Reddy: Poor logging practices, littering causes flooding

WATERWAYS Minister Dr Mahendra Reddy says indiscriminate logging, lack of good logging practices and poor handling of residual material when trees are felled could be major contributors to waterways being blocked.

He said this could also be a contributing factor to flooding events in the Western Division.

Dr Reddy added that another contributing factor could be the level and extent of littering across the division.

“There is no catchment management strategy and that is the reason logging is happening willy-nilly,” he said.

“In the past, the catchment was able to absorb the water run-off but as indiscriminate logging took over and unsustainable practices were used, water that used to be captured upstream is now flowing down and causing a lot of damage.

“The ultimate strategy is to ensure that the catchment holds water and that is something that we need to deal with once the weather clears.”

Dr Reddy said he would schedule meetings with the Forestry Ministry to discuss logging issues once the weather cleared and clean-up operations had been completed.

“When trees are felled and the usable part of the tree is identified and prepared, the residual material, treetops and branches, is trimmed and left near waterways or hilly terrain,” he said.

“This washes down during heavy rainfall and clogs waterways adding to the risk of creeks, streams and rivers overflowing.”