Federal Environment Minister, Tony Burke, fails to protect the environment!

Tony Burke has approved the Maules Creek Open Cut Coal mine, which will result in the loss of about 5000ha of Grassy Box Woodland in Leard State Forest, and the Koala habitat. THIS IS A NET LOSS of this community, DESPITE the required offsets! Just have a look at the description of this community included in the NSW listing of the community as critically endangered:

White Box Yellow Box Blakely’s Red Gum Woodland has been drastically reduced in area and highly fragmented because of clearance for cropping and pasture improvement. Austin et al. (2000) found the community had been reduced to less than 1% of its pre-European extent in the Central Lachlan region. Comparable degrees of reduction have been documented for NSW south western slopes and southern Tablelands (estimated <4% remaining, Thomas et. al. 2000), and for the Holbrook area (estimated <7% remaining, Gibbons and Boak (2000). Gibbons and Boak (2000) found remnants of woodlands dominated by Eucalyptus albens, E. melliodora and E. blakelyi were severely fragmented. Further remnants of the community are degraded as a consequence of their disturbance history. Some remnants of these communities survive with the trees partly or wholly removed by post European activities, and conversely, often remnants of these communities survive with these tree species largely intact but with the shrub or ground layers degraded to varying degrees through grazing or pasture modification. Remnants are subject to varying degrees of threat that jeopardise their viability. These threats include: further clearing (for cropping, pasture improvement or other development); deterioration of remnant condition (caused by firewood cutting, increased livestock grazing, weed invasion, inappropriate fire regimes, soil disturbance and increased nutrient loads); degradation of the landscape in which remnants occur (including soil acidification, salinity, and loss of connectivity between remnants).

 After having seen this, how the hell do you think 90% offshore owned Whitehaven Coal are going to FIND the offsets, let alone acquire them!!!

One thought on “Federal Environment Minister, Tony Burke, fails to protect the environment!

  1. Great to have you following this, Ian. There is now legal interest in the Maules Creek offset situation and financiers interested in the legal interest. Should be an interesting – and concerning – case.

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