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We’re taking Government to court!
On July 30 we lodged our case in the Federal Court against the Commonwealth and NSW Governments. For 30 years NEFA has been taking action for our forests. Thirty years ago, the combination of a successful legal challenge in the Land and Environment Court and a people-power defence in Chaelundi State Forest, set the groundwork for the more extensive forest reserve system that we have now. But even 20 years ago, the science was clear. The reserves weren’t connected, the oldgrowth forest was sparse, many species had insufficient habitat protected to maintain viable populations and despite us raising it, no-one in Government was taking climate change seriously. Nothing has really changed.
When we formed in 1989, our aims were the protection of rainforest, oldgrowth, wilderness and threatened species. NEFA has doggedly pursued these goals including through rallies, court cases, submissions, lobbying, and protracted negotiations. And now it’s back to the courts! 20+ years in the making. The NSW Regional Forest Agreements were signed over 20 years ago. Just before that the NSW Government legislated to stop community groups litigating forestry breaches. For 20 years we’ve watched as the forests have been logged, burnt and degraded as the regulator has been missing in action. Then in 2018 the NSW Regional Forest Agreements were extended more or less indefinitely- including the RFA for north-east NSW
That’s more and more destruction until the trees standing are like tooth picks and iconic species are pushed to the brink of extinction. Is that legal? We maintain that before the north-east RFA was extended there should have been a proper assessment done of threatened species. Important species in our region include the Koala, the Greater Glider, the Regent Honeyeater and Pugh’s Frog to name only a few.
We maintain that the impact of climate change should have been assessed! Duh!
The state of the oldgrowth forests should also have been assessed. We maintain that they weren’t, and that’s a breach of Federal Law. Please dig deep. Now, armed with legal advice, we are ready to do battle in defence of the forests and all the life they sustain. And that’s where you come in. Court action isn’t cheap. In order to pay for the case and keep you informed we need a few more dollars in the coffers. This is the best chance we’ve had in 20 years to keep the north-east forests standing to be allowed to grow old in peace and enjoyed by future generations in all their magnificence. NEFA needs your help to raise $50,000 to contribute resources to our case to make sure we can put the best case forward. A small community group like ours can only take action like this with your enerous support. (sourced from website 3/11/2021)