The back down by the NSW Liberals on the new Koala SEPP Guidelines to demands by the National Party means the future of the Koala in NSW is looking even more bleak, says Cate Faehrmann Greens MP and Chair of the NSW Upper House Inquiry into Koalas.
“Koalas have suffered so much, with at least one third of them killed in the bushfires,” said Ms Faehrmann
“They are now seeking refuge and safety in the pockets of bushland and forests which remain. Any further loss could be devastating for local populations which are the key to the species ongoing survival.
“The protection of habitat necessary to stop koalas becoming extinct must be decided by the science, not by the National Party. For the Liberals to back down on the definition of core koala habitat after years of extensive research and mapping by experts is hugely disappointing,” says Ms Faehrmann.
“The changes to the definition of core koala habitat was the key change that was most supported by wildlife advocates, with many environment groups still concerned that protections for koalas in the new laws were too weak.
“This back down to the National Party’s demands doesn’t bode well for future reforms to protect koala habitat in the coming years.
“I fail to see how the Environment Minister is going to keep koala numbers stable let alone double their numbers by 2050 if he can’t get his government to stick to what the experts are telling them is needed to save koalas and their habitat,” says Ms Faehrmann.