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Stop logging our already gutted forests

The Beagle Editor, This is part of an email I wrote to Andrew Constance and also will be sending to the NSW Premier. It is with great sadness and disappointment that I hear about logging being commenced in our bushfire affected areas - and other parts of the state containing critical habitat for endangered species. Our forest ecosystems has been crippled enough with the recent bushfires, with over 41% of national parks and 40% of state forest being damaged by bushfires (much more in our shire). With losses predicted in excess of a billion animals, what wildlife remains needs time and undisturbed forests/habitats to recover. Below I will outline the multitude of reasons to retain what native forests we have left in NSW. How many reasons are there to log it? These wilderness regions, with incredible biodiversity, are where we can find potential cures for infectious diseases or cancers. They provide billions of homes for wildlife, they help bring rain, increase water catchment and prevent erosion. They store carbon and give us the oxygen we breath. They should be treated with upmost respect, but yet, we tear them down for little gain.  I urge you to read this fact sheet produced by Doctors for the Environment providing information about how land clearing harms our health.  https://www.dea.org.au/wp-content/uploads/2019/01/Land-clearing-fact-sheet-Final-01-19.pdf   To summarise, land clearing:  - destabilises the climate (we cannot forget the basics of biology - trees absorb Co2 and give us life sustaining O2) - disrupts the water cycle affecting our water supply and quality (absolutely critical now we are in drought and are seeing average of 20% less rainfall in the southern half of Australia due to climate change) - increases risk of air pollution - leads to loss of biodiversity that supports health - leads to loss of opportunities to support wellbeing and mental health  - leads to loss of opportunities for nature based tourism, education, professional development and occupations  With there regards to the last two points, this area in Mogo is ear marked for ecotourism with the development of a world class mountain biking park - both opportunities for mental/physical health and recreation as well as boosting our tourism industry. These will provide benefits well into the long term, unlike logging.  To add to the insanity of this decision, regrowth actually increases the risk of bushfires. Scientist are calling for tougher land clearing laws for this reason.   (http://theconversation.com/to-reduce-fire-risk-and-meet-climate-targets-over-300-scientists-call-for-stronger-land-clearing-laws-113172)  Our government needs to act to protects us all from the increasing risks of bushfires - predicted to worsen by up to 8 times if we hit 2 degrees of global warming.  Our health is directly linked to the health of our environment. We need to seriously protect our environment if we want to have a prosperous and healthy future. Please everyone, get on your computers and join me in sending emails or ring their offices. We must let our local and state representatives know they have a duty to listen to the scientist and protect our health and environment .... Gladys Berejiklian:willoughby@parliament.nsw.gov.au or Ph: (02) 9439 4199   Andrew Constance: bega@parliament.nsw.gov.au or Ph: (02) 6492 2056 Michelle Hamrosi



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