New tree rules threatenkoala habitatKoalaAction Group is concerned that Redland City Council is misleading the Redland community in regard to proposed new tree clearing laws in the draft City Plan.
In theRedland City Bulletinarticle, ‘City Plan to simplify tree clearing law’ (RCB, Dec. 9),a Council spokesman said “the City Plan would not make it easier to clear trees. Council’s intention was to regulate clearing to ensure the same or better environmental outcomes were achieved”.
The proposed new laws allow clearing up to 2500m sqof bush on rural private property for any reason at all, without Council approval, and there are approximately 1500 rural properties in Redland City. Council claims this is equivalent to or better than the current 3000m sqclearing allowance, but this presently only applies to new house approvals and there is onlya handful of properties currently without houses in the rural zone.
Many koala food trees inthe urban area currently have some form of protection under Council’s Local Law and Planning Scheme. The new City Plan proposes to have no tree protection at all on blocks less than 2000msq (half an acre). Varying rules are proposed for larger (half acre or greater) blocks in the urban footprint, but in most cases if they are mapped as environmentally significant then a 500m sqclearing limit is meant to provide protection. Many blocks of this size would not even have500msq of vegetation, so all of it could be cleared under the new rules.
These proposed new clearing laws are vastly different to Brisbane City Council laws, which have no blanket tree clearing allowances. They have a tight, prescriptive local law to protect all mapped native vegetation. This is a much more effective way to protect koala habitat.
Habitat loss is the greatest threat to our koalas, so allowing clearing of these areas just doesn’t make sense.It is clear that the Council spokesperson’s claims toRedland City Bulletin are inconsistent with what is proposed in the City Plan.
– D.Pointing, president, Koala Action Group
Toondah Harbour proposals present a riskThe Toondah Harbour proposals recently put forward by Walker Corporation do not appear to make sense from either an engineering or environmental perspective.
Additionally, I believe they pose a high risk from a financial standpoint.
Why then is our council actively supporting these proposals and potentially placing us, the ratepayers, also at risk?
Toondah Harbour, our gateway to North Stradbroke, certainly needs improving.
What is not warranted is the filling of the bay to produce what the proposals boil down to:a massive housing estate.
– C. Humphries, Cleveland
No surprise in mayor’sback-down on parksIt doesn’t surprise me the mayor has taken the parks issue off the re-zoning agenda. I suspect it was only put on so it could be taken off.
Give the residents of Redlands some proof the mayor and certain councillors are listening to community feedback before they forge ahead with their real agenda – namely, controversial re-zoning in other, more lucrative areas for developers.
With the elections only a few months away, there needed to be some evidence the council was listening to community feedback to ensure a favourable vote for sitting, ‘pro-development at any cost’councillors.
Redlandresidents need to ask their candidates some stiff questions regarding future developments, asthis area is fast becoming an outer suburb of Brisbane and is quickly losing its very special appeal to people wanting to live somewhere different.
As was saidin theeditorial (RCB, Dec. 16),the parks could end up back on the agenda very quickly.
– S. Barnes,Alexandra Hills
Litter clean-upappreciatedDriving to the station early in the mornings, I see a gentleman and his black lab walking Bloomfield Street, picking up the rubbish to keep the streets clean. I would like to say ‘thank you’for the effort he is putting into this public service of his own accord. I pick up any pieces that are seen, but I don’twalk thestreet. So thank you for looking after our streets.
Also, re Editorial Comment (RCB, Dec. 16),hear, hear to the power of the people. Keep fighting, Redlands, for 2016.
– P. Brookes,Thornlands
Christmas in the Redlands a pleasureDuring the past weeks, it has been a pleasure to hear and see in businesses, homes, streets and supermarkets throughout the Redlandsa focus on the true meaning of Christmas: nativity scenes, carols and hymns, messages of peace and goodwill. This message hasalso featuredin lovely displays at the Council librariesand a beautiful nativity scene at Redland Museum. All our local churcheshave displayed this message, too, but that goes without saying.I congratulate all those responsible for these lovely reminders.Frequently, in our modern world,this message is submerged underother Christmas activities.
National surveys have shown that the majority of Australians appreciate and want these reminders of the birth of Jesus in Bethlehem so many years ago. Not only do they celebrate thetruemeaning of Christmas, but they provide a feeling of continuity and security to those of us who have grown up with these reminders. They also offer an opportunity for our younger generation to experience the same feelings and message.
– S. Davis, Wellington Point
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