Koalas in path of powerline

Kevin Thumpkin is campaigning to protect a koala habitat.
Kevin Thumpkin is campaigning to protect a koala habitat. Linden Morris

MEETINGS, walkouts, more meetings and drop-in sessions have been the sounding board for many issues surrounding the proposed Warwick to Stanthorpe powerline project.

One of the latest issues to surface is that of the safety of the fluffy grey Australian icons which live in trees on three of the four proposed routes.

Landholder along Washpool Rd and koala lover Kevin Thumpkin said he was worried for the future of the koalas should the new powerline run through their habitat.

"Anyone that regards koalas as an icon should be concerned at the thought of disturbing them," Mr Thumpkin said.

"They seem pretty happy where they are so we would like to see them stay there."

Powerlines project facilitator John Dengate said the koalas are just one of the environmental issues that have been raised.

"It is a situation that needs to be considered," Mr Dengate said.

"Stakeholders who will be affected, and that includes experts such as environmental groups, will be consulted on the issue.

"There are lots of important issues and after last week we now have a deeper and better understanding of the issues being raised."

Another concerned land holder Sharron Barker said the koalas were something many were worried about.

"We have koalas on our property too and they cross the road and end up near Glen and Dight Rd," she said.

"There is also a reserve that would be affected by the proposed routes as well.

"There are koalas all through here and because they are territorial animals they will be here for years to come."

Local Member for Southern Downs Lawrence Springborg said it was a matter of finding the best solution.

"Everything is about balance - balance between nature and people's health and wellbeing, and nature and people's right to have a good, reliable electricity supply," Mr Springborg said.

"If we work through these things we will be able to find a balance."

Topics:  koala habitat

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