Skip navigation

Pages tagged "koala"

Stokes and Liberals cave to Nationals pressure on koalas

The deal struck between the Liberals and the Nationals to minimise koala protections in rural areas will push the species to the brink.

“Excising farming and forestry zones from the koala SEPP is a catastrophic setback for the species,” Nature Conservation Council Chief Executive Chris Gambian said.

“These are where most of the koalas live and where most koala habitat destruction is happening right now.

“If you remove protections from these areas, you have basically given up on the species and signed its death warrant.”

Recent research shows that logging and land-clearing on forestry and agricultural land accounts for 90% of all koala habitat destruction. [1] 

The new deal between the Liberals and the Nationals puts rural and forestry lands out of reach of the koala SEPP.  

“Planning Minister Rob Stokes’ policy of appeasement has given Nationals Leader John Barilaro everything he wanted,” Mr Gambian said.

“Big agribusiness and property developers will be popping champagne corks tonight.

“This policy makes a mockery of the government's claim it plans to double koala numbers by 2050. This policy will only serve to speed up koala extinction. 

“This is a backroom deal, where once again koalas are the big losers. 

“But the people of NSW will not cop the loss of koalas and destruction of koala habitat. We will fight this measure all the way to polling day if need be.”

References

[1] Logging 62%, land clearing 28%, Development 10% - WWF. WWF-Australia (2020), Another 37 million Australian animals could be lost next decade if the government fails to properly enforce national environment laws.

 


Wide consultation is key to koala conservation

The Nature Conservation Council urges the NSW Government to consult widely when drafting its new koala planning policy. 

It has been reported that Environment Minister Matt Kean and Deputy Premier Nationals Leader John Barilaro are working on a new deal to protect koalas that includes paying farmers to conserve koala habitat. [1] 

“We welcome anything and everything that is going enhance protections for koalas,” Nature Conservation Council Chief Executive Chris Gambian said. 

“Unfortunately, last time a few players drafted the policy on the back of the envelope without consulting widely and that led to problems.   

“All stakeholders need confidence in a new koala policy, so it is essential that they are all invited to the table: farmers, scientists, local government, conservationists. 

“We are ready to work with everyone, especially the farmers, to find a way forward that is based on the very best science to ensure koalas have a future. 

“To ensure a just and durable outcome, the solution must be tailored for different circumstances. 

“All landscapes are different, region by region, so we need plans that make sense for each region. 

“By adopting a science-based, regional approach with wide consultation we can take the politics out of this issue and get the outcome we all desire – a doubling of koala numbers.” 

References 

[1] https://www.smh.com.au/national/nsw/cash-for-koalas-nsw-government-considers-paying-farmers-to-preserve-habitat-20201221-p56pc1.html 

  

MEDIA CONTACT: James Tremain | 0419 272 254