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Greens call for senate inquiry into logging and deforestation, as Turnbull government continues its support for last century’s destructive logging laws

Media Release
Janet Rice 29 Mar 2018

The Greens will call for a senate inquiry into destructive native forest logging and deforestation, the failed laws that allow it to happen in Australia, and how to ensure a sustainable future for our forests and the communities that rely on them.

“The Greens welcome federal Labor’s pledge to ensure independent and proper science is considered when it comes to the Regional Forest Agreements. In addition we need a thorough inquiry into the future of our forests, with the input of expert scientists, and the regional communities and workers affected, and call on the senate to support that.”

This move follows the rollover of the Tasmanian Regional Forest Agreement in late 2017 and the extension of three Victorian Regional Forest Agreements this week, signed off by Prime Minister Turnbull.

“The extension of three of the Victorian logging agreements has been followed by a state and federal stoush over how their long-term future is decided beyond the new 2020 expiry,” said Senator Janet Rice, Australian Greens spokesperson for forests.

“Meanwhile, destructive logging continues in high conservation value native forests, wrecking our water catchments, carbon stores, and wildlife habitat.”

“The wood products industry also recognises that the writing is on the wall, with sawmillers asking to open up national parks for logging as wood runs out. We need to look how Australia can ensure a sustainable wood products industry and a long-term future for regional communities, beyond destructive native forest logging.”

“Then we have landclearing which has resulted in Australia being  the only developed country listed as a global deforestation hotspot. The combination of native forest logging and landclearing is sending too much of our precious wildlife hurtling towards extinction.”

“We need a full and transparent inquiry into the future of our forests and woodlands in Australia, to examine what needs to be done to ensure the environmental, social and economic sustainability of our resources and communities.”

“With timber resources running out and species on the brink without robust national environmental laws in place, the Turnbull government’s policy of blindly rolling over the logging laws is short-sighted and untenable.”

The Greens have called for the Regional Forest Agreements to be scrapped, and for any continued logging to be subject to national environmental legal protections.

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