Pepe Clarke of the Nature Conservation Council of NSW briefs conservation campaigners on the ‘Natural Advantage’ State Election platform.
Pepe Clarke of the Nature Conservation Council of NSW briefs conservation campaigners on the ‘Natural Advantage’ State Election platform.

Natural selection could sway polls

CONSERVATION groups are pushing their agendas ahead of next month’s State Election and high on the wish list is a review of Part 3A development approvals.

Six environmentally conscience groups have produced an extensive document titled ‘Natural Advantage’.

Nature Conservation Council of NSW chief executive Pepe Clarke briefed the local heads of environmental organisations in Coffs Harbour at the weekend.

Of greatest concern at the meeting were fears that a residential development proposed for land at South Moonee Forest could be approved by the State Government under the Part 3A special project legislation.

“The key issues outlined in our election platform are issues that have gained broad and enduring public support for action to protect the environment,” Mr Clarke said.

“The South Moonee Forest is a classic example of a development that has generated strong public reaction and could be approved by the NSW Planning Minister using the Part 3A approval process.

“South Moonee Forest is a site of remarkable conservation significance and needs to be managed in a sustainable way.

“The main problem with the Part 3A legislation is that when it was introduced it was said it would be used for projects of ‘state significance’. A 25-lot residential sub division does not fall under such significance.” He said the Coalition had committed to a review of the Part 3A laws, but that could take time meaning controversial developments could be approved even after a change in government.

Natural Advantage a 22-page document is authorised by the Nature Conservation Council of NSW, the National Parks Association, the Total Environment Centre, the Wilderness Society, the Blue Mountains Conservation Society and the Colog Foundation for Wilderness.



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