Media Release: Gutwein must open STT data: Brown.

The Bob Brown Foundation says it appears that at the heart of the dispute over whether logging in Tasmania makes bushfires worse is the unavailability of information by Sustainable Timbers Tasmania which should be free and on the public record.

“After-the-event fault has been alleged with the University of Tasmania study but it is coming from pro-logging researchers using data which was not there for the university researchers. The premier should require all STT data to be open to any inquirer: it is a public institution running public forests. None of its data should be kept behind closed doors,” Bob Brown said today.

“The Australian National University has found that logging of mainland forests like those in Tasmania makes bushfires worse, not better. That stands. It is logical that ongoing studies will confirm the same here. If the Tasmanian minister for flattening and incinerating native forests has more recent studies showing that logging is good for controlling bushfires, he should release it, along with a full list of the areas burnt by the loggers’ own out-of-control regeneration burns,” Bob Brown said.

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Media Release: Deer disaster unfolds as minister watches on.

Tasmania is in the midst of a deer disaster, with the destructive feral species rapidly spreading west and south through the Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Area (TWWHA) while minister Guy Barnett counts how many and puts the environment last on the list of concerns, Bob Brown Foundation said today.

“The incompetence is monumental. The long term cost to taxpayers will be astronomical. While Barnett is flying uselessly over what he quaintly calls this invasive animal’s ‘traditional area’, the deer population is expanding with unprecedented speed, out of control, elsewhere - in the island state’s most important asset, the TWWHA.

“If he turned the heat camera on his own action plan it would record a blank."

The fact that Barnett is only now making public his aerial surveys from nearly a year ago, says everything about the government’s failure to treat this damaging infestation seriously,” Bob Brown said.

“The deer are moving much faster than this minister is thinking.”

“As to the management plan which the Liberals have been hinting at for years, there is none, on or off the drawing board. Nothing.“

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Media Release: Adani writ ‘disgusting’- Brown

Serial coal miner Gautam Adani’s writ against peaceful campaigner Ben Pennings will send a shudder through every Australian who values democracy, free speech and the right to peaceful protest, Bob Brown said in Hobart today.

"Adani’s writ follows his use of the court to evict Wangan and Jagalingou people from their land in the Galilee Basin where he is proceeding with an obscene environmentally-disastrous and unnecessary coalmine.

Gautam Adani is echoing the American Wise Use Movements dictum that if you can’t win the environmental argument, take out the environmental advocates.  I am disgusted by this billionaire Goliaths effort to silence an Australian citizen from speaking up for his heritage."

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Media Release: Morrison’s ecocidal bill ‘will rile Australians’ - Bob Brown Foundation.

The Morrison government’s bill handing federal environmental powers to the states and territories is the biggest legislative sell-out of Australia’s environment since federation, Bob Brown Foundation said today.

“This is Scott Morrison handing Australia’s wildlife and wild country and seas to the wolves. The worst exploiters wanted it: Morrison is not just cutting green tape, he is handing them an elephant gun of ecological elimination,” Bob Brown said.

“Had this biocidal bill been in place in earlier years, the Franklin would be dammed, Fraser Island logged, whale flensing would be still ‘creating jobs’ in Western Australia and there would be oil rigs on the Great Barrier Reef. A feature is what is missing after repudiation of Graeme Samuel’s key recommendation for an environmental ‘cop’ or policing agency to enforce national standards. Instead we will get state oversight like that of the Tasmanian Forest Practices Authority which effectively logs and incinerates wildlife-filled old growth forests.”

“Sussan Ley is the minister for disempowering herself. If she and the prime minister really wanted a ‘one stop shop’ for environmental approvals they should have taken powers from the eight states and territories and vested them in Canberra. This scattering of environmental power leaves the corporate exploiters to more easily bulldoze weaker state governments.”

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Media Release: Citizen Science builds case for Tarkine National Park

In five years, Bob Brown Foundation has recorded over 1800 species of flora, fauna, fungi and more in the threatened takayna / Tarkine, as the conservation group has been calling for a World Heritage listed National Park and return to World Heritage listing of the north west Tasmanian region.

This evening, Bob Brown Foundation will host a virtual event this evening as part of National Science week, to celebrate five years of Tarkine BioBlitzes.

“Our BioBlitz is both the largest and the longest running citizen science event in Tasmania. It is hosted annually each November in the Tarkine region and to date, has helped record over 3200 observations of more than 1800 species of flora, fauna, fungi and more – and has brought over 500 scientists, citizens and into the Tarkine,” Bob Brown Foundation’s Campaign Manager Jenny Weber said.

“We started our Tarkine BioBlitz as citizen science can improve conservation efforts by building scientific knowledge, encouraging public action and raise the alarm that threatened nature is far more important left intact than destroyed.  In takayna / Tarkine we are losing ancient ecosystems, unique flora and wildlife to logging, mining and off-road vehicle recreation,” Jenny Weber said.

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Media Release: Native Forest Logging in Tasmania is illegal.

Federal Court challenge launched last evening.

Bob Brown Foundation is mounting a Federal Court challenge to logging of native forests in Tasmania because the Tasmanian Regional Forest Agreement between the state and commonwealth does not accord with the federal Regional Forest Agreements Act 2002.

“The RFA Act requires there to be enforceable environmental arrangements between Canberra and Hobart for forestry operations to ensure protection of endangered species. BBF’s case is that the RFA is not legally enforceable, especially for the system of reserves and the requirement for ecologically sustainable forest management (ESFM),” Bob Brown Foundation lawyer Roland Browne said today.

“Moreover, an RFA is meant to “provide for” ESFM, but here, the Tasmanian RFA allows the Tasmanian forest management system (of laws and procedures) to be amended by Tasmania when and how it pleases without reference to the Commonwealth,” he said. “BBF’s case is that this is not good enough.”

“Tasmania’s RFA is different to Victoria, where the Victorian system is required to be accredited by the Commonwealth.”

“Here in Tasmania, the state does what it likes under the protection of the RFA,” Roland Browne said.

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Media Release: Two Tarkine defenders arrested halting mine works

Brown calls for laws to protect Tarkine

Today, two brave Tarkine defenders were arrested at the proposed Riley Creek mine site in takayna / Tarkine in Tasmania's North West. Colette Harmsen and Joseph Roe were arrested after locking themselves onto the entrance gate and machinery at the site. They have now been removed.

"I agree with Guy Barnett but what is needed to end people campaigning to save the Tarkine are laws to protect and return it to the Aboriginal people of Tasmania. The current laws allowing the Tarkine, one of the world’s last unprotected wild and scenic areas, to be logged and mined for short term profits, should be banished to last century. This Riley Creek venture is a precursor for much worse – all for out-of-state profiteers and at the expense of long term jobs in the tourism and hospitality industries,” said Environmentalist Bob Brown today.

Brown’s comments are in response to Minister Barnett claiming today’s environmental protest means the draconian anti-protest laws should be passed by the Legislative Council.

"People are taking action across the globe for the sake of planet Earth. Today we stand for takayna / Tarkine where immense intrinsic values span vast swathes of this majestic landscape, unscarred for hundreds of generations. What is happening here is ecocide. It will not be tolerated," said Erik Hayward, Bob Brown Foundation Campaign Organiser.

"Today we have seen that in the face of Government action and intimidatory legislation, members of the public will continue to stand up for the heritage values of takayna / Tarkine and the species like the Tasmanian Devil and Spotted-tailed Quoll that rely on it.”

"People like Colette and Joseph who were arrested today in defence of takayna / Tarkine should receive awards, not infringements. We thank them for their passion, and are sure that many Tasmanians share our gratitude. Our campaign to defend and protect takayna / Tarkine will continue as there should be no new mines in the world heritage value Tarkine," said Scott Jordan, Bob Brown Foundation Tarkine Campaigner.

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Media Release: Defenders stop Tarkine destruction at new mine.

Conservationists have halted site works on the controversial Riley Creek mine site in takayna/Tarkine this morning. Activists have locked on to the gate of the mine site, and to machinery on the site to prevent further destruction.

Venture Minerals' proposed Riley Creek project iron ore strip mine is opposed by conservationists including the Bob Brown Foundation.

"Riley Creek is in an area of known Tasmanian Devil and Spotted tail Quoll habitat, in a region that has been independently verified as having both National Heritage and World Heritage Values", said Bob Brown Foundation’s takayna/Tarkine Campaigner Scott Jordan.

"With question marks over the validity of Venture's permits, the Federal and State Environment Ministers should be here to stop this mine and defend the heritage values of takayna. As they are not, we have gathered in a peaceful vigil with members of the public who will,” Scott Jordan said.

"This project has courted condemnation at every turn. Ventures' investors should understand that public opposition to their planned ecological vandalism will not go away".

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Media Release: Tasmanian logging damned by FSC audit; certification should be doomed to failure. Immediate cessation of native forest logging is urgent

A coalition of environment groups has welcomed Sustainable Timber Tasmania’s (STT) disastrous FSC (Forestry Stewardship Certification) audit result because of its ongoing destruction of critically endangered Swift Parrot habitat and old growth forests.  

Bob Brown Foundation, The Wilderness Society, Tasmanian Conservation Trust, BirdLife Tasmania, Forestry Watch, The Tree Projects and XR Tasmania have called the audit report damning for Tasmania’s Government as STT continues to destroy Tasmania’s climate and wildlife storehouses.

“STT fails on many accounts including its ongoing removal of the critically endangered Swift Parrot’s habitat, failing to update their old growth mapping after fire, and continuing to log old growth forests.  The audit shows major deficiencies and proves old growth forests and threatened species are not safe under STT,”  Bob Brown Foundation’s Jenny Weber said.

“The audit stated the STT has improperly logged old growth under FSC rules. The Gutwein government must recognise that logging of old growth forests has no place in the 21st century,” The Wilderness Society Tasmania’s Campaign Manager Tom Allen said.

“The vague agreement between DPIPWE and STT that the government claims will protect 10,000ha of forest for the Swift Parrot was heavily criticized by the auditors as being insufficient to protect Swift Parrot and satisfy FSC requirements. To meet the requirements of FSC, the Gutwein government must develop a plan to protect all Swift Parrot habitats across the state,” Tom Allen said. 

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Media Release: Pro-Adani protester fined one quarter anti-Adani fines.

A pro-Adani horse rider, who knocked down and injured an anti-Adani Convoy woman at the Wangan and Jagalingou Water Festival at Clermont in central Queensland last year, has pleaded guilty to “Negligent Acts Causing Harm, Obstruct Police Officer, Common Assault and Trespass”. In the Emerald Magistrates Court this morning he was fined $2000 with no conviction recorded.

According to an ABC story on 16 March this year, “Thirteen protesters from Frontline Action on Coal (FLAC) each received fines of up to $8,000 on Tuesday in the Bowen Magistrates Court, after they chained themselves to coal-loading equipment at the Abbot Point Port in January.”

The Stop Adani Convoy was organised by Bob Brown Foundation. “A difference here is that horse-rider McDonald may not have thought out the consequences of his actions. All of us involved in the ongoing campaign to stop the Adani coal mine are doing it thoughtfully, to turn around the destruction of the Great Barrier Reef and so much more of the natural planet which we feel duty-bound to hand on safely to coming generations,” Bob Brown said.

“The bigger crime here is the totally unnecessary opening up of the Galilee Basin coal lode by billionaire Gautam Adani in pursuit of more money, up to $3 billion of which will go to a family trust in the Cayman Islands, according to another ABC report.”

 

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