Farmers support sensible native vegetation bill

NSW Farmers today welcomed the introduction of one of the most sensible bills on native vegetation to be introduced into NSW Parliament.

The Native Vegetation Amendment Bill, tabled by the NSW Shooters and Fishers Party, proposes a number of straightforward targeted amendments to the Act.
NSW Farmers president Fiona Simson said the Bill did not take away all farmers’ issues with native vegetation but could fix a number of issues with the Act.
“At the moment broadscale clearing under current legislation includes the removal of a single plant. This is wrong and it is my understanding the Bill will amend that,” she said. 
“It is unfortunate but the current Act is the product of an ideological debate about tree clearing and not about the active management of our natural resources.
“We as farmers take our role as custodians of the land very seriously and we take pride in producing our food and fibre. But unfortunately, the Act is one of the biggest impediments to sustainable food and fibre production in NSW.”

Ms Simson said NSW Farmers had been seeking legislative changes to the native vegetation framework for many years and that the Coalition Government had committed to reviewing it.

“We are less than 12 months out from the next state election and we still have not seen any meaningful change on this issue."

“This is why we are supporting the amendments tabled today – because they are a step closer for farmers in rectifying the perverse outcomes that the current Act has on farming practices in this State and they recognise that environmental outcomes and food production outcomes can in fact go hand in hand.
“While we congratulate the NSW Government for committing to delivering more balanced, practical, streamlined and effective native vegetation regulations, there is a long way to go before they can be successfully delivered.

“We are therefore urging the government to support the Shooters and Fishers Bill which will change the definition of broadscale clearing and provide balanced protection of the environment against the social and economic benefits of productive agriculture,” Ms Simson concluded.

29 May 2014 





Contact: Danica Leys

Phone: 1300 794 000

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