Forestry Tasmania's illegal roading in Tarkine

Save the Tarkine  
Bob Brown Foundation  
Media Release – 10 February, 2017


Conservationists have uncovered illegal roading by Forestry Tasmania in a Wedge Tailed Eagle breeding exclusion zone in the Tarkine. The two roads were constructed in the past month, including the felling of a large number of trees. They are in proposed logging coupe SR107E and within the 1km Wedge Tailed Eagle breeding exclusion zone mandated in the Forest Practices Authority’s approved Forest Practices Plan for the site. The nest was known and properly documented seven months ago.
 “SR107E is a Blackwood forest with documented protected burrowing crayfish, and endangered White Goshawks and Wedge Tailed Eagles. This area should not be logged at all, but it sure as hell shouldn’t be logged in complete disregard of endangered species prescriptions that are outlined in the Forest Practices Plan”, said Save the Tarkine Campaign Coordinator, Scott Jordan.
“The Wedge Tailed Eagle is known to be highly susceptible to disturbance in the breeding season. With around only 130 breeding pairs remaining, each pair raises only one chick in a season”.
The Tasmanian Threatened Eagles Recovery Plan, adopted in 2006 by then Federal Environment Minister Malcolm Turnbull, lists protection of nesting habitat as a critical factor in the preservation of the eagles.
“This callous disregard for the rules shows that Forestry Tasmania cannot be trusted with logging in the Tarkine. The Forest Practices Authority should immediately rescind the Forest Practices Plan approval for logging,” Scott Jordan said.
“Those that engage in unlawful activity should not be allowed to profit from it,” Scott Jordan said.
 Save the Tarkine and the Bob Brown Foundation are calling for protection of these Blackwood forests north of Trowutta reserve as part of a vast tract of Tarkine forests. The two environment organisations are advocating for protection inside a Tarkine National Park and World Heritage area.
“In contravention of the law that governs logging and forest practices, pushing roads into the Wedge-Tailed Eagle breeding season exclusion zone is illegal,” Bob Brown Foundation’s Jenny Weber said.
“The controversial Malaysian logging company, Ta Ann is scheduled to receive timber from this logging coupe. It should refuse,” Jenny Weber said.

“We are calling on Premier Hodgman as well as the Federal  Government to hold an independent inquiry into this outrageous breach of environmental laws,” Jenny Weber said.

The matter will be referred to the Forest Practices Authority.

Attached - Photographs of the road operations into the threatened forests.
For more information or comment:
Scott Jordan, Campaign Coordinator, Save the Tarkine 0428300324
Jenny Weber, Campaign Manager, Bob Brown Foundation 0427366929


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Scrap logging's exemption from environment laws - Brown

Media Release - Friday 3 February 2017


Environmentalist Bob Brown has called on the Turnbull government and the Shorten Labor Opposition to scrap the federal logging act which promotes the destruction of native forests and wildlife by making logging exempt from environmental laws.

Under the federal Regional Forest Agreement Act, 10 magnificent Australian forest regions, including Victoria's East Gippsland and all of Tasmania, were signed over for logging for 20 years at a time (1997) by John Howard and Liberal state Premiers.

East Gippsland's 20-year logging sentence is up today but federal and state governments look set to agree behind closed doors for it to be extended without public consultation or review.

"This process is a covert environmental outrage; owls, gliding possums, Tasmanian devils, giant crayfish and other threatened species are being condemned to head to extinction by the federal government. Industrial logging is also a major, unfactored cause of greenhouse gas emissions making climate change worse, and a very real threat to tourism industry.

"This is a growing issue for the next federal election and Labor has a real opportunity, starting with this East Gippsland logging agreement, to catch majority public opinion which is against broad-scale native forest destruction," Brown said.

Jenny Weber 0427 366 929

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Mayor Quilliam's comments uninformed

Media Release 20 January 2017


Comments by Mayor Quilliam in the Circular Head Chronicle this week misrepresented a meeting held in Melbourne last week by Melbourne-based supporters of a Tarkine National Park. The meeting was in fact organised by the Bob Brown Foundation's Melbourne office, in support of local campaigns to have the Tarkine declared a National Park and World Heritage Area. The Bob Brown Foundation has campaign offices in Burnie, Hobart and Melbourne.

"The Tarkine is an area of outstanding and well-recognised National and World Heritage values. It is a special place to all Australians and, in fact, to a great many people around the globe", said Bob Brown Foundation's Burnie-based Tarkine campaigner Scott Jordan.

"Many people have visited Mayor Quilliam's region as a result of our campaign, supporting jobs and businesses in Circular Head. Understandably, some of those people have joined our campaign as a result of witnessing the Tarkine first hand."

"I don't recall Mayor Quilliam having similar issues with interstate mining companies or their foreign investors."

"Mayor Quilliam's address doesn't give him a greater say on World or National Heritage listing for the Tarkine."

For more information or comment:
Scott Jordan, Campaigner 0428 300 324

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Left Renewal looks like hoax - Bob Brown

Media Release 23 Dec 2016


The Sydney-based 'Left Renewal' group said to have set up as a splinter group within the NSW Greens looks like a hoax, former Greens leader Bob Brown said in Hobart today.

“When no one will put their name to such a litany of anti-Greens policies, under the guise that it is a collective without individuals, you have to suspect the whole thing is a joke.”

“Left Renewal looks more like left out in the cold. The environment almost fell off its agenda. Its central tenet of rejecting the state and the police is also a rejection of the Greens Charter which upholds the right of citizens to law and order. No member of such a group could agree with the Charter or remain a member of the Greens. As such, MPs including Lee Rhiannon and David Shoebridge would repudiate the group should anyone put their head up and claim legitimacy for it.”

“It looks like a bit of pre-Christmas over-indulgence to me.”

Media contact
Steven Chaffer  0408 855 261

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Climate, Forests, Wildlife & Economy threatened by Tasmanian Government regressive agenda

Media Release 13 December 2016


Bob Brown Foundation is expecting a lively Public Meeting in Hobart Town Hall tomorrow calling for forest protection, as guest speakers highlight the threat by Tasmania’s government to trash the future of forests, wildlife habitat, the economy and climate.

Impacts will be felt from the local to international by the regressive Tasmanian government agenda to allow logging in 357,000 hectares of Tasmania’s forests that were independently verified as high conservation value and promised secure protection by the previous Tasmanian government.

“Premier Hodgman plans to turn forest beauty into a double eyesore: one being the piles of logs on the Hobart wharf, the other being the hillsides scarred form clearfell logging in Tasmania's scenic interior. This puts visitors off and costs tourism industry jobs,” Bob Brown said.

“With global warming accelerating and ice sheets melting at an alarming rate, we have an urgent and overwhelming responsibility to protect native forests as carbon stores and restore degraded forests to maximise carbon as fast as we can. We need more forests protected, not less. The climate depends on it,” Global Greens Ambassador Christine Milne said.

“It is reprehensible that the Hodgman Government is recklessly destroying biodiversity and pumping carbon dioxide into the atmosphere when all the modelling of how the world can constrain global warming to less than 2 degrees and pursue 1.5, are based on increasing terrestrial carbon stores not rushing to liquidate them through logging,” Christine Milne said.

“After 20 years of trying to protect habitat for the world’s largest freshwater invertebrate, enough is enough. No reserves have been put aside and we are running out of areas considered suitable habitat for protection of this globally unique species. It is time to make a stand,” Lobster man Todd Walsh said.

“Logging high conservation value forests is not only offensive to Tasmanians but the kiss of death in the market. These days, people want to be sure that they are not buying the products of forest destruction,” Peg Putt, CEO of Markets for Change, concluded.

Defend Forests Public Meeting at Hobart Town Hall

Time: 1:10pm – 2pm
When: Wednesday 14 December

Order of Speakers:

Peg Putt – CEO Markets for Change.

Todd Walsh – The Lobster man, expert on the giant freshwater lobsters, Astocopsis Gouldi.

Heather Sculthorpe – CEO Tasmanian Aboriginal Centre.

Christine Milne - Global Greens Ambassador.

Bob Brown - Environmentalist

For more information: Jenny Weber 0427 366 929


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Hobart Town Hall Meeting to Rally Community for Forest Protection

Media Alert 12 December 2016


Bob Brown Foundation is hosting a Public Meeting in Hobart Town Hall this Wednesday, 14th December, at 1.10pm to highlight Premier Hodgman's proposal to allow logging in 357,000 hectares of Tasmania’s forests that were independently verified as high conservation value and due for protection under the previous Tasmanian Government.

“We are calling on the Hodgman Government to reverse its plans to legislate to allow logging in these forests across Tasmania. This Tasmanian government could instead provide great climate, wildlife protection, economic and environmental benefits by securing conservation reserves in these vast tracts of forests. The forests include vital strongholds for many federally-listed species, including the critically endangered swift parrot, grey goshawk, wedge-tailed eagle, and Astocopsis Gouldi (giant freshwater lobster). Forests from the Tarkine in the north west, Blue Tier in the north east and Wielangta, Tasman Peninsula and Bruny Island in the south,” Jenny Weber, Bob Brown Foundation’s Campaign Manager said.

Heather Sculthorpe – CEO Tasmanian Aboriginal Centre.
Todd Walsh – The Lobster man, expert on the giant freshwater lobsters, Astocopsis Gouldi.
Peg Putt – CEO Markets for Change.
Christine Milne - Global Greens Ambassador.
Bob Brown - Environmentalist

Where: Hobart Town Hall
Time: 1:10pm – 2pm
When: Wednesday 14 December

For more information
Jenny Weber 0427 366 929


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Hodgman degrades Tasmania's wilderness brand

Media Release 11 December 2016


The plan for more huts along the South Coast and Overland Tracks will erode the Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Area's globally-renowned wilderness brand while locking out the wider public from the intrusive amenities, environmentalist Bob Brown said today.

"Hodgman's minister for wilderness degradation, Matthew Groom, while taking part in the announcement of MONA's Macquarie Point's National Truth and Reconciliation Art Park, is promoting loss of the historic wild landscape of the South Coast Track and further commercial buildings at Cradle Mountain, the Walls of Jerusalem, Mt Field and Frenchmans Cap. At the same time, the Hodgman government plans to gut rather than protect 357,000 hectares of Tasmania's high-conservation value forests and wildlife habitat.

"Meantime the same premier and minister is in the courts opposing Aboriginal efforts to protect their Tarkine heritage.

"There is no cohesion or integrity in whatever vision the Hodgman government has for Tasmania. It is a grab-bag of commercial ideas from outside filling a vacuum of ideas from inside the government. Tasmania deserves much better," Brown said.

There will be a public meeting in the Hobart Town Hall this Wednesday, 14th December, at 1.10pm to highlight Hodgman's plans to open the previously protected forests to logging.

Jenny Weber 0427 366 929


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Proud new initiative from the ‘Loo Crew’ at Falls Festival

Media Release 2 December 2016


This year, an exciting new initiative is taking place for The Bob Brown Foundation’s renowned ‘Loo Crew’ at The Falls Music & Arts Festival, a family friendly music festival held each year at the picturesque Marion Bay. The event runs from 29th December to the 1st January and last year attracted close to 14,000 patrons. The Bob Brown Foundation’s ‘Loo Crew’ is a volunteer task force set up to manage the 200 eco-composting toilets on the site.

‘Loo Crew’ Site Manager for the festival is Erik Hayward who has worked on the event for 8 years.  He says, “It's important to get the message across that we need to deal with our own waste. Flushing a toilet and turning our backs on the issue is only going to continue polluting our oceans and ever scarcer drinking water. Over 3 million litres of drinking water are saved over the 3 days. It’s not just about the staggering amount of water saved by using composting toilets, but it also recycles and composts the ‘humanure’ (compost from human waste).” 

Each year, approximately 8 tonnes of year-old decomposed ‘humanure’ from over 500 wheelie bins are stored on site to continue the composting process, eliminate nasty pathogens and promote good bacterial and fungal growth to break down the waste. This produces rich humus compost ready for growing plants. This year as a new initiative, the waste from previous festivals is being used to grow lavender in wicking beds made from 100% recycled materials from the Marion Bay site.  Although the growing lavender on the site is not yet ready for the 2016 Falls Festival, it will be harvested and dried for the following year, and added to the sawdust that each person puts in the toilet, setting off the sweet aroma scent of lavender oil. A natural eco-friendly chemical free, sustainable way to manage our human waste. The cycle continues. “This new initiative now sets an example of what we can create with such an abundant by-product. First lavender, then the world!" Hayward says.

The Loo Crew is run almost entirely by a team of volunteers. In the past they have come from all walks of life; students, backpackers, local residents and environmentalists. Many want to make new connections, have access to an amazing concert experience at no cost and to learn more about how to protect and treasure our Earth.

With International Volunteers Day on Monday 5th December it’s a timely reminder of the incredible value of volunteering to the community. Up to 100 volunteers are needed from 28 Dec – 1 Jan 2017 and they must commit to four 4-hour shifts. In return they will receive a free ticket to the festival, premium campsite, hot showers and cooked meals.

Register with Danielle at or at 0414 320 109.

For photo opportunities or further information please contact:
Danielle Ross Walls – Loo Crew Volunteer Coordinator
Mobile: 0417 015 040



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Most Tasmanians locked out of Regional Forest Agreement process

Media Release 26 November 2016


Two thirds of Tasmania is effectively locked out of direct involvement in the Tasmanian Forest Agreement's '20 year rolling extension' environmentalist Bob Brown said today.

"The Turnbull and Hodgman governments are so afraid of public opposition to industrial logging of Tasmania's ancient forests that Hobart, Launceston and Devonport have been lopped off the list of so-called 'drop-in centres' for information and public feedback on extending the Tasmanian Regional Forest Agreement. The centres are being set up in Huonville, Scottsdale and Burnie” (see today's advertisements.)

"It's pretty obvious. The Liberal governments are locating the centres in towns with a history linked to woodchipping but keeping the bulk of the interested public at bay. The idea that, after 20 years of the original Regional Forest Agreement, there would be a thorough-going root, trunk and branch review before any new agreement, is being dishonoured. Locking the public out like this will raise alarm that real environmental assessment of the impact of logging, and its damaging impact on tourism, is being strenuously avoided.”

Media contact:
Steven Chaffer  0408 855 261

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Media Release: Endangered Masked Owl recorded in Tarkine’s threatened forests at BioBlitz

Media Release 21 November 2016

A remarkably good image given it was taken at night, on a phone camera, through binoculars. Photo: Frank Bird

Citizens and scientists at the Tarkine BioBlitz have detected an endangered masked owl near logging coupes Forestry Tasmania wants to log in February 2017. The Bob Brown Foundation is calling for protection of the Frankland River forests where the masked owl was recorded.

‘Members of our BioBlitz were awestruck when seeing an endangered masked owl in the threatened forests while surveying at night,’ Biodiversity expert and survey leader, Frank Bird said.

‘Citizen scientists are in the forests doing the work Forestry Tasmania fails to do, and recording species dependent on intact forests. Planned destruction of this significant habitat shows disregard for threatened species,’ BioBlitz organiser Nick Fitzgerald said.

‘Protecting endangered species habitat in the Tarkine is urgent, there is an immediate threat to nesting habitat near where this owl was recorded. The survey site east of the Frankland River is some of the best masked owl habitat in the far north-west of Tasmania,’ BioBlitz organiser Nick Fitzgerald said.

‘The Tasmanian masked owl is listed as endangered due to habitat loss, it is the largest barn owl in Australia and only 500 breeding pairs remain. This majestic bird requires large hollow bearing trees, and its survival is dependent on preservation of mature forest habitat,’ Biodiversity expert and survey leader, Frank Bird said.

‘Recent road building for logging in these forests is encroaching on 6000 hectares of pristine forest in the headwaters of the Frankland River. The planned logging would be another ecological disaster for these vast tracts of forests,’ Bob Brown Foundation’s campaigner Jenny Weber said.

‘Presence of the Tasmanian masked owl, two wedge-tailed eagle nests and the giant freshwater crayfish (tayatea) in and around this proposed logging area is proof that Tasmania’s relentless logging regime pushing endangered and globally significant species to extinction needs to cease,’ Jenny Weber said.

Jenny Weber 0427 366 929

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