Investigations into the unauthorised clearing of protected vegetation next to the Black Head Bowling Club are continuing, but volunteers from Hallidays Point Landcare are keen to ensure the issue is not forgotten.
Volunteer Alan Pursch has followed up the issue with MidCoast Council (MCC), the NSW Department of Planning, Industry and Environment, and NSW Minister for Water, Property and Housing, Melinda Pavey.
In each instance he received a reply stating the investigations were ongoing.
There was no threat to lives or property.Alan Pursch
"We fully support the investigations by council and Crown Lands because we understand the scientific and recreational importance of coastal rainforest and we think it's really important that people abide by the rules and follow the law that protects this vegetation," Mr Pursch said.
However, he is eager to see the investigation completed sooner rather than later - and for good reason.
"Our concern from a Landcare point of view is that there's a risk of erosion after a significant rain event, so it needs to be remediated by a professional bush regenerator registered with council," he said.
"I'd like to see the investigation done by the end of the month."
The investigation centres around the unauthorised clearing of an expanse of littoral rainforest approximately 40 metres long and 12 metres wide on the southern side of the Black Head Bowling Club.
The land was cleared by contractors engaged by Black Head Bowling Club on Wednesday, November 13, during NSW's first week-long state of emergency.
Despite repeatedly being knocked back by MCC when he had requested to have the land cleared in the past, Black Head Bowling Club sought permission from member for the Myall Lakes, Stephen Bromhead, on the grounds that the club could be threatened by fire.
Mr Bromhead granted the permission. "I said, 'It's a state of emergency, if people need to put in a firebreak or clear around a structure to protect it because they're in danger they're entitled to do it,'" Mr Bromhead.
But Mr Pursch said there was no danger in Black Head on November 13.
"There was no threat to lives or property," he said.
"I think the closest fire was three kilometres away."
One of approximately 30 volunteers at Hallidays Point Landcare - a group who has been working to preserve rainforest in the area for over 30 years - Mr Pursch said the damage to the already rare form of vegetation had been extensive.
"My guess is it would take a generation to regenerate," he said.
"My understanding is there's only about two per cent of littoral rainforest left of what there was 200 years ago.
"The volunteers are still absolutely horrified by what was done and we support the prompt remediation of the site at the cost of whoever organised the clearing."
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