Federal government raises the white flag for Australia’s threatened species

Pseudo zoos and tokenistic gestures seem to be the vision for Australia’s wildlife, says the National Parks Association of NSW (NPA) on the Commonwealth’s new Threatened Species Strategy.

The strategy was announced by Environment Minister Greg Hunt at Australia’s first Threatened Species summit, held in Melbourne last Thursday (16th July).

New EPA proposals could be the tipping point for NSW’s koalas 

New proposals by the NSW Environment Protection Authority (EPA) to allow clear felling of large areas of forests on the North Coast could be the catalyst that tips the area’s koalas onto the extinction path, according to the National Parks Association of NSW (NPA).

NPA has joined other community groups to strongly condemn the EPA’s proposed changes to rules called IFOAs that govern logging activities. [1]

A future for native forests means leisure, not logging

Magnificent places under threat
Think about it. Huge tracts of spectacularly forested hills. Panoramic ocean views periodically peek through the canopy. Creeks lined with lush rainforest trickle down gullies providing pure, clear water to downstream anglers and oyster farmers. Breakfast in the eco-lodge is peaceful and relaxing. But for those seeking more energetic pursuits, the relaxation doesn’t last long! This is perfect terrain for mountain biking, orienteering, climbing, canyoning and adventure racing. An ancient landscape, not too steep like across the Tasman, but constantly undulating and changing form. Spectacular places to spend a weekend.

These are NSWs’ State Forests. Two million hectares of public land, the majority found between Bega and Ballina east of the Great Divide. Forests that contain the best landscapes outside National Parks. But native forest logging shuts us out of these forests and prevents us from maximising their public benefit. Sure, Forestry Corporation will claim that recreation is allowed in State Forests and that’s true. Until logging starts. At which point it’s everyone out. And, sorry about this, but your bike track now runs through carnage.

New Great Koala National Park planned to save Koala from extinction in NSW

Highly regarded conservation zoo, Australian Reptile Park on the Central Coast of NSW, is joining forces with National Parks Association of NSW to raise awareness and funds for the establishment of The Great Koala National Park.

This conservation initiative is strategically planned to protect what is arguably Australia’s national icon, the koala, as numbers continue to plummet in NSW state forests and protected land. The Great Koala National Park is proposed to be established by combining 175,000 ha of state forest with 140,000 ha of existing protected land in the Coffs Harbour region to form a 315,000 ha refuge for almost 20 percent of the state’s remaining wild koalas. 

Crowdfunding to conserve koalas

With habitat loss and fragmentation already having resulted in koalas disappearing from 75% of their former range in NSW, the National Parks Association of NSW (NPA) has turned to crowdfunding to support a strategic proposal aimed at conserving the state’s koalas.

In the absence of a state koala recovery plan, NPA in conjunction with several local community groups, has developed an ambitious proposal for a new national park dedicated to the conservation of the species.

IT’S TIME TO END THE FAILED REGIONAL FOREST AGREEMENTS  

The Regional Forest Agreements (RFAs) that govern logging in nearly 7 million hectares of state forests in NSW, Tasmania, Victoria and WA have failed in all their objectives and should be terminated when they expire over the next four years. That is the damning assessment by over 30 environmental groups in a statement released today.

“The RFAs commenced in the 1990s and did not take factors such as climate change into account” said Lorraine Bower of the Australian Forests and Climate Alliance (AFCA). “Now we know that forests are vital for moderating climate and storing carbon, and that logging significantly reduces carbon stores in forests.