Koalas 'face logging risk'
A FEDERAL senator has earmarked logging in Pine Creek Forest as an issue threatening the local population of koalas.
Senator Lee Rhiannon said the Federal Government must tighten koala protection laws to ensure koalas were not being placed at risk.
The concern comes after a report from Markets for Change tracking timber harvested by Forests NSW from local forests to a Boral sawmill in Kooklhan and to the timber used in Harvey Norman's Naturally Australian flooring range.
"If Harvey Norman and Forestry NSW are not protecting our precious koala habitats, as the report indicates, then the Federal Government must step in to ensure the recent threatened species listing for koalas is worth the paper it is written on," Sen Rhiannon said.
However, a spokesman for Forests NSW said appropriate measures had been taken to protect the koala population.
"Prior to harvesting, surveys were carried out as per the Threatened Species Licence, for a range of potential threatened species including frogs, bats, gliders, numerous plant species and, of course, koalas," the spokesman said.
"A further survey and marking of habitat features specifically targeting koalas was also undertaken by Forests NSW staff. Both of these surveys lead to additional protection measures for threatened species, on top of the standard conditions applicable under the threatened species licence."
The centre said a recent inspection revealed 100 metre spaces between trees in the riparian zones preventing koalas from connecting with Bongil Bongil National Park next door to the Pine Creek Forest.