"Many people are unaware, but Bangalow has a precious koala population and the local community are working hard to protect local koala habitat and food trees, many of which are along the busy Bangalow Road or on private land.
"However, like most koala populations across NSW, Bangalow's koalas are under pressure from car strikes and urban development, including the mega Food Hub proposal at lot 201 Lismore Road, Bangalow that is currently before the Joint Regional Planning Panel.
"I share the concerns of Ballina MP, Tamara Smith, Mayor Simon Richardson and the community about the impacts of the proposed mega Food Hub at Bangalow, which will result in a significant loss of RU1 agricultural land, a large increase in local traffic and negative impacts on the local koala population; if it proceeds at the proposed scale.
"That's why I've called on JRPP to reject the Bangalow mega food-hub DA in its' current form in State Parliament.
"The Greens believe that food processing and manufacturing industries are vital for the Byron Shire economy, but they need to be at an appropriate scale and at an acceptable location, and not dwarf our small villages like Bangalow.
"Given koalas on the North Coast have almost halved over the last 20 years, it's vital that we started recognising and protecting each koala population from urban expansion, especially as they become more fragmented and have less opportunity to recover as their numbers decline.