Last year’s audit report of VicForests’ operations (conducted by SCS) was finally released in early October 2018. Not surprisingly, and for the third time … VicForests failed. The Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) is the largest globally relevant timber certification body. VicForests has been unconvincingly trying to gain the easiest FSC tick for years.
Various Victorian groups provided very detailed evidence against VicForests and toured the audit team to devastated sites.
There are a number of areas of non-compliance but a major fail was their clearfelling to bare earth and burning of forests, especially the habitat of threatened wildlife and old growth. VicForests claims it will work to gain FSC in the next 2 years. We can’t see them improving much beyond their spin, but it seems it will buy them another 2 years. Meanwhile they will continue selling their blood-stained timber through Bunnings, threatened possum Reflex paper through Officeworks and to remain as a member of FSC Australia.
Environment East Gippsland has lodged a formal complaint against their membership but little is being done despite it being an apparent breach of membership guidelines.
Below is our detailed EEG submission.