Anger over tree felling at Woodhill

FED UP: Residents Hailey Mayes, Christine Johns, Jeremy Sheppard and Jocelynne Berry, pictured with their children and friends, are angered by the land clearing.
FED UP: Residents Hailey Mayes, Christine Johns, Jeremy Sheppard and Jocelynne Berry, pictured with their children and friends, are angered by the land clearing.

WOODHILL residents are outraged after vegetation clearing was conducted on a development site near Falconer Road without a permit.

A Logan City Council spokesperson confirmed a landholder was issued an enforcement notice to stop vegetation clearing on September 27.

Residents’ spokesperson Jocelynne Berry said her land backed onto the development.

“I originally thought they had been creating a fire break, which I knew they are allowed to do,” she said.

“But it soon became clear that this wasn’t what it was.”

Ms Berry said she was pleased with council’s quick action.

“The excavators and clearing were stopped within a few days,” she said.

“I just really hope retrospective approvals aren’t now enforced as I want the community to rally and have a large voice.”

Ms Berry posted on Facebook about getting people together to fight the clearing and she said her post had “gone viral”.

“I can’t believe how many people thought the same way about the clearing as me,” she said.

“We have a number of wildlife paths and locally significant plants through here. I don’t want to see it all ruined.”

Farming operations manager, of land owner Glenlogan Park, Rod Jenner said the works were undertaken by the company in what was considered normal agricultural management practices.

“As part of a process of ongoing improvement of our grazing properties we undertake weed clearing and as needed harvesting of trees to provide fencing material,” he said.

Mr Jenner said timber was needed to create fence posts and rails at the Innisplain Glenlogan Park property which was extensively damaged in this year’s floods.

“When we were notified by council that there was an issue, works were ceased and we have subsequently engaged with council to reach a resolution,” he said.

A Logan City Council spokesperson said it appeared there was no development application or approval for the vegetation clearing.

“Current indications are a development permit for operational work was required for this clearing,” the spokesperson said.

“Council is continuing its investigations into the clearing and will determine a course of action.”

The spokesperson said development applications for operational work in vegetation clearing did not carry a public notification period.

This incident comes as the state government announced that tree clearing has skyrocketed, reaching an alarming rate of 395,000 hectares in 2015-16, according to the annual deforestation report.

The report stated this was the highest woody vegetation clearing rate since 2003-04.