SERCA’s response to an invitation from the NSW Environment Protection Authority to attend an information session for environmental groups on the draft Coastal Integrated Forestry Operations Approvals (IFOAs) at Narooma on Thursday 7th June is detailed hereunder:
We are so disappointed with these changes to the IFOAs as well as the RFA changes recently proposed, especially the processes imposed on us with your sham consultations, that SERCA will not be attending your information sessions so that you can justify your so-called "consultations".
We find it completely incomprehensible that the EPA, which is established to protect our environment, clearly appears to be aligned with this Government in sacrificing our precious environmental values to fill the over-committed wood supply agreements negotiated by NSW Forestry Corporation, against the public good and the public interest. The report of the Natural Resources Commission clearly states that "it is not possible to meet the Government’s commitments around both environmental values and wood supply" yet you plough ahead to sacrifice those values you should be protecting on our behalf - shame on you. Yet again this is the fox in the henhouse.
We would like to invite your senior management to come down to the South Coast and see what the grey wording of the existing IFOAs have actually allowed to happen to our forests in the Southern and Eden Management Areas. This ‘new’ integrated proposal spreads the destructive and illogical practices from down here up to the north coast and makes them so much worse by taking out some of the already weak protections that existed previously.
The worst thing our government has done with both the RFA and IFOA proposals is to totally throw out any semblance of Ecologically Sustainable Forest Management. In our view, there should be a halt to logging and your department, the NSW Forestry Corporation, the loggers and our government properly brought to account for the destruction of our forests.
Hon. Secretary South East Region Conservation Alliance