The New South Wales Government has rejected the recommendations of an Upper House enquiry that called for logging in National Parks. However, their response leaves the door open for ‘scientific’ trials that could still see commercial logging crews sent back into sensitive protected areas.
Friends of the Earth welcomes the Government’s response to rule out a moratorium on new National Parks and to open Parks for commercial logging. Politicians of all persuasions can’t ignore the fact that Australians don’t want to see our National Parks trashed. If National Parks aren’t safe from logging, where is? This response is a small win for the millions of Australians who care about our unique ecosystems and want to see them properly protected.
However, the response still provides support for a controversial ‘ecological thinning’ trial in the Barmah-Millewa National Park; Australia’s largest Red Gum forest and an internationally significant Ramsar wetland. This trial mimics a commercial forestry operation and will have significant impacts on this environment of national significance. If the O’Farrell Government is serious about protecting our natural heritage, they should rule out all logging in National Parks, whether commercial or ‘scientific.’ Friends of the Earth worked alongside Traditional Owners, scientists and local communities to ensure that precious remaining River Red Gum forests in Victoria and NSW were protected in National Parks.
We now need to mobilise to safeguard this legacy. Please check out and sign our petition to the federal Government calling for them to reject the proposed thinning trial.