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Skyline Tier Regeneration Project Report

This report from Bushways Environmental Services looks at the values for the community of restoring to native bush the Skyline Tier areas that were planted with pine plantations back in the 1970s . As well as the social, biodiversity and economic values, this report breaks new ground by including carbon values.

SKYLINE TIER

We have accessed $55,000 in funding in the past year for this project. There has been some large areas selectively harvested (pines removed, native trees retained) by a local logging contractor in the past few months which will regenerate back to native forest rapidly. Conservation Volunteers Australia (CVA) crews have been coming out for a week each month which has been very helpful but we need more local input.
The long-term goal is to secure enough funding to be able to pay for a locally based work team. The 2009 Report on Skyline Tier is now available.

PLANNING MATTERS

PLANNING DIRECTIVES/LAND USE PLAN/STRATEGIC PLAN
NEBN has attended two Planning Directives hearings (No. 1 and No. 4) to try and ensure that ecological protection, management and restoration underpin planning in Tasmania.
The recently completed Land Use Plan has been a useful document to submit at such hearings as it highlights the fact that ecological processes have not been identified, let alone protected in the planning system even though this is a legal requirement. The Land Use Plan has also been submitted to the Break O’Day Strategic Plan process as a means of promoting the need for the Council to develop a long-term ecologically based Land Use/Biodiversity strategy for our municipality.

CARBON REPORT

Bushways environmental consultants  are currently working on a report that will provide information on the potential carbon value of the restoration work at Skyline Tier to put an economic value on protection and biodiverse restoration works.

NEW HOLLAND MOUSE

Billie Lazenby has produced a report regarding NHM habitat in the St. Helens area. A copy has been sent to the Threatened Species Unit as well as Break O’Day Council. A recent hair tube survey near Swimcart Beach at the Bay of Fires produced one positive result. For the first time New Holland Mouse has been recorded in the area for 20 years. Surveying for NHM is ongoing.

MINING

We have attended a mediation meeting with MRT and Australia China Corporation about mining exploration on the Blue Tier and behind Scamander. There is also a proposal for gold exploration in the upper catchment of the Avenue River and many other parts of North East Tasmania. We will continue to object to mining operations which could have significant environmental impacts in high conservation value areas.

NEGOTIATIONS WITH GUNNS

The NEBN and other local community groups are in continuing negotiations with Gunns regarding the management of their Seaview Plantation in the head waters of the South George River. Bushways environmental consultants have thoroughly surveyed the area and are currently mapping areas for protection and restoration. The purpose of the report to be produced by Bushways will be to provide a management plan which demonstrates best practice plantation management as well as achieving protection and restoration of riparian and native vegetation areas.

CROWN LAND BINALONG BAY

NEBN has written to new State Minister for the Environment Mr Brian Wightman about the proposed sale of Crown Land at Binalong Bay adjoining the Humbug Point Nature Recreation Areas. After obtaining a FOI on this land which identified the proposed areas for sale a survey was carried out which revealed that nearly all of the land is either threatened forest communities Eucalyptus globulus (Blue Gum) or Eucalyptus ovata (Black Gum) forest, threatened species habitat (New Holland Mouse, Chaostola Skipper Butterfly) or wetland. We have requested that the Minister incorporate the entire area of Crown Land (39ha) into the Humbug Point Nature Recreation Area on environmental as well as planning grounds.

PRIVATE LAND

NEBN has written to the State and Federal Government about failure of the Policy and Conservation Assessment Branch’s (PCAB, of DPIPWE) failure to adequately protect threatened species. PCAB is a State Government Department which provides advice to Councils on threatened species issues. It also administers conservation covenants. In the case of a recent development on Binalong Bay Road PCAB recommended allowing a residence be built less than 250m metres from an active Sea-Eagles nest and also refused to place a conservation covenant on the land (instead recommending a Part V agreement which is a far weaker means of protection conservation values on private land). The land contains habitat for Swift Parrot, a threatened plant species and two threatened vegetation communities as well as being a potential buffer to limit disturbance of the Sea-Eagles nest. This is not the first time PCAB ahs failed to get the best outcome on private land with important natural values.

 

 

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copyright 2007 www.northeastbioregionalnetwork.org.au, Last update 31/7/09