News

Nationals: Koala National Park bad news for timber industry

Nationals Legislative Council member Rick Colless claims a Labor policy of a 315,000ha Great Koala National Park would prove costly to the timber industry.
Nationals Legislative Council member Rick Colless claims a Labor policy of a 315,000ha Great Koala National Park would prove costly to the timber industry. Contributed

THE State Opposition's policy of creating a Great Koala National Park around the Coffs Coast has come under expected fire from the NSW Government.

Member of the Legislative Council Rick Colless, a Nationals member from New England is the Chair of the NSW Forestry Industries Taskforce and he said the policy announcement by Opposition Leader Luke Foley will prove costly to the timber industry.

"Labor's proposal would remove another 100,000 cubic metres of high quality sawlogs from the North Coast timber industry, a reduction of 44% from an already highly stressed industry," Mr Colless said.

"The NSW North Coast simply cannot afford to lose another 3,000 forestry jobs."

The Labor Party has made a pre-election promise to create a 315,000 hectare Great Koala National Park in the north of the state that would protect 20% of NSW's koala population.

The plan includes 140,000 hectares of existing National Park, plus the addition of 176,000 hectares of State Forest that would no longer be available for logging.

Mr Colless, appointed in May by the NSW Minister for Primary Industries Katrina Hodgkinson to be Chair of the taskforce, called on his more than a quarter of a century as a soil conservationist and agronomist to offer ideas as to how the large tract of land mainly from Kempsey to Woolgoolga could be better used.

"To better protect koalas and other threatened species, we need better management of all land, irrespective of its tenure, rather than simply putting a fence around another 315,000 hectares of forest," he said.

Mr Colless refuted Mr Foley's claims that creating a Great Koala National Park would be a minimal cost policy.

"The Opposition Leader claims no expenditure is necessary to turn state forest into national park, but also said Labor would compensate companies to buy back timber allocations," Mr Colless said.

"The accompanying loss of timber royalties to the NSW Government, the loss of jobs to the timber workers and the loss of jobs in the associated industries will be a huge cost to our North Coast communities.

"What is required is an improved landscape management model across all land, rather than locking up huge tracts of land allowing fuel hazards to build up and put koalas at risk from wildfire.

"This is a kneejerk policy from Labor and reflects the environmental ideology of the 1980s. Land management has moved on from ideology and Luke Foley should snap out of the time warp he finds himself in."

 

Topics:  great koala national park, luke foley



Migaloo delights local whale watchers

Migaloo the white whale was spotted off the Coast Coast on Sunday afternoon.

MIGALOO the white whale has been spotted off the Coffs Coast

Two men allegedly bash cop car with axe handles

Grafton Courthouse.

Police say the men threatened an officer before bashing the car

Dreamtime story is re-told

COLOURFUL TALE: Local artists Ash Johnson and Alana X helped paint the murals along the track.

Dreamtime stories re-told by creative minds

Latest deals and offers

Shannen Doherty shaves hair during cancer battle

Shannen Doherty has completely shaved off her hair

Brian McFadden makes daughters pay for own Christmas gifts

McFadden makes his daughters pay for half their presents

Lady Gaga is a godmother

Lady Gaga has become a godmother to her friends' daughter

Will Turbo be taken off TV?

Memes about Turbo are flowing on Social media.

PEOPLE want Turbo taken off TV, but will Prospero Productions the ma

Police charge in after Lohan claims fiance tried to kill her

"You tried to kill me. You're a f*****g psycho".

Prince Harry regrets not talking about Diana's death

Diana, Princess of Wales, enjoys a ride on the Maid of Mist in Niagara Falls, Ont., in this Oct., 1991, with her sons Prince Harry, then 7, and Prince William, then 9.

The royal was 12 years old when his mother was killed

You can own this Queensland town for just $1

Yelarbon

Unprecedented auction of town's business centre with no reserve

Work starts on $15M Caloundra apartment building

Turning the first sod at the Aqua View Apartments site in Kings Beach are (from left) husband-and-wife developers Alex Yuan and Stella Sun with construction company Tomkins director Mike Tomkins and Councillor Tim Dwyer.

Developers excited about addition to Kings Beach skyline

Plans revealed for 1500-lot 'master-planned community'

Precinct will be bounded by Boundary St and Shoesmith Rd

Ecco Ripley sales run sparks prime release

MOVING IN: Sekisui House has announced the release of more residential blocks at Ecco Ripley.

Sekisui House is preparing to unveil more land at Ecco Ripley

A home rich in history looking for a new owner

HISTORY: The circa 1920s home is being sold for the first time in 90 years.

Circa 1920s home being sold for the first time in 90 years