A new US style front group was launched on World Environment Day 2005 – calling itself the Australian Environment Foundation. Clever manipulation of the ACF’s name. This is the classic confusion tactic.
Remember the Forest Protection Society? It was forced to change its name to Timber Communities Australia after it was challenged as misleading.
This new group is the creation of the right-wing think-tank the Institute for Public Affairs. It was registered in February ’05 as a business and announced at the Timber Communities Australia conference in Launceston (when Howard saved the forests). Their website is www.aefweb.
The AEF claims it is a not-for-profit, membership-based environmental organization and has no political affiliation. They say “Many of the foundation members are practical environmentalists – people who actively use and care for the environment.”
The AEF spokesperson was Kersten Gentle – the Victorian State Manager for Timber Communities Australia back then and a spokesperson for the alps grazing lobby. The Director is a South Australian farmer who opposes land-clearing laws, and others who have similar credentials in environmental abuse.