Media Release: Death-to-the-environment Bill needs refusal by Australian Senate

"The government has rushed its death-to-the-environment bill through the lower house which will see a further decline of Australia’s natural environment and nationally significant species. This bill was rushed through despite the conclusion of the Graeme Samuel’s Independent Review and ignoring its initial findings. Debate was guillotined and proposed amendments from the opposition or cross benches were left on the cutting room floor. The Morrison government will continue to ignore Department of Environment assessors or environmental advocates", said BBF takayna / Tarkine Campaigner Scott Jordan.

"The EPBC Act was created because the legacy of state-based environment management was species extinction and decline of species across the nation. The EPBC Act put the protection of threatened species above the power of the states. The Morrison government's re-hash of Tony Abbott's failed attack on the integrity of the EPBC would put the foxes back in charge of the hen house".

"The Senate now remains the hope for species like the critically endangered Swift Parrot, Humpback Whales and Leadbeater's Possum. We call on all Senators to oppose this buck-passing bill, and for Australian to contact their Senate representatives to voice their disgust at this bill".

“Notorious, failing Regional Forest Agreements are a critical benchmark against which these changes to Australian environment laws can be measured. To see what ‘ecological sustainability’ looks like when the Commonwealth hands it to the states, witness the flattened and burnt native forests across Tasmania after logging. Identical evidence can be found in Victoria, New South Wales and Western Australia in the nation’s logged native forests. These vast native forests, once full of rare and endangered species of national significance have been left to the State governments to destroy,” Bob Brown Foundation Campaign Manager Jenny Weber said.

“This Morrison bill echoes Donald Trump‘s environmental intelligence. It would have left Tasmania’s Franklin River, described by then-Premier Robin Gray as a brown leech-ridden ditch, dammed and dead,” Bob Brown said.

The Federal Government’s changes to the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act is symbolic of its preferred approach to future environmental assessments. The EPBC Act controls threats and impacts to over 1800 Australian species of fauna and flora listed as either endangered, critically endangered or vulnerable, and our National and World Heritage sites. This amendment bill would transfer decision making and assessments to state governments.

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