The Green Building Council of Australia (GBCA) has caved into Australia’s forest practitioners by amending a Green Star Rating Scheme that will endorse timber from destructive clearfelling operations in old growth forests, said the Australian Conservation Foundation (ACF) today.
“The GBCA has given in to extreme pressure from representatives of state government forestry agencies and elements of the forestry industry, and will now recognise unsustainably harvested timber under its new essential criteria for timber certification,” says Lindsay Hesketh, ACF Healthy Country Campaign Coordinator.
“The GBCA’s new criteria will also do nothing to help exclude illegal timber from being used to construct Australian buildings”.
“GBCA’s core business is to drive the adoption of green building practices through market-based solutions. How can we trust that GBCA will genuinely represent the sustainable property industry when they recognise and approve the use of timber from old growth forest areas in their certified buildings?”
“We are extremely disappointed with this outcome which comes after two years of consultation with progressive forest industries and environmental groups to develop criteria. This criteria was meant to help consumers choose sustainably harvested timber.”
“The GBCA must get back with the program and assert its independence from government and vested interests that have no interest in achieving an ecologically sustainable Australia,” said Mr Hesketh