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Colbeck: Lock up of forest resources cannot proceed

The position of the Federal Coalition on further lock up of Tasmania’s forest resources has been vindicated by the Independent Verification Group report, according to Coalition Forestry Spokesman Richard Colbeck.

“The position of the Federal Coalition has been vindicated by this report and I repeat again that the Federal Coalition will not recognise any lock up that is a product of this failed Intergovernmental Agreement process,” Senator Colbeck said

“The environmental movement might have “claims” on some areas, but the forest industry has contracts.

“Even with the exit of Gunns Ltd, locking up our forest resources will mean existing contracts cannot be met.

“It was clear from looking at the wood supply projections at the very start of the Statement of Principles process that locking up more forest resources would cause supply shortages.

“This report does not tell us much more than we already know, but it does reinforce the quality of Tasmania’s forest management.

“Even coupes previously clear-felled and burned retain conservation value due to the high quality of forest management, confirming that forestry can co-exist with positive environmental outcomes.

“Labor must now decide between Tasmania’s viable forest industry, or the Greens and their demands.

“We know there will be no peace. Bob Brown and Christine Milne have already said they want to end native forest harvesting altogether.

“It is time for Tasmanians to tell the Government, and the Greens, that enough is enough.

“Labor and the Greens must not kill off any more of Tasmania’s forest industry,” Senator Colbeck said.