For the second time in the last months the Government has redefined the distance from bushland where the chainsaw-driven 10/50 entitlement clearing zone applies in.
Maps obtained by our office under the GIPA laws show that even the move from 350 metres to 100 metres sees large swathes of urban tree canopy covered by the laws, and prime for chopping by unscrupulous property owners for reasons that have nothing to do with bushfire protection.
Greens NSW MP and Spokesperson for Emergency Services David Shoebridge said:
“The Government is once more fiddling with the details of where the code applies, rather than addressing the fact that the code is an unmitigated disaster.
“Even if you reduce the area in which this unscientific entitlement to chop trees applies you have still not addressed the root cause of the problem which is that this code fails to effectively manage bushfire risk.
“Reducing the entitlement area to 100 metres will save some trees, but does nothing to stop property owners in the reduced zone from cutting down mature trees to enhance views and development potential.
“The maps show that even the 100 metre zone will cover large swathes of NSW, meaning cowboy tree lopper companies will continue to have free reign over much of the state.
“The Government continues its secretive review of the code, while across NSW precious urban trees continue to be lost at staggering rates.
“Even with these reductions the damaging code will continue to apply throughout metropolitan Sydney from Pittwater to Beecroft where there is no realistic bushfire risk.
“We need an urgent moratorium on 10/50 across this state to allow time for proper consideration of the structure and impact of the code, rather than just tweaking of the maps” Mr Shoebridge said.