Blueberries on the agenda

Ready for a blueberry crop: Concerns are being raised about water resources, the use of chemicals and pesticides, town planning, the clearing of vegetation, the potential for pollution and the impact on threatened species.
Ready for a blueberry crop: Concerns are being raised about water resources, the use of chemicals and pesticides, town planning, the clearing of vegetation, the potential for pollution and the impact on threatened species.

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The Bellingen Environment Centre is presenting an information workshop at Bellingen Youth Hub on Wednesday, May 17 at 6pm.

The session features a film “Symphony of Soil” which will be presented by Marc Percival from Agrisense. 

This will be followed by a presentation from an organic blueberry farmer. 

Participants will learn about the laws that govern water licensing and how to put in an objection to a water license.  Hot soup and light refreshments will be served at the workshop on Wednesday evening.

“The EPA is not responding to residents’ complaints so we need to understand the laws and become more aware of our rights in order to the protect the land and water,” BEC’s Caroline Joseph said.

“Last week, Greens MLC Jeremy Buckingham commented that he thought it was time for the NSW Government to step in and take action about the Environmental pollution being caused by the proliferation of the blueberry industry across the State. 

“A best practice document promised by the industry is yet to appear and more and more residents across the region are asking questions about creeks being sucked dry, dams constructed at a greater size than approved and spray drift.” 

Rural Lands Policy

Councillors as part of processes to ease red tape are discussing a range of potential amendments to council’s existing planning policies governing rural land use. The potential amendments under consideration relate to changes in legislation that require Council to determine policy position on certain rural land uses in the Shire.

One area that Council is reviewing is the regulation of blueberry growing in Bellingen Shire.

To have your say go to council’s Create online portal