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

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 …

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Snowy River sucked dry by logging

The long battle by locals to obtain a 28% release of water from the Jindabyne dam for the Snowy River could be partly or wholly negated by clearfelling its major sub-catchments, scientists have warned. Two reports from the early 90s indicated that logging would cause reduced water yields. They were dully ignored by government, but …

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Why value adding isn’t the answer

Would we approve of hunting Panda Bears or Siberian Tigers if their carcasses were used for high value products? No? So it seems strange that there is still a belief that if we could set up a value adding industry, all our problems with logging native forests and old growth would be over. There is …

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The end of the logging industry as we know it?

The Japanese economic downturn has seen orders for East Gippsland woodchips drop dramatically. The logging industry is now looking perilous. Strong rumours suggest this will be long term and serious. Coupled with this is the planned government cut-backs in log volumes due to past overcutting. Chip trucks lying idle in Orbost, a blockade of the …

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Sweet RFA for our environment

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 …

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Charcoal burner over the border

Eighteen months ago conservationists successfully fought off a proposal to log and burn the western NSW Pilliga and Goonoo forests to create charcoal for a silicone plant at Lithgow. It was another plan for a massive woodchip operation, only this time in the ironbark and box forests. The proponents have been quietly sniffing about for …

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Power and Morality

Like religion, power positions itself as the cure for the problem it has created. Power without ethics creates elites who determine “reality” and create structures such as governments, religion, science institutions etc. They rely on “experts” who deliberately make simple reason too complex for the “ordinary”. Leaders manipulate reality and reason to suit. It is …

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NRE Blunders Exposed

REAL LIVE LOONEY TUNES Years ago, a Warner Bros Loony Tune TV cartoon featured the Acme Toothpick Factory. Whole logs were shoved into the jaws of a huge machine that ground the log down to a tiny toothpick, leaving a huge pile of waste. Back then, this was pretty funny. Now that NRE has adopted …

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And they call this auditing?

After a long battle, NRE has finally coughed up their last detailed audit report on compliance with the Code of Forest Practice (CFP – an environmental code that’s a bit of a joke in itself). I can see why they were reluctant to release this report, even though they were obliged to release all the …

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Secret SFRI data

NRE is currently trying to produce estimates of how much forest and log volumes are available that don’t leave everybody rolling around the floor with fits of laughter. The Statewide Forest Resource Inventory (SFRI) aims to replace the old system of estimates on “log volumes” (read “forests”). NRE has produced quite a little PR campaign …

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