News

Border Ranges protection praised

Catherine Cusack
Catherine Cusack

THE North Coast Environment Council's efforts to save the Border Ranges World Heritage Area from dieback have been praised in Parliament by Lennox Head-based MLC Catherine Cusack.

The council's project focuses on managing lantana, which has led to an explosion in bell minor birds.

The birds are a native species, but the protection offered by lantana allows their populations to boom, changing the insect ecology and that in turn leads to dieback and a breakdown of the natural ecosystem.

Dieback in the Border Ranges is a case study in how a simple weed can rapidly destroy an entire forest, Ms Cusack said.
"Indeed our neighbors in the New England region have experienced devastating loss of native trees due to dieback and the damage is probably irreversible. The North Coast Bell minor program gives hope that our drier forests can be saved from a similar fate," she said.

"Weeds are the number one threat to our natural environment and we need to value and learn from local initiatives - they are the best hope we have of rescuing and maintaining our astonishing natural assets.

"I have called for governments, environmentalists and agricultural interests to work positively and draw inspiration from projects such as the Bell Minor Bird initiative. Weeds are choking our waterways, can rapidly destroy entire ecosystems and are the prime cause of habitat loss on public and private land. Groups used to fighting over environmental issues should work together to secure our biodiversity."

Ms Cusack said state and local road authorities had a key role in managing weeds through by mowing roadsides to control their spread.

A map showing the rapid transmission of weeds around the eastern states was identical to a map of major roads because weeds were spread by cars, trucks and heavy vehicles on long trips.

Ms Cusack also welcomed State Government initiatives to empower Councils to enforce weeds orders, and secure the state's borders by requiring heavy agricultural equipment be washed down before crossing into NSW.

NSW Primary Industries Minister Katrina Hodgkinson would have extra power to extend those controls to all state borders and other forms of machinery if deemed necessary.

"I am delighted the O'Farrell Government is acting to put in place a holistic framework and new measures to control weeds. It is the first step of what I believe will be a strong reform agenda to fight this number one threat to the viability of agriculture and integrity of our natural environment," Ms Cusack said.

Topics:  border ranges catherine cusack environment



Commercial fishers get extension, but it makes no difference

Ballina trawler harbour.

Deadline extended for NSW fishers buying back into the industry

Sex attacker slapped with strict supervision upon release

Violent sex offender's life after jail no walk in the park

Boogie woogie beauty took the world by storm

The grave of Winifred Atwell  at the Memorial gardens at South Gundurimba.

Photo Jacklyn Wagner / The Northern Star

International star who wanted to be buried on the Northern Rivers

Local Partners

David Attenborough on facing his mortality

Sir David Attenborough in a scene from the TV special The Death of the Oceans.

Life without Sir David Attenborough is hard to imagine

Goooodbye Hamish and Andy (from our radios)

Hamish and Andy

The pair have been on air since 2006

Saying "I do" changed Shia's outlook on marriage

Shia LaBeouf has a new outlook on marriage since he tied the knot.

Singer tunes in to first movie role

Tori Kelly voices the character Meena in the movie Sing.

Musician Tori Kelly voices Meena the teenage elephant in Sing

Cricketing greats bring Aussie mateship to commentary box

Cricket commentator Adam Gilchrist.

ADAM Gilchrist enjoys the fun of calling the Big Bash League.

The dead help solve the case

Debut novel delivers on wit, violence and shock

Chinese locked out of Australian property market

The rules are different if you're a foreigner

The buyer was from China - the trouble started right there

Morrison signs off on new affordable rental model

Australia's Treasurer Scott Morrison speaks during a press conference after a meeting of the Council of Federal Financial Relations at Parliament House in Canberra, Friday, Dec. 2, 2016.

Scott Morrison signed off on development of a new financing model

Coast high-flyer's fight back from bankruptcy, $72m debt

Scott Juniper went from millionaire developer to declaring bankruptcy in2012, now he is back on top of his game again with new developments including this one in Coolum.

'Apocalyptic lending storm' causes financial collapse.

How your home can earn you big $$$$ this Christmas

This luxury Twin Waters home rents out over Christmas for more than $6000 a week.

Home owners earning thousands renting out their homes this Christmas

2000 jobs at multi-million dollar Ipswich project

INSIDE: Artist's impressions of the interior of the new Eastern Heights aged care precinct.

Sub-contractors needed to build $15m aged care facility

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!