Thank you for providing an opportunity to present a submission on the proposed biodiversity legislation and is likely impacts.
I live in the country, on a rural property, and have been increasingly concerned at the land clearing that I see in our state under the current legislative regime. The information that I have received from highly respected NGOs such as the NSW Nature Conservation Council and Birdlife Australia, as well as that provided at your website, is very disturbing.
I note that one organisation is pointed out that 'The NSW Government is proposing changes to its nature laws that will increase the extinction risk for our unique plant and animals, including Regent Honeyeaters, Swift Parrots and Powerful Owls!' Furthermore, 'The Wentworth Group of Concerned Scientist say the changes would result in 'more degraded land, more damage to river systems, increased carbon emissions, and the loss of habitat critical to the survival of threatened species.''
I fully support the position adopted by BirdLife Australia in opposing the proposed legislative changes and calling on the NSW government to:
1. Extend the public comment period by a period of no less than six months and undertake genuine engagement of the community in the design of new biodiversity legislation.
2. Ensure the Biodiversity Conservation Bill 2016 will:
prevent the extinction and promote the recovery of threatened species, populations and ecological communities;
protect critical habitat of threatened species, populations and ecological communities; and
avoid further species becoming threatened with extinction
3. Ensure that prior to clearing of vegetation in NSW, sites must be assessed by experienced, independent ecologists to ensure:
threatened fauna or flora species are not killed or destroyed
threatened species habitat is not removed or destroyed without direct offsets that meet strict criteria.
4. Commit to the necessary staff and funding resources for Local Land Services to certify and regulate vegetation management.
5. Establish an evidence-based approach for listing native species as 'exempt wildlife'.
This Is a Terrible Position to Be in and the government's current proposals are really scary and I urge the government to reconsider its policies in this area.
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