The NSW Department of Planning and Environment is undertaking conservation planning across Western Sydney, including regions of the highly threatened Cumberland Plain woodland, as part of a development covering a sizeable area from Penrith, to ErskinePark, Luddenham, Macarthur (including the Mt Gilead development) and Wilton.
However, the Landcare and conservation community have serious concerns with the proposed terms. Specifically:
- Public reserves must not to be offsets for developers: The Terms of Reference (Section 3.1.5) do not include public bushland reserves in their definition of already-protected bushland. This will allow developers to use the public reserves we fought and paid for as their environmental offsets and deny local farmers vital conservation funding to protect bushland on farms. Tell the government that Section 3.1.5 must be amended to include ‘public bushland reserves’ in the definition of lands already protected; and
- Real public input is needed: The terms do not require the State Government to report on any public participation. The public must have the final say in planning our communities. Please ask for the Terms of Reference to require a summary of conservation priorities as stated by local communities from (at a minimum) local, face-to-face community workshops
You can read more about the terms here.
We need you – our Landcare, Bushcare and conservation community in Sydney and beyond to help. We have until 5pm Friday the 25 of January to make a submission to the Commonwealth Government, to guide federal assessment of these development plans.
What we need you to do:
- Read and note the above issues; it may help to read the terms too.
- In your own words (it can be as few as two sentences), raise the above points. More if you have more suggestions after reading through the terms above. Your submission must be in your own words for it to be counted. You can submit your thoughts to the Commonwealth Government here.
- Share this post, raise awareness and get in touch with media. The wider we spread this message (and we have just over a day to do it!) the more submissions and publicity we can achieve.
Help us protect the Cumberland Plain woodland. This is our chance to make a meaningful contribution and send a real message to the planning authorities that we value this precious landscape now, and for future generations.
The proposed development areas covering substation portions of the Cumberland Plain woodland. Indicative map produced by the NSW Department of Planning and Environment.