VicForests – major certification fail

VicForests has failed a forth time to gain the global forest environmental certification tick. We wonder what other motives they have to continue applying for acceptance when their practices don’t change.

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EEG submission to RFA renewal plan

The RFA was designed and executed to favour unbridled and unaccountable clearfelling and burning of publicly owned native forests. Now governments want to renew this crime for another 2 decades.

 EEG has once again told the government why the RFA is really Sweet FA. As we and many others have over the last 20 ...

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Leaving only the ASH

The Andrews Government is torn between helping a group of workers in a small country town fighting for their jobs and caving in to a group of Melbourne investors happy for taxpayers to relieve them of their responsibilities, writes Michael Spencer.

The problem for the Andrews Government is that if it caves in to pressure over the Heyfield sawmill, what is the precedent that will be set? Why shouldn’t it then help workers at milk factories in northern Victoria, or any ...

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Mirboo North community hopes to buy Victorian state forest to prevent VicForests logging

A South Gippsland landowner has offered to buy state forest to prevent the timber being harvested by Victorian Government-owned logging company VicForests.

Jon Wood runs beef cattle on the edge of the intended harvest area at Mirboo North in eastern Victoria, and said harvesting the logs would reduce land value.

VicForests has outlined plans to harvest up to 50 hectares of timber near the town.

“It’s a tiny little precinct of a biodiverse eucalypt forest, in a region totally devastated by farming ...

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Heyfield timber mill: Victorian Government completes purchase

UPDATE: THE Victorian Government will not say how much it has spent to buy the Heyfield timber mill.

A spokesman for the Government said the figure was confidential, but The Weekly Times understands the business was independently valued at close to $40 million.

Employment Minister Wade Noonan will be responsible for the timber mill, which will be run with a board of management and existing Australian Sustainable Hardwoods management. It is not clear yet who will be on the board, or ...

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Endangered animals threatened by logging, environment groups allege

Victoria’s state-owned logging company breached rules protecting native animals and rainforests almost 30 times over three years, environment groups allege in a new report.

The report comes after a dead koala was found in a logged section of forest in the Acheron Valley near Marysville that was home to the endangered Greater Glider.

As revealed by Fairfax Media earlier this year the ...

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Greater gliders: fears of ‘catastrophic’ consequences from logging in Victoria

Gliders listed as threatened by both state and federal governments, but they are not protected by legislation

Logging has begun in trees inhabited by the threatened greater gliders in a forest also inhabited by Victoria’s faunal emblem, the threatened Leadbeater’s possum.

Protections for the remaining Leadbeater’s possum population – believed to be fewer than 2,500 breeding individuals left in the wild – mean logging will be halted within 200m of known colonies. But no such protection exists for the greater gliders, which ...

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Malcolm Turnbull caves in to Tasmanian loggers

Last weekend, Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull flew to Launceston for the Tasmanian Liberals’ yearly conference.

Accompanied by Premier Will Hodgman, Turnbull’s first stop was the timber yard of logging company Neville-Smith Forest Products, once a part of the now-fallen Gunns logging empire. Twenty years after John Howard signed the first Regional Forest Agreement with Tasmania, Turnbull was in town to give Tasmania’s loggers all they wanted for the next 20 years and more. There was not a protester in sight.

What a ...

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Victorian government’s timber mill bailout has bad whiff of pork

The Victorian government’s decision to appropriate a large undisclosed sum of taxpayers’ money to buy a struggling timber mill nobody else wanted to acquire appears more driven by dubious politics than by rigorous public policy.

The government has not revealed how much it has agreed to pay Australian Sustainable Hardwood for the mill in Heyfield, Gippsland, but reports place the price as high as $50 million, 20 per more than an estimate earlier this year. With 250 staff, the mill is ...

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