Green Building Council of Australia decision supports destruction of old-growth forests

The Green Building Council of Australia (GBCA) has caved into Australia’s forest practitioners by amending a Green Star Rating Scheme that will endorse timber from destructive clearfelling operations in old growth forests, said the Australian Conservation Foundation (ACF) today. “The GBCA has given in to extreme pressure from representatives of state government forestry agencies and …

Continue reading

Logging could boost fire risk: study

Large-scale logging could increase bushfire risk for Australia’s moist mountain ash forests, creating bigger fuel loads and drier, more combustible conditions, new research says. A world-first study led by Australian National University ecologist Professor David Lindenmayer has found gaps in the forest canopy allow the forest floor to dry out, increasing flammability by as much …

Continue reading

Firefighters demand climate change action

Firefighters have demanded federal politicians stop treating climate change like “a political football” and pass the emissions trading scheme. Members of the United Firefighters Union of Australia have travelled to Parliament House today to urge both sides of politics to take action as senators continue to debate the scheme. The union made a similar call …

Continue reading

Declared forests turn out to be paddocks

Nearly 40 per cent of old-growth forest earmarked for protection by the State Government since the 2006 election has been found instead to be young regrowth, poor quality vegetation and cleared paddocks.  A survey by green groups found that about 15,000 hectares of Gippsland forest that the Government planned to turn into national park and …

Continue reading

Logging strips water resource: ACF

Northern Victoria’s highest water-producing forests would produce 15 per cent more water by the end of the century if logging ceased immediately, a report will say today. The increased water flows would benefit the two rivers most important to agriculture and food production in Victoria: the Goulburn and the Murray. The report, commissioned by the …

Continue reading

Felled old-growth tree ‘500 years old’

A Victorian environment group has radiocarbon-tested a felled old-growth eucalypt and the result suggests the giant gum was at least 500 years old. The battle to save the old-growth forests of Brown Mountain in Victoria’s far east has been waged by environmentalists since 1989. When another coupe was cut down early this year, logging opponents …

Continue reading

Administration of the Flora and Fauna Guarantee Act 1988

The Flora and Fauna Guarantee Act 1988 (the Act) is the main Victorian legislation governing the conservation of threatened species and ecological communities and addresses the management of processes that threaten native flora and fauna. The Act applies to public and private land and establishes a listing process. Once an item is listed, there are …

Continue reading

Old forests are global carbon sinks

Old forests – those that are more than 200 years old – are not protected by international treaties because they were thought to be carbon neutral. But a team from Belgium says such forests actually continue to take up carbon dioxide and are therefore important carbon sinks. Sebastiaan Luyssaert and colleagues at Antwerp University reckon …

Continue reading

Retaining forests is cost-effective for reducing carbon emissions

Deforestation in the tropics causes about one quarter of anthropogenic carbon emissions globally. Now, an international team of economists has demonstrated that leaving the trees standing is a very cost-effective way to reduce global carbon emissions. While afforestation – planting trees – is allowed under the Kyoto Protocol as a way for developed nations to …

Continue reading

The climate Budget betrayal

Tuesday night’s Budget was a slap in the face for all those Australians who voted for the Labor Party at the last election in the belief that a new government would be willing and able to make Australia a true global climate leader. From the day he took leadership of the Labor Party, Kevin Rudd …

Continue reading