Forestry Corp removes logs at Whian Whian despite protests

THE Forestry Corporation removed eight truck loads of logs from private property at Whian Whian, the site of extensive protests recently.

Protestors collected a dossier of alleged breaches under the Private Native Forestry Code of Practice and presented it to Forestry Corporation representatives last Saturday.

The information has also been presented to the Environmental Defender's Office (EDO), which is believed to be working with the protestors to see what legal avenues are available to them.

It has also been alleged by a traditional owner, Cecil Roberts, that the logging operations are in breach of cultural heritage protocols.

Mr Roberts said three scar trees had been identified in the logging area, along with other ceremonial objects.

Activist Al Oshlack said they were trying to get an injunction to stop further logging at the site.

But a spokesperson for Forestry Corporation said a search was undertaken of the National Parks and Wildlife Services' Aboriginal Heritage Information Management System before commencing work, and found there were no items registered.

They have since reviewed the information provided about the scar trees, saying one was on an adjoining property and two were stumps from previously felled trees.

"One is known as a 'board tree', which indicates boards were inserted for axeman to stand on during previous harvesting operations. The third has not been found in the area Forestry Corporation is operating in," they said. "Forestry Corporation of NSW staff are all trained in Cultural Heritage sites identification. Any artefacts or scar trees found during operations are assessed and protected accordingly."

Sue James from the Crescent Moon Protection Group said all attempts at mediation with the landowners had been unsuccessful.



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