EEG successfully takes legal action - #3

Thursday, October 31, 2013

EEG and the Department of Environment and Primary Industries (DEPI) have applied for our case to be discontinued in the Supreme Court after an out-of-court agreement was reached.

We took action to sue the government over its disregard for its own laws. We asked it to write protection plans for four out of 374 Victorian threatened species. Started in May, it was heard on 30th of October 2013.

The Flora and Fauna Guarantee Act states that as soon as a species is listed as threatened it must have a protection plan, called an Action Statement, drawn up ‘as soon as possible’. The four species chosen to test this law (the Glossy Black Cockatoo, the Long-nosed Potoroo, the Large Brown Tree Frog and the Eastern She-Oak skink) have been waiting for an Action Statement for between 10 and 18 years. We felt this can't be legally interpreted as ‘as soon as possible’!

The EDO represented us and our supporters funded this third successful legal case. :-)

Our rare wildlife is formally listed and acknowledged under law as being threatened, but over half receive no protection from logging, mining or development. Day by day, their survival becomes even more precarious as their habitat is destroyed by VicForests - with impunity!

DEPI has agreed to write a protection plan for each of these species within the next eight months. Minister Walsh’s department has also agreed to prepare a plan to deal with the massive backlog of threatened species still without protection plans (370). We don't know if this document will contain anything of substance or be made publicly available.

We will be watching to see if the Action Statements are strongly worded to ensure protection of wildlife, or designed to protect the ongoing destruction of their habitat, as has been the case for about 20 years.

Thanks again to the EDO and our generous supporters for helping ensure the government is held to account on the environment.

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