STEP is a community-based environmental organisation with over 400 members from Ku-ring-gai, Hornsby and surrounding suburbs. Our primary aim is to work for the conservation of bushland in northern Sydney.

STEP questions the conventional wisdom. Urban environmentalism is much more than fighting against loss of natural areas. It is essential to look many decades ahead and to educate and inspire the community to appreciate what we have if the battle against the unthinking and destroyers is to be won. Natural areas may be maintained by regeneration and maintenance but they can only be saved if they are not lost, piece by piece, to our ever increasing need for housing, schools, roads, playing fields, hospitals and all the other developments our governments are imposing upon us.


Under the expert cartographic skills of John Martyn, STEP has published three full-colour, double-sided maps of Sydney's northern suburbs. The maps show bush tracks, cycleways and fire trails with connecting streets and access points.

Stringybark Ridge, once the site of a long abandoned pony club, is part of the Berowra Valley National Park (BVNP). The main parties involved seemed then to be in agreement that this is how it should remain. All NSW national parks are governed by a legally binding Plan of Management (PoM).

STEP is of the view that there are many positive aspects to a system of well-planned and well-maintained tracks and trails in urban bushland. When combined with good signage they open up the wonders of the bush and promote conservation education. Tracks and trails should be part of a system which protects the bushland, should be appropriately managed and should enhance the enjoyment of bushland by locals and visitors.

STEP is an active participant in the debate surrounding those proposals and planning issues which we believe may pose a direct or indirect threat to our local and national natural environment.

The Environmental Impact Statement on Hornsby Quarry was released in August with a closing date for submissions of 4 September 2015. STEP and the Geological Heritage Subcommittee of the NSW Division of the Geological Society of Australia have some concerns.

John Martyn has produced three books for STEP.

Many, perhaps most, media commentators and some environmentalists seem to believe that the population debate is all a dog-whistling exercise orchestrated by the bigoted and xenophobic. While there are of course some of those people around, that is far from STEP’s position.

We fund environmental education using donations made to our environmental protection fund and also through a bequest left to us by Pam Morse. Contact us at to discuss how we could help you.

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