Government needs to explain chopping down Northbourne trees

Simon Corbell and his assistant Shane Rattenbury need to explain why the health of trees on Northbourne Avenue seems to have deteriorated so rapidly since a report in 2010 stated most were in good condition. The government has said they need to be chopped down because the trees are dying. Is that just a convenient excuse to further the light rail project? Shadow Minister for Transport Alistair Coe said today.

“The ‘Tree Inventory Report for ACT Government’ prepared by a consultant is dated in 2010 and was obtained under freedom of information last year. This report seems to show that the trees between the City and Dickson are performing well, contrary to what Mr Corbell and Mr Rattenbury now believe,” Mr Coe said.

Tree Inventory Report for ACT Government 2010

Eucalyptus elata (median strip between City and Dickson)
The trees are performing well in the landscape. Over 75% of trees assessed exhibit ‘Fair’ or ‘Good’ health and over 65% have a useful life expectancy of greater than 20 years. (page 16)

Crataegus smithiana (nature strips between City and Dickson)
The trees are performing well in the landscape. Over 85% of trees assessed exhibit ‘Fair’ or ‘Good’ health and 70% have a useful life expectancy of greater than 20 years. (page 22)

Eucalyptus mannifera (nature strips between City and Dickson)
The trees are performing very well in the landscape. Just under 90% of trees assessed exhibit fair or good health and over 75% have a useful life expectancy of greater than 20 years. (page 24)

“If a Liberal government proposed chopping down 484 trees, there would be an outcry from Labor and the Greens and they would be chaining themselves to those trees.

“However, because of their blind determination to proceed with light rail, Labor and the Greens have double standards. The government needs to offer an explanation,” Mr Coe concluded.