Protecting Wilderness and National Parks

Natural Resources Commission final report recommends commercial logging in reserves

Natural Resources Commission final report recommends commercial logging in state conservation reserves


MEDIA RELEASE                                       Monday 8th December 2014

“The Colong Foundation calls on the NSW Government to reject the Natural Resources Commission’s recommendations released today regarding commercial logging and grazing in the Brigalow and Nandewar State Conservation Areas north of Coonabarabran[1]


These Natural Resources Commission recommendations include:

•           Commercial logging of Cypress Pine trees in selected state conservation areas to recover costs of what the Commission alleges will be ‘ecological thinning’;

•           Cattle grazing in selected state conservation areas;

•           Changing key reserve management legislation to allow for commercial logging and grazing in state conservation areas;

•           Changing the Federal Renewable Energy Target regulation to allow for a tax-payer subsidy of burning wood from reserves to generate ‘green electricity’; and

•           Delegation to NPWS regional managers the approval of specific logging and grazing plans, forcing park managers exploit reserves for commercial gain.

“Adopting taxpayer-subsidised plans for commercial operations will damage the green credentials of the NSW Government”, said Keith Muir, director of the Colong Foundation for Wilderness.

“The proposed arrangements must cause environmental degradation in reserves.  Fencing for containment of stock and using of chainsaws and heavy logging machinery causes serious environmental disturbance. 

Certain native trees, like Cypress, naturally develop dense stands.  To claim this tendency is unnatural is like claiming that the large uniform stands of Coachwood rainforest in the Washpool Wilderness or Snow Gum woodlands in the Alps are unnatural.  The proposed logging of reserves will punch holes in natural woodlands.  The Natural Resources Commission describes these holes as patchiness that increases ecosystem heterogeneity, but this is just ‘PR spin’ to justify commercial logging of reserves,” Mr Muir said.

For more information contact: Keith Muir, (02) 9261 2400 (wk) or 0412 791 404 (mob)

[1] Natural Resources Commission, December 2014, Brigalow and Nandewar State Conservation Areas – actively managing for better ecological outcomes, NRC, Sydney