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Time to end native forest logging: voters don’t want it and don’t need it

The South East Region Conservation Alliance (SERCA) sees the coming election as our best chance in many years to make meaningful cuts in carbon emissions by ending native forest logging.

Spokesperson for SERCA, Harriett Swift says that ending native forest logging in NSW will save around 3.6 million tonnes of carbon each year.

“It is the quickest, cheapest and easiest way to achieve Australia’s goal of a 43% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions from 2005 levels by the year 2030.

“Political candidates can no longer afford to ignore public opinion on protecting forests for the climate and for the wildlife.

Through whichever lens we view it, there are powerful reasons to end it, especially on the south coast where it is driven by export woodchipping,” Ms Swift says.

“It means more bushfires and does nothing to address the supply of materials for the construction industry. Wood from our region’s forests goes overwhelmingly to woodchips, not to furniture or building,” she says.

“The community does not want it and does not need it. Opinion polls over many years have shown a majority of Australians, including in regional NSW do not support native forest logging.

“In the Black Summer bushfires, when 80% of NSW South Coast State Forest was burnt, we lost millions of animals and we can look forward to more extinctions unless we stop.

“It is time for NSW to join WA and Victoria, which have announced they will stop native forest logging -WA by 2024 and Victoria by 2030. NZ stopped in 2001.

“NSW already has a thriving plantation sector and this can be strengthened if taxpayers stopped propping up native forest destruction with massive subsidies.

“A just transition must recognise that many workers have valuable skills in demand and – with proper TAFE and other support - could readily be deployed in the plantation sector or other industries. 

Date: 13 March 2023

Photos: Eden chipmill woodchip piles     Logged and burnt forest