Local, Science/Environment

Gladstone Forest Blockade enters fourth week

The blockade at Gladstone State Forest near Bellingen has now stopped logs from leaving the forest for over four weeks. Press Release from Bellingen Environment Centre.

To mark the milestone the blockaders have released more evidence of the environmental damage being caused to the forest caused by recent logging.

More footage of erosion occurring during a storm on Tuesday has also been released by the BEC.

Also released is a citizen audit of a logged area in Compartments 228 and 231 in Gladstone State Forest undertaken before last Tuesdays storm. The audit identified over forty  faulty or absent erosion control measures. The report concluded there is a systemic problem with the proper construction of road drainage structures (copy attached). The audit and has been forwarded to the Environment Protection Authority as the community cannot take legal action against the Forestry Corporation.

A follow up inspection of the audit following last Tuesdays storm has shown extensive erosion occurred directly related to the defective erosion control features and resulted in many cubic metres of soil erosion. Gladstone State Forests is located in the highly erosion prone Nambucca Soil Beds.

The section of Gladstone State Forest being logged was assessed by the Forest Corporation in its harvest planning as having dispersible soils with a high inherent hazard level and the presence of mass movement or evidence of soil instability.

The forest has multiple examples of landslips and mass movement from earlier logging approximately forty years ago. This has now been added to by extensive erosion following recent logging and last Tuesday’s storm.

“It is time the Forestry Corporation to finally recognise the multiple environmental damage being caused in Gladstone State Forest by its uneconomic logging operations and withdraws” said BEC spokesperson Ashley Love.   “They will be invited back  when they realise the forests need an extensive program of environmental repair including  stabilisation of erosion caused by two generations of logging, removal of extensive areas of lantana, small leaved privet and other weeds, treatment of dieback affected areas  and remediation of koala habitat”.

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  1. Editors Note: This blockade finished on Tuesday 13 March. You can read more about it here: https://www.bellingencourier.com.au/story/5282183/police-dismantle-sunny-corner-logging-blockade/?cs=486

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