Labor sets priorities for the future of our state's environment

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Labor Leader Luke Foley has today outlined a detailed policy agenda for the future protection of our state’s environment – the most comprehensive environment plan ever presented to the people of NSW.

From our flora and fauna to coastal waters and estuaries and inland rivers and forests, Labor has outlined a broad-reaching environmental plan for the state.

Highlights include:

  • $150 million to create new national parks including the Great Koala National Park and a series of conservation reserves in Northern NSW to save the koala from extinction.
  • Creation of a Sydney Marine Park – the final piece in the jigsaw of the state’s marine protected areas running from Pittwater to Port Hacking and restoring sanctuary zones in existing marine parks
  • A statewide moratorium on coal seam gas activity, and a permanent ban in the Northern Rivers region and the core drinking water catchments. 2 km buffer zones will operate around National Parks and RAMSAR listed wetlands and a 2 km buffer zone, above and below ground around residential areas.
  • A Healthy Rivers Commission to improve the health of NSW’s rivers. NSW has the most degraded rivers in the country with only 3% considered healthy.
  • $4 million to support voluntary wildlife carers, the unsung heroes of wildlife protection. They care for injured wildlife in their homes and voluntary hospitals across the state.

Labor will also pursue World Heritage Listing for the Northern rainforests as well as direct the Office of Environment and Heritage to assess the proposal of a Eucalypt World Heritage listing.

The last Labor Government added over three million hectares to the reserve system. The Baird Government has created 84,000 of National Parks in the last four years. At this rate it would take the Liberals and Nationals 142 years to match Labor’s achievements when last in government.

In government, Labor will also review and replace the Liberals’ watered down biodiversity offsetting rules that allow unjustifiable loss of habitat and wildlife.

Quotes attributable to Labor Leader Luke Foley: 

“I am proud to present the most comprehensive environmental protection policy that has ever been presented to the people of NSW.

“There can be no new approach for New South Wales without a bold agenda for environmental protection and climate change.

“This is one of the passions of my public life.

“I want NSW to be the nation’s social conscience and not just its economic powerhouse.

“It is a great Labor tradition. Neville Wran protected the rainforests in the 1980s and Bob Carr married concern for economic growth and environmental protection to break all records as longest serving Premier in NSW.”

Read more about Labor's plan for our environment.