VicForests pulls facts … out of a hat.

After a complaint was made about the content of VicForests’ “Flora, Fauna and Wood Production” factsheet, they have pulled it off their web site and replaced it with several new “fact” sheets that are just about as bad as the original.

VicForests has been running around media outlets trying to build “relationships” and in the latest Sustainability report they brag that they have:

increased our capacity to be a source of credible facts and figures about the timber industry.

However, the facts and figures they toss around these days jump around enough to make you giddy and show that VicForests is a pretty unreliable source of information.

VicForests can’t even be certain about the amount of forest we have in Victoria. In the old fact sheet, VicForests said Victoria had 7.1 million ha of forest – but in the new sheet we suddenly find an additional 700,000 ha added.

Nathan Trushell, VicForests’ Director of Strategy and Corporate Affairs sent us copies of the new sheets but factsheet “facts” were different from figures in his covering letter and different from what appeared in their Sustainability report!

One of the new sheets says in 2008/09, they handed back 5,400 ha of regenerated coupes to DSE. The Sustainability report says these were handed back in 2009/10 and less than 2,000 ha was handed back in 2008/09 but Trushell’s covering letter says they handed back 5,600 ha in 2009/2010! In their Annual Report, VicForests claims that they are “within 10-15% of their regeneration target” but in their Sustainability report they say they have “now come within 7.5% of the regeneration target”. Looks more like when VicForests goes to the media with “facts” they just put a whole bunch of numbers in a hat and say good luck.

The “fact” sheets repeat the lie that:
VicForests harvesting operations comply with the comprehensive legislations [sic] which govern sustainable harvesting in Victoria … careful prescriptions are also enforced in areas where harvesting operations occur.

Statements like this that ignore the findings of the Special EPA audit of illegal logging in National Parks and the Brown Mountain court case just make VicForests look ridiculous. Even their own Sustainability report last year showed that logging operations were still not fully compliant with logging regulations!

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