Old Growth Forests

Last Chance For Victoria’s Fairy Possum

5 April 2013

The Leadbeater’s possum, the animal emblem of Victoria, is being pushed towards extinction by state-subsidised logging, write Lauren Caulfield and Amelia Young

In 2010, the Baillieu opposition went to the election without an environment policy. Two and a half years and a change of premier later, it’s still not a priority for Victoria’s Coalition government.

Sending Leadbeater’s Possum down the road to extinction

14 December 2012

We have studied the effects of current widespread clear-felling in Victoria’s Mountain ash forests for almost three decades. Clear-felling now loses large amounts of money for the state of Victoria, degrades the forest, erodes water catchment yields, increases fire risks, and is driving Leadbeater’s Possum – the state’s faunal emblem – to extinction.

An alternative pathway is to reform (and significantly reduce) the loss-making pulpwood and timber industries, capitalise on the massive financial carbon values of these forests, maintain and then improve the water catchment values for Melbourne, and, in doing so, protect the globally endangered Leadbeater’s Possum.

It’s our choice.

Just 1% of central highlands old growth survives

12 September 2011

BEFORE European settlement up to 80 per cent of the wet eucalyptus forest of Victoria's central highlands was old-growth mountain ash, with trees taller than 90 metres towering above the landscape.

According to research published in US journal the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, the old-growth is nearly gone and on the verge of being unrecoverable.

The paper says decades of logging and frequent bushfire have reduced the area of old-growth to about 2000 hectares - 1.2 per cent of the forest area north-east of Healesville.

VicForests operations condemned

23 February 2011

THE government-owned company that logs Victoria's native forests is running out of timber, has failed to keep track of how much forest is left to log and cannot manage its costs, a damning Treasury report has found.

VicForests has also twice breached Department of Sustainability and Environment rules by logging too much and its backlog of forest that needs replanting has nearly tripled, according to the report by forestry expert URS.

Chipping away

22 November 2010
Originally published at : 

The promise to end woodchipping native forests was made 15 years ago. Maybe, just maybe, the promise will be kept. Royce Millar and Adam Morton report.

BOB Brown could have scripted John Brumby's passionate address to an adoring anti-logging rally in Treasury Gardens in 1995. "An end to native forest woodchips, the protection of our high-conservation value forest areas and an industry which is based in the future on plantations. That's what we want."

Hello possum, you’re an emblem of extinction

2 October 2010

IT IS not every day you get a chance to make an animal extinct twice. According to scientists, Victoria is steadily working on it.

Leadbeater’s possum, a marsupial endemic to native forest on Melbourne’s fringe, was declared extinct in the 1950s, apparently wiped out by agricultural land-clearing around the Bass River in South Gippsland.

Vic court decision looms as chipmill threat

13 August 2010
Originally published at : 

Environmentalists say a woodchip processor in South East New South Wales will face the brunt of a Victorian Supreme Court decision to block logging in East Gippsland.

The court has banned timber harvesting on Brown Mountain, north of Orbost, until the protected long-footed potoroo and other endangered species are safeguarded.

Chipbusters spokesman, Noel Plumb, says the decision will lead to an interruption of supply of timber to South East Fibre Exports at Eden.

Mr Plumb says the decision has set a landmark precedent.

Conservationists welcome landmark logging decision

12 August 2010
Originally published at : 

Conservationists says the Victorian Supreme Court's decision to block logging in East Gippsland could change the way forests are logged in other areas.
Justice Robert Osborn yesterday ruled logging of old growth trees at Brown Mountain, north of Orbost, can not resume until endangered wildlife is protected.
The judge said State Government owned timber enterprise VicForests must take measures to protect the habitat of the long-footed potoroo and other vulnerable species.

Landmark injunction halts old-growth logging

11 August 2010

Logging in an environmentally significant old growth forest in Victoria will remain banned until the state government implements a host of measures to protect endangered species.

Victoria's Supreme Court has upheld the ban preventing logging at Brown Mountain in the state's far east under an injunction, while a number of surveys on endangered wildlife are carried out.