Politics

Will forest shredders stop fires?

Thursday, May 4, 2017

Putting VicForests as the overseer of these trials has discredited the trial’s integrity right from the start.

Trials are currently underway to assess ‘mechanical fuel reduction’ in our public forests. The details are sketchy but seem to be based on a US practice of using heavy machinery with mulching/shredding capacity to run through native forests turning everything in the lower and mid story into mulch or shredded material. Trees are taken out and sold to mills. In the US this method of ‘fuel reduction’ is driven by the commercial need for bio-char, but is dressed up as ‘fire-safety’. In Australia, burning forests as a method of ‘fuel reduction’ remains an unproven science as a method of keeping communities safe, despite its wide spread use. However there is much research that shows it can be useless to counterproductive and extremely damaging for the natural ecology and wildlife of areas.

Greater Glider – recently listed as threatened

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Bad news: The Greater Glider, Australia’s largest (and fluffiest) gliding possum is under threat of extinction.

Good news: It has recently been added to the threatened list of Victoria’s Flora and Fauna Guarantee Act (FFGA)

After decades of decline and zero government interest or surveys, the clear evidence is that local extinctions of the Greater Glider are happening. It’s still in decline due to ongoing threats like clearfelling its habitat, planned burns and destruction of hollow-bearing trees that are essential for its survival. Like the Koala, the Greater Glider eats gum leaves and has a small home range. It won’t leave after its home area is cut down. The glider has an affinity for its known trees and hollows. It starves or is killed by predators once its forest or trees are destroyed.

Calls to end logging’s legal exemption from federal environment law

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

This week a coalition of 25 environment groups is urging Premier Daniel Andrews to abandon his plans to extend the legal exemption given to the native forest logging industry in East Gippsland.

The East Gippsland Regional Forest Agreement (RFA) is a 20-year arrangement between state and federal governments that gives special immunity to the logging industry from Federal environment laws - laws that should protect nationally listed threatened species. 

The plan to prepare plans – the end is nigh

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Having a list of rare and endangered species is not much good if there is no binding plan to protect them.

The Long nosed Potoroo (Potorous tridactylus tridactyl)

As a result of the legal proceedings initiated in the Supreme Court on 21 May 2013 by EDO on behalf of EEG, the then environment Department, DEPI, agreed to immediately prepare protection plans called Action Statements, for four of about 700 listed species (over half did not have Action Statements). DEPI is legally obliged under section 19 of the Flora and Fauna Guarantee Act to produce Action Statements as soon as possible after listing.

The species we chose to force the government to act were the Glossy Black-Cockatoo, the Long-Nosed Potoroo, the Large Brown Tree Frog and the Eastern She-Oak Skink. This was a start but we soon discovered that these plans can often be little more than motherhood statements.

Taskforce’s first industry/logger agreement

Friday, September 9, 2016

After much blood, sweat and tears, the Forest Taskforce finally gave birth to the long awaited agreed position called the Statement of Claim on Friday 9th September. The basic details are... there needs to be 2 VEAC enquiries - one on our forests and their natural values and one looking at what 'resource' is left for industry. There needs to be carbon accounting, law reform and a changed future plan for industry (based on plantations we hope).

Victoria’s own ‘Thylacine’ pushed into extinction pit

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Victoria’s version of the Tasmanian Tiger is heading down the same extinction path as its relative was 80 years ago when the last Tasmanian Tiger died in the Hobart Zoo.

“Eighty years ago we can accept that ignorance was the reason for the extinction of this amazing marsupial ‘dog’. In 2016 there is no excuse”, said Jill Redwood of Environment East Gippsland. “Are we set to farewell another fascinating marsupial carnivore from our ecosystem, without so much as a passing glance?”

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