(not to be confused with the ‘whoops’ factor)
If only I had the negotiating skills of VicForests when I was growing up, I would never have had to eat my vegetables. I could have argued that Mum said, “You should eat your vegetables”, rather than “You must eat your vegetables”. This is the reasoning used by the DSE, after cutting a road through protected rainforest and Leadbeater’s possum habitat in the Royston Range of the Central Highlands. Apparently, because the loggers’ environmental Code states they ‘should’ try to avoid cutting roads through special areas, rather than ‘must’, then it’s OK really.
Unbelievable, but true!
After years of negotiations with DSE to prevent this precious area being logged, The Central Highlands Alliance (TCHA) were outraged when they discovered the bulldozers had started in there. Originally, the planned logging coupe included even larger chunks of rainforest, but only after TCHA pointed out that this would be illegal (!), did the DSE move the coupe boundaries. Thank goodness the coupes now include only some of the rainforest. That means it will take a few extra years for light to enter the remaining rainforest and for it to dry out and die, rather than be bulldozed away in one month. Just another feather in the cap of the cowboys at VicForests and their “Log-first-ask-questions-later-when-there-is-no-rainforest-left-to-pin-it-on-us” policy.