Southern Gazette (South Perth) - - OPINION -

LET’S not beat around the bush, a ma­jor en­vi­ron­men­tal abuse is be­ing planned in Lathlain and only now are the res­i­dents fully aware of its im­pact.

Al­most 100 ma­jes­tic trees, many of them na­tive eu­ca­lypti, that pro­vide home and shel­ter for what is left of the na­tive birdlife, are marked for de­struc­tion by chain­saw. One or two trees sac­ri­ficed to progress is a pity, but to de­stroy a mini eco sys­tem is thoughtless plun­der, bar­baric. It is ecological ter­ror­ism. I am ap­palled that coun­cil­lors have the power to give per­mis­sion for such de­struc­tion to oc­cur in a pub­lic space. Those trees that have graced the sky­line of Lathlain for longer than half a cen­tury are in ef­fect a pre­cious as­set.

Not only are they a spec­tac­u­lar visual icon that de­fines the sub­urb, more prac­ti­cally they pro­vide shade, bind the sub­soil and de­sali­nate the ground wa­ter.

And let us not for­get that trees de­liver much-needed oxy­gen to the near-city air that’s con­stantly un­der at­tack from thou­sands of cars and aero­plane gases.

I re­alise that the West Coast Ea­gles need new train­ing fa­cil­i­ties to be com­pet­i­tive, but why the need for two ovals?

Build­ing two ovals side by side seems ex­trav­a­gant and a waste of pub­lic space that could be bet­ter used for the ben­e­fit of the res­i­dents and the bird life.

I at­tended a Vic­to­ria Park coun­cil meet­ing and judg­ing by the num­ber who turned up and the tone of the speak­ers, there is a lot op­po­si­tion to the project as it stands.

It is not too late for con­cerned res­i­dents to de­mand that the project be scaled back, or at the very least to de­mand that the ecol­ogy of the area be bet­ter pre­served. AN­TO­NIO CASELLA, Lathlain.

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