This blog looks past partisan politics to find solutions and provide insights into public policy. It is the companion blog to the author's on-line training course in democracy and civic action: www.3ptraining.com.au
It covers a wide spectrum of issues from local to international concerns.
It was previously the support blog for the author's biography "Finding Home, An Autobiographical Account of a Child Migrant Growing on the Edge of the Tasmanian Wilderness” available from Amazon.
Erik is a public policy professional and owner of the online training course in democracy and civic action: www.3ptraining.com.au
…explores ways to create a sustainable and just community. Explores how that community can be best protected at all levels including social policy/economics/ military.
Erik’s autobiography is a humorous read about serious things. It concerns living in the bush, wilderness, home education, spirituality, and activism. Finding Home is available from Amazon, Barnes&Noble and all good e-book sellers.
What your helicopter tour showed you was logging roads and
coups deep in world heritage value forests. This happens with dispersed logging
strategies and is standard forestry practice. It is the reason there has been a
rather bitter conflict in Tasmania for four decades. What you saw was world
heritage forests being whittled away. Including some logged areas in the new
boundaries will allow those areas to recover ecologically and preserve the
integrity of the reserves as a whole. Saying that the area is undeserving of
protection because of logging is akin to saying that the Egyptian sphinx is
unworthy or preservation because its nose is damaged.
Removing the logged areas from reserve areas is one option
but it does not require a wholesale roll back of the world heritage area which
is what your government is proposing (74,000 ha). Curiously this proposed role
back includes the glacial lakes of the Mt Field National Park. Obviously this
is simply cover for gifting old growth world heritage value forests to the
logging industry. It reduces your credibility to pretend otherwise.
I understand your concerns about special species timbers.
This issue was addressed comprehensively by Tasmania’s Legislative Council
whose select committee was chaired by, and largely made up of, conservative
members. It was widely expected that their changes to the ForestAgreement areas would spell the end of the
agreement. However the Environmental NGOs accepted the changes and allowed
further areas into production. This was a substantial compromise which deserves
acknowledgement. I encourage you to get across the detail and talk to the ENGOs
before passing judgement.
I was particularly surprised by your statement that this
process was political. In the four decade history of this conflict this was the
only time an agreement has been reached rather than imposed. It was industry
that approached the conservation movement seeking an outcome. The conservation
movement obliged despite there being no moratorium on logging during
negotiations. Political parties were kept at arms-length. The only political
interference was by the Legislative Council which watered down the conservation
outcomes in order to allow a greater supply of special species timbers.
Please talk to more than one interest group on this issue.
The Tasmanian Forest Agreement is a complex negotiated document representing
trade-offs between diverse groups. I am not an expert in the agreement but I
know that there is no such thing as a ‘forestry vs conservation’ position on
this. Different industry groups have different interests.Unsurprisingly some of them did not get
everything they wanted. Such is public life.
I will post this letter on my blogspot, and with your
permission, will post any reply.