Koala Protection in NSW: how our most valued native animal is abused

Gary Dunnett, Executive Officer, NPA NSW

The koala populations of NSW were decimated during the first quarter of the 20th century by commercial hunting for the fur trade.  Many local populations were pushed towards or into extinction.  We’re now nearly a hundred years since the peak of commercial hunting and many areas, especially in the south-eastern corner of the State, remain largely bereft of koalas.  In other places, especially those with limited accessibility, such as the military lands in southwestern Sydney and the dense forests of the northeast, koala populations staged major recoveries after the cessation of commercial harvesting.   

Unfortunately, that recovery had largely come to an end by the 1970s as habitat loss from coastal development, agricultural clearing and forestry, along with increasing mortality due to collisions with motor vehicles, dog attacks and infectious diseases, all took their toll on local koala populations.  The result is that, as we approached 2021, the NSW Upper House Inquiry into the future of koalas in NSW concluded that, without significant change in the way we protect koalas and their habitats, the species will become functionally extinct (ie incapable of maintaining viable local populations) in NSW within the next 50 years.  

National Party’s war on Koalas escalates

The National Parks Association of NSW (NPA) has expressed outrage at documents published by the ABC showing direct intervention by NSW National Party Leader, John Barilaro through the Regional NSW Department to allow logging back into forests heavily impacted by the bushfires. 

A Chipmill and the Beginning of the Forest Wars

John Blay, writer and naturalist

Like it or not the enormous pile of woodchips across the Twofold Bay from Eden casts a darker shadow over the south east region today than it did in 1969 when the mill commenced operations.

June State Council Meeting

NPA held its June State Council meeting at Laurieton, hosted by the Mid North Coast Branch. On the Sunday members participated in various tours of the region. The photos below taken by NPA Executive Officer, Gary Dunnett. The first place we visited was the site of a recent logging operation in Lorne State Forest. This was followed by a tour of a former Flora Reserve which is now incorporated into the adjacent Bago Bluff National Park.

Premier Berejiklian must defend our parks – rule out logging Murray Valley National Park

Conservation groups are calling on Premier Gladys Berejiklian to rule out opening any national parks to extractive industries.

NSW Deputy Premier and National Party leader John Barilaro has vowed to introduce legislation degazette Murray Valley National Park in the state’s Riverina region and to re-open the forests for logging. [1]