The upcoming expiry of 20 year Regional Forest Agreements have seen alternative options to native forest management put to council this week.
Conservation organisation Great Southern Forest’s Dr Bronte Somerset said a more responsible long-term vision was needed.
“There is a moral and ethical imperative to act now, and the governments need to recognise it,” she said.
The agreements are made between state and federal governments, and allow for the logging of native forests on public land, while offering an exemption to Commonwealth environment laws.
Wednesday’s presentation saw Dr Somerset, along with social ecologist Dr Rosemary Beaumont and the organisation’s communications manager Paul Payten, present their case for a new approach to management.
"Dr Beaumont got across that there are sustainable jobs in forest restoration and untapped opportunities for commercially viable enterprises,” Dr Somerset said.
"If we don't make the move now, our children, and their children, will inherit the environmental destruction and financial loss, and it will be even more difficult for them to rectify.
“The 10 and 15 year reviews of the RFAs for NSW are way past their due dates, and only the five year review was published in 2009 - 5 years late.”
While council plays no role in the negotiations, Mayor Kristy McBain said she raised the issue with Nationals MP Paul Toole at a recent Canberra Region Joint Organisation meeting, requesting the government facilitate community consultation on future agreements.
“I appreciate the presentation, but council doesn’t have a seat at the table,” she said.