Ballina koalas not out of the woods yet

A koala resting in a tree © IFAW/J. PetchLast Friday the 200 or so koalas that live along the proposed route of the upgraded Pacific Highway were probably doing whatever koalas do on a Friday. They couldn’t have known that a decision was being made that could send bulldozers in to tear down the trees they live in, trample their food leaves and separate them from family and friends.

Follow the events: Read earlier post about Stage 10 Highway decision.

As it turned out, the decision, made by Greg Hunt, our Federal Environment Minister and the man responsible for safeguarding the koalas and our other vulnerable wildlife, was to approve but not approve. ‘Yes’ to the whole NSW Government upgrade proposal covering the 155kms from Woolgoolga to Ballina but ‘Maybe not’ to the especially problematic section 10 from Wardell to Ballina where the vitally important and vulnerable population of koalas live.

So NSW Government has to do more to convince Greg Hunt that their plan won’t result in the extinction of the koalas in the area before the bulldozers can start work.

IFAW and our partners Friends of the Koala aren’t sure what to think – does this represent a real chance for a road route that’s koala-friendly or is it a delaying tactic, allowing NSW Government to do a better job of re-hashing their proposal for the route that clearly spells disaster for the Ballina koalas and their trees? What do you think?

For sure we’ll be keeping close watch on what happens next and keep you up to date. Heartfelt thanks to all the thousands who sent in emails and letters, I’m sure each one helped.

-- IMc

Learn more about IFAW efforts to rescue animals in crisis around the world.

Post a comment

Experts

Azzedine Downes,Executive Vice President for International Operations, VP of P
President and Chief Executive Officer
Cynthia Milburn, Director, Animal Welfare Outreach & Education
Director, Animal Welfare Outreach & Education
Dr. Maria (Masha) N. Vorontsova, Regional Director, Russia & CIS
Regional Director, Russia & CIS
Dr. Ralf (Perry) Sonntag, Country Director, Germany
Country Director, Germany
Erica Martin, Vice President of Communications
Vice President of Communications
Grace Ge Gabriel, Regional Director, Asia
Regional Director, Asia
Isabel McCrea, Regional Director, Oceania
Regional Director, Oceania
Jason Bell, Program Director, Elephants Regional Director, South Africa
Program Director, Elephants, Regional Director, South Africa
Jeffrey Flocken, Regional Director, North America
Regional Director, North America
Jordi Casamitjana, Campaigns and Enforcement Manager, IFAW UK
Campaigns and Enforcement Manager, IFAW UK
Patrick Ramage, Program Director, Whales
Program Director, Whales
Paul Todd, Director, International Policy & Program Planning
Director, International Policy & Program Planning
Peter Pueschel, Director, International Environmental Agreements
Director, International Environmental Agreements
Sonja Van Tichelen, Regional Director, European Union
Regional Director, European Union
Tania McCrea-Steele, Campaigns and Enforcement Manager, IFAW UK
Campaigns and Enforcement Manager, IFAW UK