CHEMICAL spraying to kill weeds has been blamed for closing down a school and killing hundreds of trees and wildlife in a small town near Beaudesert. The story is reported in the Gold Coast Bulletin and is available here. Video footage is also available.In addition to this people, domestic and farm animals on other properties have also been sprayed and trees and grass are dying. Beaudesert Times has also published the horror story in the paper on Wednesday 23 April 2008. More information and photos will soon be published here.
Copy of the Beaudesrt Times cover story is reproduced on the forum pages of RAIDE's website with images of the vegetation damage. Readers can register to comment. See entry here.
Further coverage is given on the comprehensive local blogspot Cedar Grove View where you can also comment.
As well as wide spread death and destruction of vegetation both terrestial and aquatic wildlife have suffered. Nophascogales have been seen since the chemical spraying drifted over Spring Creek and many frogs have died.
A media release last week by Education Queensland confirmed that the Darlington State School students and staff were now temporarily relocated to Hillview until decontamination of the school had occurred. LACA understands that no less that six state agencies are now investigating the two incidents including Natural Resources and Water, Department of Primary Industry and Forestry, Environmental Protection Agency, Queensland Health, Education Queensland and Workplace Health and Safety.
The outdated farming practice of chemical spraying over large tracts of land to kill trees and therefore increase grass available is no longer tenable in this semi-rural area as the number of people being affected has increased. The cattle ingest the chemical from the grass and waterways and there have been documented stock losses due to chemical sprays.
The clearing of the riparian vegetation makes a mockery of the $8 million over the next four years that is being invested by the Queensland Government in the Logan, Bremer and Lockyer Valleys to work with land holders to restore riparian vegetation and other projects that will reduce the amount of fine sediment entering our waterways.
Unfortunately some people who were obviously not concerned removed the signs placed on property fencelines.
Any residents or individuals in the Kerry area who have concerns about chemical spray drift are encouraged to contact LACA by phoning 0411 361 044.
Links to free downloads of CSIRO publications about aerial spraying are here in the Books and Book review section. Grazon is a product mixed with 2/4D amine page 5 (of 10) to 'control' some weeds eg cockspur, crofton weed, lantana etc. The dilution and application rates for helicopter spraying is also given. Full details from the manufacturer's label. 2/4D is one of the chemicals used in Agent Orange. More information about Agent Orange is available here.
LACA will hold a community meeting at Kerry Memorial Hall. Details are posted on events page.