The NSW Government has agreed on the details of the koala protection policy, which strikes a balance between safeguarding the future of our national icon while ensuring certainty for farmers.
Amendments to the State Environmental Planning Policy (Koala Habitat Protection) 2019 (Koala SEPP) and the Local Land Service Act 2013 were agreed to by ministers last night.
Acting Deputy Premier Paul Toole said the agreement is a balanced outcome that will protect koalas, protect their habitat and protect farmers’ property rights.
“The new agreement will separate land management and private native forestry from the SEPP so farmers can continue their farming operations without getting weighed down in green tape,” Mr Toole said
“Farmers face enough uncertainty with seasonal conditions and volatile markets - it is critical they have certainty around rules that apply to their farming practices as they bounce back from bushfires and drought.”
Minister for Planning and Public Spaces Rob Stokes said that the NSW Government had been working over many months to strike a balance between protecting the koala and the rights of our farmers.
“I’m pleased to say we have hit the mark,” Mr Stokes said
“Last night’s resolution demonstrates that there are often important robust and passionate discussions as part of the decision-making process. The koala is an iconic Australian animal and saving it from extinction in the wild is the goal of this policy.”
The NSW Government has agreed the following in order to reverse the decline of the State’s koala population:
The final Koala SEPP will be taken to the Executive Council for approval by the Governor as soon as possible and Guidelines will be published on Friday, 16 October. The NSW Government will introduce amendments into the Parliament to the Local Land Services Act 2013 this year.