State politics

Dead koala found in logging coupe reignites push for new protected national park

24 June 2017

A dead koala has been found between fallen trees in a logged forest that the Andrews government could have protected – had it not ignored advice from its own scientific committee.

The Sunday Age has obtained graphic images of the lifeless animal slumped over branches in the Acheron Valley north of Warburton, in a confronting example of the potential impact of logging in Victoria.

VicForests fudges the numbers... again

25 May 2017
VicForests has been caught out using very dodgy arithmetic to blame the small endangered Leadbeaters possum for its predicament. These were presented to the VEAC investigation and the Parliamentary enquiry as kosher - and too complicated for the average Joe to understand. But their bamboozling tactics didn't fool Greens MP Samantha Dunn. VicForests is exposed as crooked managers yet again.
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The fiction of "it's the mill or the possum" stands on dodgy statistics such as those calculated by VicForests.

VicForests finally admits – the logs aren’t there

23 January 2017

Forests are not a Magic Pudding and this fact finally caught up with the government and VicForests in January 2017.  Knocking down forests faster than they can regrow has been the management standard for decades by every logging agency and overseen and excused by every government (Liberal and Labor). After such cut-throat management, the industry and workers are now screaming that their throats have been cut because the limit has been reached; forests can no longer provide the sawlogs demanded.

Logging plan puts squeeze on Victoria's high value native forests

26 November 2016

VicForests' timber release plan targets 12,000 hectares of East Gippsland forest. Photo: John Renowden

Victoria has taken the dubious title of being the largest logger of Australian native forest by volume, accounting for around a third of all native forest logged in the country over the past year.

The state government agency VicForests logged more than 1.3 million cubic metres of wood from Victoria's native forests, almost 100,000 cubic metres more than the year before.

Native Forest logging: we can do better than this

23 July 2016

Pretty much everyone is sick of the slogans used by the major parties in the election. But jobs, growth and fairness remain pertinent to the current situation in the native forests of Victoria's Central Highlands. There, the reality is that native forest logging provides few jobs; it is not a growth industry – its resource availability is shrinking. It is not fair that taxpayers have to subsidise an industry worth far less to the economy than alternative uses of the forest.

Is Victoria's native forestry industry worth it at $5 million a job?

27 June 2016

The viability of Victoria's government-owned native forestry business has been thrown into doubt by a high-level analysis concluding it takes more than $5 million of investment in roads, machinery and equipment to create a single timber job.

Victorian forests worth more as national park than timber

21 June 2016

This ANU report proves the logging industry is worth 1/70th what the forests produce in water value.

Professor David Lindenmayer said plainly "This is really dumb economics..." Logging in the central highlands generated a tiny $29 per hectare of additional net economic activity in 2013-14. That compares to a $2,023 per hectare contribution to the state's water supply, a $2,667 per hectare contribution to agriculture and $353 per hectare from tourism.

The analysis also found the value of carbon sequestration was potentially greater than the value of logging. Based on a carbon price of $12.25 - which was the average price paid by the Commonwealth in its second direct action emissions fund auction - it estimated carbon storage could generated about $38 per hectare per year.

Central Highlands carbon storage worth more than logging

20 June 2016

The Andrews government is considering creating a new national park in the central highlands. Photo: Justin McManus

Victoria's Central Highlands' forests would potentially generate more income for the state if they were permanently preserved to store carbon rather than logged, according to a major study.

Legal action forces VicForests to survey

4 February 2016

Action taken by Environment East Gippsland and their lawyers, Environmental Justice Australia, has resulted in VicForests today agreeing to halt logging and survey for rare wildlife and plants in a stand of East Gippsland’s forests rich in threatened species.

“Sadly, since mid-January and while negotiations have been going on, VicForests continued to clearfell this amazingly valuable forest where four rare and threatened wildlife and two plant species were discovered by volunteer surveyors” said Jill Redwood from EEG. “It’s a shame that so much has been destroyed in this time, in an area that clearly should have been surveyed by trained biologists before the chainsaws moved in”.

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