OPINION: We’re paying to have our natural heritage trashed

DEAR News Of The Area,

ALL around our region, our irreplaceable native forests are being smashed as they struggle to recover from the Black Summer bushfires.

Forestry Corporation’s destructive operations have contributed to the ecological crisis we currently face.

Right now they seem to be hell bent on annihilating core koala habitat in a grab to pillage the forests before the up-coming election.

In the next twelve months, seventeen percent of state forests in our area are slated for intensive logging.

Only four to eight percent of this timber is turned into sawn logs; much is burned on the forest floor or shipped to China as wood chips.

Is it worth driving the koala to extinction for this?

Mature native forests alone can sequester the carbon needed to mitigate the worst effects of climate change and are less flammable.

They also assist in climate moderation, maintaining soil quality and clean waterways and provide vital rich biodiversity.

Meanwhile, we taxpayers are paying the bill for the destruction of our natural heritage.

In the past four years, we’ve forked out $107.7 million to cover the losses of this industry.

A just transition package for affected timber workers would cost little more.

We already derive most of our timber needs from sustainable plantations, which run at a profit.

So, who does profit from the current system?

Is it that the corporations who benefit pay political donations to the parties who are willing to rip us off and devastate nature so they can spend up big on their election campaigns?

I cannot agree with Col Nicholson (Letters, News of the Area, 7 March) in his defence of the RFAs.

The NSW Audit Office, the Natural Resources Commission and the NSW Government’s vegetation clearing figures all confirm a regulatory failure to achieve environmental outcomes.

The Greens and The Animal Justice Party want to protect our native forests and they are not corrupted by the corporate donations game.

On 25 March, vote for our ecosystems, our forests and our wildlife.

Eungai Creek.

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