25 January, 2012

Forestry stand-off moves north

Narooma News, 25 Jan, 2012

FORESTS NSW has asked police to investigate thefts and vandalism to a logging contractor’s machinery near Batemans Bay over the weekend.

Forests NSW Southern Region manager Daniel Tuan said the thefts of radios, tools, GPS equipment and other material worth thousands of dollars had taken place in Boyne State Forest on Friday night and was discovered on Saturday.

LOGGING AREA: Protestors attached cables to logging equipment in the Boyne State Forest near Batemans Bay. Photo courtesy SEFR

On Sunday night vandals broke into the same four pieces of machinery and set off fire protection equipment.

“These thefts of essential and expensive equipment can be a lasting setback to forestry operators,” Mr Tuan said.

“UHF radios are an essential operating and safety measure.

“Operators of these pieces of heavy machinery have to be aware of each other and visitors to the workplace.

“The GPS equipment is used to help the contractors comply with the exacting operating procedures they work under to ensure they are harvesting in an environmentally sustainable manner.

“The loss of time in replacing this equipment, as well as the cost, is a major impost on their operating budget and a setback to Forests NSW which needs to supply timber to its customers.”

Mr Tuan said the vandalism of the fire protection units was also a risk to operator health and safety in a difficult workplace environment.

Forests NSW is harvesting spotted gum sawlogs from Boyne State Forest for the local sawmill industry.

There is a long history of harvesting in the area.

In solidarity with Victorian conservationists in the Central Highlands, protestors from South East Forest Rescue (SEFR) last week claim to have halted logging operations Boyne State Forest north of Batemans Bay.

The conservation group claims to have found more illegal logging in Compartment 99 and is calling for an end to native forest logging on public land.
Their action saw four logging machines attached by high tensile steel cable to a structure in a tree 20 metres off the ground, and a banner stating “Carbon Criminals”.

Boyne State Forest is part of the National Estate Register, contains records of nationally listed endangered species, as well as state-listed species, such as swift parrots, yellow-bellied gliders, masked and sooty owls.

South East Forest Rescue’s nocturnal fauna survey revealed greater gliders, feather-tailed gliders and sugar gliders as well as micro bats.

SEFR have demanded that the state-run logging agency Forests NSW guarantee there will be no impacts on the environment as a result of the logging and to guarantee any logging Forests NSW and their authorised contractors undertake will not impact on the health and wellbeing of the citizens of New South Wales, being both present and future unborn generations.

“These contractors are repeat offenders,” said Ms Stone, spokesperson for SEFR. “In Dampier State Forest and Bodalla State Forest in the foothills of Gulaga Mountain near Narooma, we uncovered breaches of the licence conditions committed by this contractor.”

“The Office of Environment and Heritage upheld these breaches,” Ms Stone said.

“Old-growth forest, ecologically mature forest, was logged.

Clear felled hillsides are not any form of environmental protection. There are now serious adverse impacts to the many threatened species of the area, and the water catchment

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Hey, the SEFR crew are at it again in Boyne State Forest today. Illegal logging stand-off, possum still in the tree