The Dignams realignment, when trees die – people die

Due to a malfunctioning road sign, that should have been advertising the end date for submissions on the cheaper Dignams Creek highway realignment concept design, Roads and Maritime Services generously extended the submission period for a week.

Having put in some brief comments, mostly on the potential for the development to help spread BMAD, a couple of things appeared in the following week that lead to some more.

One was a logging plan where Forests NSW has, for the first time, talked about the risk posed to forests through the spread of Myrtle rust. Since its initial discovery in 2010, the rust has spread to all coastal council areas in NSW. In 2012 Eurobodalla and Bega Shires were incorporated into the rust ‘red zone’.

The second was an American article reporting on studies finding a statistically significant increase in human mortality in Counties when forests declined due to the introduction of a new threat, in this case an introduced beetle.

As reported in the Narooma News, there isn’t much support in the local community for the RMS’s cheaper concept and while the $40 million saving must be a significant incentive, as alluded to in my additional comments, the RMS is in a unique position to actually work with the community although if they did, other agencies may not be impressed.

The RMS has indicated their their intention to release another issues paper detailing concerns raised in the public consultation.



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