revoke Forestry Corporation’s Licence to Kill

MEDIA RELEASE 4 August 2022

NEFA is calling on the NSW Legislative Assembly when they vote next week to revoke the Forestry Corporation’s licence to kill threatened species after finding more wanton vandalism of Koala feed trees and Hollow-bearing trees in Wild Cattle Creek State Forest.

In just 3 hours last week in compartment 40 of Wild Cattle Creek State Forest, NEFA found 7 trees marked for retention as Koala Feed Trees and 13 old trees marked for protection as Hollow-bearing Trees that had been bashed by machinery or had trees dropped upon them, many of which won’t survive, NEFA spokesperson Dailan Pugh said.

“These are some of the few trees that legally required protection.

“This is not an isolated case, the Forestry Corporation were fined $285,600 in June for logging into a Koala High Use Area, rainforest and a rainforest buffer 4 km to the west, and last month the EPA announced they are prosecuting the Forestry Corporation for logging six Giant Trees and seven Hollow-bearing Trees 5 km to the south.

2 of the 20 Trees retained as both Hollow-bearing Trees and Koala Browse Trees that were recklessly damaged.

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MEDIA RELEASE: It's time! End native forest logging!

The vandalism of our forests must stop NOW!

Joint statement from the Forest Action Gathering convened in Bellingen July 30/31 2022

Meeting in Bellingen this weekend we, the representatives of dozens of environment groups make the following statement:  

We recognise that healthy forests are of unequivocal value to First Nations peoples and that forests  on public land form part of their unceded lands. We are honoured to have the support of many  Gumbaynggirr elders and custodians in our efforts to stop the destruction of country and be part of  the paradigm shift: from colonial exploitation to a duty of care for country

We understand that there are Climate and Extinction Emergencies and that the damning State of the  Environment Report highlighted that on nearly every measure our environment is deteriorating.  Forests are our life support systems and they are in crisis.  

We have recently seen the NSW Government logging agency fined hundreds of thousands of  dollars for breaches of logging licence conditions. Fines paid by the NSW people as are the many  millions of dollars paid in subsidies to the logging industry, while damage to the public estate is  unaccounted for. 

We call on our political representatives to exercise common sense and act on the now  overwhelming evidence and to stop the state sponsored destruction of the public's forests.  Complacency is catapulting Koalas and Greater Gliders towards extinction, along with many other  species of animals and plants. 

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