Kimberley pastoral company faces court over alleged illegal land clearing

Date: 
Tuesday, March 17, 2015

A pastoral company in Western Australia's Kimberley will face court next month for the alleged illegal clearing of 1,500 hectares.

The WA Department of Environment Regulation alleged the pastoral company SAWA cleared 784 hectares of native vegetation on Beefwood Park and on 821 hectares on Moola Bulla Station without approval.

The department commenced the action after it became aware of changes in the region via satellite imagery. It said it became aware of the changes in July 2012.

On the satellite it said it also noticed changes in the vegetation at Shamrock Station, Kilto Station, El Questro and Thangoo Station.

These were noticed in the years between 2011- 2014.

The department said these stations were not being prosecuted due to insufficient evidence.

The information came to light in February when Greens MLC Robin Chapple questioned Parliament about land clearing in the state.

Mr Chapple said the questions were sparked by community concern.

"We had heard that there was significant clearing going on on a number of stations without permits," he said.

"It was not just one it was several people over a period of time so then we decided to have a bit of a look at it.

Mr Chapple said he was happy to hear legal action was being taken.

"If action is being taken against SAWA or one of those stations for illegal clearing then I think us bringing it to the attention of the Minister has had the desired affect."

ABC Rural has sought a response from SAWA but is yet to hear back.

Original article: http://www.abc.net.au/news/2015-03-12/kimberley-pastoral-company-faces-c... 

 

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