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Vic Government hails forestry decision greatest ever

Victoria’s Environment Minister Lily D’Ambrosio with members of the Save Our Strathbogie Forest group at Strathbogie on Thursday

The State Government has described the decision as “the largest environmental protection policy in the state’s history’’, with immediate protections for the iconic Greater Glider species, native fauna and Victoria’s remaining old-growth forest. Source: Timberbiz

The decision, which includes a gradual phase out of all logging in native forests by 2030, will reduce the amount of carbon in the atmosphere by 1.71 million tonnes of carbon-dioxide-equivalent each year for 25 years – the equivalent of taking 730,000 cars off the road annually.

Under the plan, 90,000 hectares of Victoria’s remaining rare and precious old growth forest – aged up to 600 years old – will be protected immediately.

The announcement also includes the release of the Greater Glider Action Statement, an important roadmap to protect this iconic species, which was first listed as threatened in 2017.

“We’re taking this step to protect our precious natural gifts for generations to come, while striking the right balance between the environment and jobs,’’ Minister for Energy, Environment and Climate Change, Lily D’Ambrosio said while visiting the Strathbogie Ranges yesterday.

“By ending the destruction of our old growth forests immediately, we’re protecting the habitat of our Greater Gliders, Leadbeater’s Possums, and many other threatened species.”

To protect the future of the Greater Glider – alongside the Leadbeater’s Possum and more than 35 other threatened species – the Action Statement maps out more than 96,000 hectares of forest across Victoria immediately exempt from logging.

This habitat has been identified by experts as being critical to the survival of the Greater Glider and a range of other precious flora and fauna – many of which are not found anywhere else on earth.

These additional protections will provide over 186,000 hectares of area now protected from logging – equivalent to more than 100,000 MCGs and the biggest addition to our reserve system over 20 years.

aBy 2030, Victoria will be home to an area of native forest protected from logging that is larger than the entire land mass of Tasmania.