REPORT: Gibberagee State Forest logging – Update June 23

The Clarence Environment Centre has been lobbying State and Federal Governments to protect resident Koalas in the above forest from planned logging operations for over 5 months.

Our first approach, with a full report on the inadequate provisions for koala protection in the harvest plan, was sent to then NSW Minister for Forests, the Hon Dugald Saunders in January. The eventual response to that approach completely ignored the issues raised relating to koalas, and instead lectured’ us about the rules under which Forestry Corporation (FC) supposedly operates in state forests. In fact, FC had deliberately omitted to mention that their pre-harvest environmental assessment had found evidence of koalas living in that forest.

Subsequent correspondence was brushed aside under the “caretaker mode” excuse, and the newly elected ministers, apparently still grappling with a deluge of requests such as ours, have yet to even respond to our calls to have this part of Gibberagee State Forest protected from logging by adding it to the adjoining Kooyong State Conservation Area.

As a result, logging of primary koala habitat began in the last week of May, 2023.