Forestry sector needs reform, not expansion
The Greens have called for an end to native forest logging in addition to plantation forestry reform following the Morrison Government’s announcement today about increasing its self-reliance on wood supply.
Quotes attributable to Greens Senator for lutruwita/Tasmania, Peter Whish-Wilson:
“It’s no surprise that the Liberal Party is announcing another taxpayer-subsidised lifeline to support the loss-making forestry industry in Tasmania prior to an election.
“Over recent decades the logging industry has received billions in taxpayer subsidies to keep it afloat; this is just another chapter in that sad saga.
“The Government refuses to rule out using unsustainable native forest products in its new ‘innovation hub’ – and on that basis alone the Greens are likely to use any future balance of power situation in parliament to block this funding package.
“With states across Australia ending native logging, it’s clear that the Tasmanian forestry industry won’t be able to continue in its current form forever. It’s destroying Australia’s incredible natural heritage, and consumers are waking up to the damage.
“The plantation forestry sector must not be recklessly expanded to create more job opportunities in research and manufacturing - the current system is broken, and we need to be smarter about what we’ve got.
“Many of Tasmania’s plantation forests are grown at the taxpayers’ expense, only to be shipped out for processing in Asia. Just holding back a handful of these shiploads would meet Australian building needs.”
Quotes attributable to Greens spokesperson for forests, Senator Janet Rice:
“Logging Australia’s native forests is environmental vandalism and economically unviable. The Greens will end the destructive native forest logging that is destroying wildlife habitation, water catchments, carbon stores.
“Ninety percent of the timber industry is already plantation based. We need to complete the shift to 100% plantation based industry and cease the devastating destruction done by logging our precious native forests.
“Only the Greens have a clear plan to end native forest logging through a $70m sustainable forestry package that will create genuinely new and sustainable jobs in ecotourism, farm forestry, plantation forestry and elsewhere.”
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