The decision by the Federal Minister for the Environment, Peter Garrett, is one that is necessary, said the State’s peak environment group today.
“The NSW Government has known this was coming for a long time,” Cate Faehrmann, executive director of the Nature Conservation Council of NSW said today.
“The State Government has known the logging there was completely unsustainable and that it had to stop.
“Last year the Victorian Premier John Brumby committed to protect 95,000ha of Murray River Red Gum forests.
“Protecting forests can also create jobs in local areas and can be a boon to regional communities, however governments need to plan for this and ease any transitions that needs to occur.
“The fact that we are seeing thousands of hectares destroyed for firewood and railway sleepers when there are alternatives available is mad.
“The environment around the Central Murray region is really suffering because of the long-standing drought exacerbated by climate change.
“We need to stop and think about the sense in destroying trees that have been there for hundreds of years to burn them for firewood overnight. What kind of a future does that leave children living in the area now?” said Ms Faehrmann.