Environment East Gippsland Inc. is the longest running community forest group working for the protection of Victoria’s last and largest area of ancient forest and connected natural environments and wildlife.
EEG has been working to protect East Gippsland’s natural areas and wildlife for over 30 years. As a locally based group we play a vital role in information gathering on the local logging industry and other threats to the region.
EEG also works on broader issues such as climate warming and the role forests play in moderating climate and carbon capture and storage, as well as the need for genuine renewable energy. We use science wherever possible to provide informed public comment on issues ranging from planned burns to plastic waste.
We also network closely with both regional, state and national environment groups, sharing vital information as far and effectively as possible.
Below is a short video of Jill talking about the forests of East Gippsland.
History of EEG
Environment East Gippsland:
- began in 1982 in response to a proposal to build a large pulpmill in Orbost (it would have required over 1 million tonnes of wood a year)
- has a membership of over 350 and a supporters base of over 1000
- is a non-profit group which operates on donations and memberships only. It is run by volunteers (membership is $15 concession and $20 waged)
- has an annual operating budget of about $12,000.
Environment East Gippsland aims to:
- promote conservation values and environmental awareness about East Gippsland
- promote sustainability in environmental, economic and social terms
- make representation to Government re land use and management
- undertake research relevant to the above
- adhere to and promote principles of non-violence
- Cooperate with other groups having similar objectives.
What We Do
- We began by writing letters to government ministers, writing submissions and dealing with government departments and processes. We realised that many of these processes were set up to legitimise what the government intended to do anyway. Public opinion was often held in contempt but the government had to be seen to be ‘consulting’. There was a disproportionate amount of valuable time spent ‘playing nice’ in these processes compared to the often poor and predictable outcomes.
- We now focus more on exposing mismanagement, the economic loss of logging, the woodchip ‘mafia’, climate links, the political problems and so on.
- We liaises closely with larger state and national groups.
- We campaign to make the logging industry truly sustainable which involves a shift into existing plantations.
- We help in the wider campaigns of company boycotts.
- We pursue legal challenges in the courts.
- We expose government and logging/woodchip industry collusion.
- We hold an annual Easter Forests Forever Ecology camp which attracts over 100 people. Botanists, ecologists and conservationists lead walks and discussions about natural history and the threats to our forests.
- We maintain a highly regarded, website, Facebook page, Twitter account and produce e-bulletins for members and supporters regarding local and global forest and environment news.
- We provide comment to media on relevant news stories.
Environment East Gippsland is unique in that it does not rely on government funding to pay for staff, rent, phones etc. So we don’t have to worry about biting the hand that feeds us. We are regional but are big enough and well organised enough to have a significant influence on the forest debate. Our main office is solar powered and forest-friendly.