• North Coast Environment Council

    Formed in 1976, we are the peak umbrella environment group in northern NSW. We cover the area from the Hunter to the Tweed and west to the New England Highway. We also actively support other campaigns further afield. We receive no government funding and have no paid staff or central office. Our members and office-bearers work around the region, often travelling large distances to assist others as we organise in our defence of the environment and the communities it sustains. We rely on donations and the efforts of our members and volunteers, to remain effective. If you would like to make a tax deductible donation to assist us with our work, we guarantee plenty of bang for your buck. Post us a message to this site and we will get back to you.
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Koala conservation or catastrophe?

Media Release Monday May 12, 2008

New research announced last week, predicting devastating loss of nutritional habitat for the nation’s koalas demands comment on the failure of current koala management and conservation measures.

The North Coast Environment Council (NCEC) is calling to task the Federal and NSW Environment Ministers, Peter Garrett and Verity Firth over the poor performance of all levels of government to protect koala populations.

“Rhetoric, by way of national and state strategies and recovery plans, is impressive,” said NCEC President, Jim Morrison. “Implementation and information are something else – absolutely no leadership has been forthcoming.”

“Koalas are still widely distributed on the North Coast and many NCEC member organisations are working extremely hard to conserve local populations and their habitat. They are fed-up with the lack of resolve and transparency of government.”

“We hear about national initiatives such as the recently commenced review of the 1998 National Koala Conservation Strategy and the imminent Great Eastern Ranges Corridor. More than 25,000 koala deaths have been recorded over the life of the 1998 Strategy which clearly hasn’t worked. Now we are learning that with the rate that carbon dioxide concentrations are rising, the nutrient content of the koalas’ finely balanced diet is in jeopardy,Mr Morrison said.

“The roll-out of New South Wales’ so-called planning reforms is delivering more koala habitat into the hands of developers. We have a Draft Recovery Plan for the Koala which has been sitting around since 2003 and only two Comprehensive Koala Plans of Management, being those of Coffs Harbour and Port Stephens, in place under State Environment Planning Policy (SEPP 44): Koala Habitat Protection.”

“Urgent implementation of objective, science-based and well-co-ordinated policies will be essential for the koala to have any chance of survival. It’s high time that all levels of government demonstrate commitment and sustained leadership in koala conservation”, Mr Morrison said.

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