A koala makes an appearance in Pioneer Park on the edge of Coffs Harbour CBD.
A koala makes an appearance in Pioneer Park on the edge of Coffs Harbour CBD. Trevor Veale

Council praised as NPA seeks government action on koalas

COFFS Harbour City Council is one of three Local Government Areas singled out for praise by the National Parks Association of NSW (NPA) for its initiatives for protecting koalas.

With the latest regional koala count winding up on November 22, the NPA says the three levels of government are failing to protect koalas.

However, a spokesperson said Coffs Harbour, Wingecarribee and Gunnedah are taking a stand to ensure we don’t lose our national icon.

“It’s a sad truth that the NSW and Federal governments don’t seem to care about koala conservation,” the spokesperson said.

“They are leaving the heavy lifting to cash-strapped community groups and non-governmental organisations.”

In 2011, a Senate review called The Koala - Saving Our National Icon made 19 recommendations with just four implemented since.

In that time the National Koala Conservation and Management Strategy Plan expired.

The NPA expressed concern that while Bellingen Shire Council was in the process of preparing it’s Comprehensive Koala Plan of Management required under state government law, the area of core koala habitat was reduced by 40% leaving it open to logging.

“What all this tells us is that we can’t rely on government to protect koalas for us.

“The community must take the initiative, talk to neighbours and protect koala habitat if you’re lucky enough to own some.

“Perhaps if we work together and put pressure on all levels of government we can save our icon.”



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