Balancing Conservation With Food Security

In the area surrounding Ben's farmland, native Coolabah trees - many of which are close to 200 years old - have long been a welcomed feature of the landscape, playing a pivotal role in sustaining the environment's rich biodiversity. Over the past 45 years, uncontrolled sucker regrowth has threatened the longevity of the Coolabah, drawing away the moisture in the soil that the trees need to survive.

Native vegetation legislation has prevented NSW farmers like Ben from removing the problematic sucker regrowth and re-establishing an ideal balance of native pastures.

"The control of regrowth like this should be a normal management tool for any farmer. Balancing productivity with maintaining the biodiversity of the natural environment is a goal for all NSW farmers, because it ensures our sustainability over the long-term."

What is needed now is legislation that is workable and enables NSW farmers to use practical management tools to control regrowth, return the environment to the productive capacity and levels of biodiversity it used to have and encourage the return of the species that lived and evolved in that habitat.