(Addressed to Forests Minister Doug Donaldson, and copied to the Local)
We have lived in regional Area E on the Sunshine Coast for 36 years and despite its rural nature, Elphinstone Area E has little protected green space. The small remaining intact forest, known locally as Reed Road Forest, occupies a key location on the lower slopes of Mount Elphinstone next to residential areas. It is a beautiful mature, mixed forest that has grown up since the Conrad Road fire of 1906 and we strongly urge the government to preserve this block for present and future generations and remove it permanently from plans to be logged.
A trail winds through part of the forest, built with wildlife and low ecological impact in mind, and residents love walking there. On a walk last summer, we found lots of fungi, including Artist’s Conk (“Ganoderma applanatum”), and saw red-legged frogs.
With the recent logging of DL 1312 right up to the west bank of the Smales Creek Ravine, further degradation to the east of the ravine is sure to have a negative impact downstream. Crossed by numerous north-south running streams, this area provides important hydrological benefit to the Area E residents downstream who depend on well water.
The forest acts as a buffer from the recent clear-cut to the west and industrial activity to the east. In an age of increasing weather events related to global warming, this fabulous concentration of older trees providing a carbon sink becomes more important than ever. Logging this interface forest would further disrupt and displace wildlife in the area.
Reed Road forest is close to all in our community and important for its ecological, recreational, heritage and educational values and our family would like to see it maintained as much-needed green space in our community.
Gayle & Ron Neilson,