Calls for Cumberland State Forest to become national park

Published on 02 September 2019

Minister Elliott pictured with Mayor of The Hills Shire, Dr Michelle Byrne at the Cumberland Forest.JPG

Mayor of The Hills Shire Council, Dr Michelle Byrne, and Baulkham Hills State Liberal MP David Elliott are calling for the Cumberland State Forest to become a National Park. 

Mayor Byrne said that transferring the Cumberland State Forest to the National Parks and Wildlife Service would result in greater protection of the much-loved local Forest.

“We believe that the best way to protect the Cumberland State Forest is for it to become a National Park, with the emphasis being on conservation, community access, well-being and enjoyment rather than remaining a State Forest where the focus is on a return on investment for the State Government," Mayor Byrne said.

“With a number of walking trails and educational activities, we know that the Cumberland State Forest is a well-loved space by residents from the Hills and from across the region. The importance of the Cumberland State Forest as a recreational and green lung increases as Sydney continues to grow and intensify.

“More than ever we need more green recreational space and we need to make sure that the Cumberland State Forest is given the highest level of protection so that it can remain intact for current and future generations,” Mayor Byrne added. 

Mr Elliott said that he has requested the NSW Minister for Industry and Trade, John Barilaro, to consider transferring the Cumberland State Forest to a National Park following the proposal of the NSW Environment Minister, Matt Kean, to increase the National Park creation rate tenfold.

“In light of the proposal by Minister Kean to increase the National Park creation rate tenfold, I have asked Minister Barilaro to consider transferring the Cumberland State Forest to the NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service,” Mr Elliott said.

“The conservation of biodiversity within the Cumberland State Forest will provide a range of environmental, social and economic benefits that is site specific and responds to local character and needs, and is a step towards ensuring green spaces remain a key hallmark of liveability in the Baulkham Hills electorate,” Mr Elliott said.

The Cumberland State Forest is the largest metropolitan Forest in the country and is home to five threatened fauna species, one threatened flora species, two threatened ecological communities and one protected migratory bird species.

PICTURE CREDIT: Hills Shire Mayor, Dr Michelle Byrne, and MP David Elliott at Cumberland State Forest 

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