Regional Forest Agreements

The Regional Forest Agreements were a multi-million dollar government set-up to pretend the forest battle had been solved by balancing all values. In effect it allowed unlimited woodchipping, paid lip-service to conservation, promised hundreds of jobs that never eventuated and made laws that took any responsibility away from the feds for looking after nationally threatened wildlife.

It effectively took the problematic forest debate away from the Commonwealth government and handed the controversial issue to the states.The RFA was an expensive sham designed to appear balanced and scientific. Nothing could be further from the truth.

In reality, it’s been an 18 year relentless rampage and the forest conflict has intensified. This is just another in a long line of processes the government keep placing before the public, and like all those before it has profited only one party – the profiteers.

These RFA’s have effectively facilitated the destruction of many valuable areas that were critical for the survival and ongoing evolution of species. Jobs have been lost due to the growing preference for pine timber and the unchecked dominance of the jobs-poor woodchipping industry. Environmental obligations have never been honoured. Yet in 2017, the Turnbull government is set  to roll them over unquestioningly for another 20 years.

What the new Federal RFA Bill means

Wednesday, August 14, 2002

Up until March 14th, the RFAs were merely an agreement, not legally binding documents. Labor and Liberals worked like best mates to railroad this legislation through in an early morning Canberra sitting. Its passage was met by a huge cheer from both parties. It successfully allows the Feds to wash their hands of any responsibility on forests. If they do step in to save an area for World Heritage or due to a new discovery, we, the public, will have to pay the logging industry truck loads for them not to log it - also called compensation.


Thursday, August 1, 2002

Will you still love me tomorrow? In the morning after the $300M Regional Forest Agreements party, Australia's woodchippers answer with a resounding "no".

Never a generous suitor, the woodchipping industry has now all but deserted Australia's political parties. The Forest Products Association (FPA) has even dumped Fred Nile!

With twenty years of woodchipping safely in the RFA bag, they are virtually invisible on the latest list of political donors. Invisible, that is, except for the loggers union, the CFMEU.

One CROEG clown destroys the RFAs credibility and Victoria's RFA reference groups

Monday, July 1, 2002

The Department of Natural Resources and Environment (NRE) set up a sham called the RFA Reference Groups. These groups were to help implement those bedraggled embarrassments concocted as Regional Forest Agreements. There were three groups set up; the Otways, East Gippsland and the Wombat group.

I nominated for and was accepted onto the group for East Gippsland. The group comprised of six logging industry representatives and six non-logging community members (farmer, tourism operator, a vet, a business person, a scientist and moi).

Polishing the turd - The 5 yearly review of the EG RFA

Thursday, January 10, 2002

he promised five yearly review of the East Gippsland RFA looks like being delayed another year. Its shaping up to be a rank job an attempt to sanitise whats totally on the nose. The States do their own assessment, pretend theyve honoured their environmental duty, have token public input, give themselves a tick, and dont dare invite any independent third party audits. Both Labor and the Coalition continue to pretend their RFAs are scientific, sweet and rosy, but theyre only fooling themselves.

The environment Sweet RFA

Monday, October 1, 2001

The Regional Forest Agreements (RFAs) sprang from the Earth Summit conference in Rio de Janiero in 1992 where Australia signed a ‘Global Statement of Principles on Forests’. The federal and State governments (excepting Tasmania) then signed onto the National Forest Policy Statement six months later. This policy stated that there would be a comprehensive, adequate and representative reserve system in place by 1995 to protect old growth and wilderness.