Tuesday, 10 May 2016
There are so many noxious weed-classified camphor laurel trees dotted over the Clarence Valley floodplain between Grafton and the sea that local government has studiously ignored the problem of their systematic removal for many decades.
Yet for some reason this particular set of councillors are fixated on four 100 year-old camphor laurels that provide the only real green shade for residents and tourists alike in the main street of the small town of Maclean.
The reason why the multitude of camphor trees in paddocks and along waterways are ignored has always been a puzzle, however these councillors see no inconsistency in their apparent indifference to one group of trees and their zealous dislike of another.
The Sydney Morning Herald, 6 May 2016, p. 17:
We, in our small town of Maclean, have been fighting for years to keep the four, century-old, iconic camphor laurels that line our main street, in our only riverside park, and are about to lose the battle. Yes, we know they are "weeds". The council has ignored all pleas, including a petition signed by 1500 people, and are using the weeds argument to implement its plans. If these were the last four in NSW and Queensland, I would, as an environmentalist, fell them myself. But these beautiful, huge, living things are much loved by our community and have been for decades. Maclean's soul is at risk too.