Regional landholders facing Armageddon of invasive weeds

Regional landholders facing Armageddon of invasive weeds

22 May 2024

North West Queensland private landholders are under siege from invasive weeds, abandoned by a neglectful Queensland government that has turned a blind eye to their struggles, Katter’s Australian Party (KAP) Leader and Member for Traeger, Robbie Katter said.

“After years of neglect and underfunding by the Queensland government, invasive weeds are running rampant on state-owned lands, and as a result have encroached onto private land,” Mr Katter said.

“Rail, road, and power corridors, national parks and defence field training areas are the greatest biosecurity threats.

“The Queensland government talks the talk about biosecurity, and land management – it’s time that they walk the walk.

“Government mismanagement causes millions of dollars damage and lost productivity to industry and landholders,” the member for Traeger said.

Mr. Katter said understaffing and insufficient funding is at the heart of Queensland’s noxious weed problem.

“Producers are left to foot the bill to combat the spread of these harmful plants with costs running into millions of dollars each year.

“A grazier reported to me that he lost a whole hay paddock to Siam weed, which he estimated to be a loss of up to $1 million,” Mr Katter said.

Local grazier, Kylie Stretton, says her family along with many other property owners feel like they are fighting a losing battle.

“Graziers and farmers are judged by society and government on our ability to care for the land, however, often there are no harsher critics than ourselves,” Ms Stretton said.

“We invest a significant amount of money, time, and effort on a yearly basis to try and keep noxious weeds at bay with no government assistance or even acknowledgement for the work we do,” she said.

KAP Leader Robbie Katter said “This is yet another prime example of Brisbane’s neglect of North Queensland. While the south of the state thrives, our farmers and graziers are fighting a battle that belongs to the Queensland Government.”

“If cost is supposedly a problem, then that’s an easy fix – just give us a fraction of the Olympic Games cost!

“I demand the government live up to the environmental standards they impose on everyone else, and properly fund an emergency response to fight this war on weeds,” Mr Katter said.

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