The following comes from the Victorian National Parks Association.
In an exercise likely to cost the Victorian taxpayer more than half a million dollars, the Napthine Government is pushing to let cattle into the Alpine National Park’s beautiful Wonnangatta Valley next month.
They claim it is a trial to see how effective cattle grazing will be at reducing bushfires, but the so-called research trial is not actually part of the Victorian Government’s bushfire research program. It is in fact funded separately in an effort to honour a promise made by the Victorian Coalition to return cattle to the park.
What we need from you
The Federal Government has declared it will assess and approve or reject the proposed trial under national environmental laws.
The Wonnangatta Valley, part of the Alpine National Park, is protected under these laws as “national heritage” and is home to a number of nationally threatened species including rare orchids.
You have until 5pm next week (February 25) to say why the trial should not go ahead.
Please send a submission to the Victorian Government’s Department of Environment and Primary Industries, telling them why the trial will hurt the National Heritage listed Alpine National Park. Your comments will also be sent to the Australian Government.
- Cattle do not belong in the National Heritage listed Alpine National Park.
- The trial will allow cattle to graze half of the only population of the nationally threatened Pale Golden Moths orchid in a protected area, and a quarter of the entire known population.
- The trial design is careless, as they plan to bring cattle in as soon as March this year, even though there have been no fauna surveys done at the site, which is likely to contain populations of several threatened reptiles and frogs.
- The trial will contribute little, if anything, to our understanding of fire management in the high country. There are far better research programs to spend valuable research funds on.
- There has been no effort to find a suitable site for the trial outside the Alpine National Park, even though many suitable sites exist.
Please also add your own words about why you believe this trial should not go ahead.
Submissions MUST be sent by 5pm, Tuesday 25 February.
Wonnangatta Valley Research Trial
Department of Environment and Primary Industries
PO Box 500
East Melbourne VIC 3002
Please check the VNPA facebook page for further details on how to make a submission.