A mere month after the bushfires that devastated much of Australia have been contained, a logging company in the state of New South Wales (NSW) has continued to deforest
what was left unburnt. This is the same NSW that lost close to a third of its koala population to the blazes, while 24% of all koala habitat was turned to ash.
Because the assessment of the bushfires' environmental impact has not yet been completed, we have no idea just how bad it is. But one thing is sure: logging will only hurt more and should not be allowed to continue until we know the extent of the damage. We could lose entire species forever.
But the Environment Protection Authority (EPA) of NSW says that the logging company, called Forestry Corporation, is not in violation of the logging laws in the state. That's why we must demand that the government of NSW temporarily suspend the Coastal Integrated Forestry Operations Approval (IFOA), the state's logging laws, until the fires' impacts have been completely assessed. Sign the petition today!
The devastation that Australia's koala population suffered was broadcast around the world. It is hard to forget the videos of koalas running from fires, their fur often singed or filled with smoke,
as brave witnesses spring into action with blankets and water bottles. But they are not the only species in trouble.
In fact, the Department of Agriculture, Water, and the Environment released a list of 119 species that they considered in urgent need of aid post-fires.
One of the ways a species lands a spot on this list is if a large portion of its habitat was taken in the fires.
One such species is the Hastings River mouse, whose habitat burned down to just 18% of its original size. Yet some of the unburnt sites that Forestry Corporation has been logging serve as important remnant habitat for the displaced and devastated mouse population.
Forestry Corporation had been granted clearance to log in burnt areas of the state's forests, where animals cannot live but timber can still be salvaged. But instead they continued to log in patches of thriving forest, including areas within the proposed Great Koala national park.Australia must step up to protect its native animal populations.
244 species found on the continent do not appear anywhere else in the world, and therefore must be protected at all costs. If logging companies are allowed to conduct business as usual without a complete fire impact assessment informing operations, we risk losing these animals forever.But there is still time to save them! Add your name to the petition asking the state government of NSW to suspend the Coastal IFOA until all impact assessments of this season's bushfires are complete.