Logging halt urged in NSW’s fire regions

by | Nov 25, 2021

Peripitus, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

A recent Natural Resources Commission report not yet released by the New South Wales state government has called for a timber harvesting halt in three ‘extreme risk’ zones, a recent report by The Guardian has revealed.

The document not only calls for a halt to native logging in regions hit hard by the black summer bushfires, but also recommends revising agreements to account for the increasing threat of global heating, according to the report.

A copy of the Natural Resources Commission report on the Coastal Integrated Forestry Operations Approval (IFOA) was obtained by Guardian Australia, and allegedly calls for the suspension of timber harvesting for a minimum of three years in three zones it deemed to be “extreme risk”, including Narooma and Nowra on the south coast and Taree on the mid-north coast.

These areas present as “a risk of serious and irreversible harm to environmental values from the cumulative impacts of fire and harvesting,” adding that a temporary suspension was needed “in line with the precautionary principle”, according to the report.

Six other zones were also identified that the commission categorised as “high risk” where logging would be restricted in 75 per cent of the area, according to the report with only seven of 27 native forest regions were “low risk”, where harvesting could continue under “standard” rules.

Those risks included threats to vulnerable and critically endangered fauna and flora, including koalas and the long-nosed potoroo, according to the report.