Just two days after this season’s first protest in Ferntree Creek, EEG had to deal with hoax tree spiking claims again. It’s a predictable part of the forest campaign. The industry claims have a long history and rely on public and media gullibility. They are well timed but have never been substantiated. Every year we hear of accusations but never any evidence or prosecutions.
This time an ‘anonymous letter’ was written to the DSE stating trees had been spiked. This is enough for the industry and its political supporters to bang out headlines screaming ‘greenie sabotage’. It’s quite a cheap method of beating up a story – write an anonymous letter to the DSE then go point the finger.
Loggers have been found to damage their own or rival contractors’ machines. Such evidence was presented in a court battle to obtain police information under the Freedom of Information Act in the late 90s. It was revealed that of the six solved cases of machinery vandalism in the 1990s, every one was an industry related crime. But the National Party’s Peter Ryan and logging friends continue to hammer the lie that greens are the vandals.
If stopping logging was as easy as spiking trees. I’m sure conservationists wouldn’t be putting their lives at risk in blockade situations. These claims benefit only those who have lost the debate and public support.