Taskforce supports findings of Parliamentary enquiry

AFS, PEFC logo, 31 Jan, 2013.gifTaxpayers in NSW are achieving positive benefits in return for the costs associated with the sustainable harvesting of North Coast Forests, supporting the findings of a parliamentary committee calling for an increase in such activity.

As such the North Coast Forests Taskforce completely rejects the misleading and ill-informed claims made by Greens Party MP, David Shoebridge that an increase in logging would "cost taxpayers dearly" and 'doesn't make economic sense".

In fact the North Coast industry is managed in accordance with the highest environmental standards in the world as confirmed by a recent evaluation by a respected Finnish authority:


"The NSW forest industry has progressively reformed its practices over time yet the Green Party politicians and their trained activists still seem to thinks it operates the way it did in the 1930's. Back then, much less was known about the complex interactions in the biosphere between flora, fauna and indeed C02" said Acting Taskforce Chairperson Mr Trevor Sargeant.

The Taskforce's view is supported by recent comments made by Nick Roberts, the CEO of the NSW Forestry Corporation who has said the figures quoted by Mr Shoebridge are very much out of context. In a recent interview on ABC radio Mr Roberts highlighted that the Forestry Corporation manages 2 million hectares of native forest and that includes fire, weed and feral animal management as well as logging. Mr Roberts went on to say the NSW Forests Corporation invest a significant amount of money each year to deliver the forest protection the community rightly expects of State Forests and that represents good value for money.

In addition, the North Coast State forests are actively managed to complement the very extensive national park estate by investing in, and encouraging multiple community use, not just through its extensive road network but also by providing access to free recreation areas, activities such as horse riding, dog walking, mountain and trail bikes, four-wheel drive and many commercial and community recreation activities.

Trevor Sargeant said it will always cost money to manage public land and this is surely a responsibility of Government be it local sporting fields through to large National estates. For example it is understood that National Parks manage about 7million hectares at a cost of around $77m pa,