The same weeks as Kevin Rudd was returned as PM, Victoria’s Napthine government passed two anti-environment bills through parliament.
The amendment to the logging Act (SFTA) gives a free-for-all to the logging mafia; everything it wants for as long as it wants with bugger-all scrutiny. All underwritten by us taxpayers for hundreds of millions if they run out of forests (or another bushfire makes them unmerchantable).
BUT – VicForests first has to find someone who wants to buy native forest wood. It’s become as popular as whale meat!
VicForests has been unable to find a bidder for it’s assumed 800,000m3 of ‘waste’ wood it planned to create. This has been up for tender for almost 2 years. It appears that the ‘mixed forest’ (anything that’s not defined as ash forest)is harder to sell these days. Ash is of course the preferred tree of choice by woodchippers. Without the pulp and paper industry as the main buyer of our forests, the small ‘respectable’ front of sawmilling and sawlogs will mean VicForests makes an even greater loss than it already does.
The second piece of outrageous legislation will allow developers to bid for 99-year leases in our national parks. This effectively hands public land to privileged individuals for private profit.
Two thirds of Victoria’s national parks and other conservation reserves are up for grabs. These areas are to protect our already depleted natural areas, not provide more space for development and exploitation!
History shows that what starts as a small ‘eco-sized’ accommodation will morph into more beds, a café, bigger car parks, a shop or two, not to mention a sewerage plant and roads.
Have a look at VNPA’s webpage if you’re outraged. http://vnpa.org.au/page/nature-conservation/take-action/hands-off-our-pa…