Bush sell-off sparks ire of Landcare

BUNDABERG and District Urban Landcare Association say it is dismayed with the State Government's decision to sell off a 270ha piece of unallocated state bushland.

The bushland is located on South Bucca Rd, Meadowvale.

The Department of Natural Resources and Mines sought council's views, objections or requirements that may affect the future use of the land.

The proposed use of the land applied for is for sugar cane purposes.

The notice of intent to sell was passed with a unanimous vote by the Bundaberg regional councillors on Tuesday.

At the meeting, Meadowvale divisional representative Alan Bush asked that if it was true the land was being sold off as freehold, should the State Government have advertised the land publicly.

Council CEO Peter Byrne stood up and responded, saying he could not honestly answer that.

Then Cr Bush said, "If there are people out there who could purchase it and don't know anything about it, they'll ask council why."

The association's president Michael Johnson said the land should be kept in its natural state to maintain a crucial piece of the green network between the Meadowvale Nature Reserve, Splitters Creek corridors and the Kolan River.

"It's no use talking about corridors and sustainability of our environment and never acting," he said.

"This is wilful blindness to our children's future.

"With large-scale coal mining being anticipated to arrive in this town in the next few years, one would think the State Government would retain this land and other uncleared state lands as pre-requisite as an offset to what will be the loss of large tracts of natural vegetation."

A spokeswoman for the Minister for Natural Resources and Mines, Andrew Cripps, said that the department in November, 2013, received an application to purchase the unallocated state land but a decision on the matter was yet to be made.

"The department is processing that application in accordance with the Land Act 1994 and is consulting with stakeholders," she said.

"No decisions have been made whether or not to approve the application to purchase the land."

Topics:  bundaberg landcare

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