The federal Minister for the Environment, Ian Campbell, put legislation through the Senate last night to ban his own environmental assessment of the impact on forests of Gunns proposed pulp mill in Tasmania. Labor backed the measure.
The Stern Report call for an end to global deforestation because it has a worse impact on climate change than urban transport nails Gunns' proposed pulpmill in Tasmania as a climate change villain, Greens Leader Bob Brown said in Canberra today.
"Destroying Tasmania's old growth forests is destroying one of the world's biggest hedges against climate change. Yet the pulpmill is predicated on continuing old growth logging for decades. It is totally out of whack with Sir Nicholas Stern's call for an end to old growth logging."
Greens Leader Bob Brown says he thinks the National Association of Forest Industries is right to claim credit for moves to muzzle the ABC.
"The relegation of the recent rally of 8,000 Launcestonians against the Gunns' pulp mill to fourth item on ABC TV news in Tasmania, and zero coverage on the mainland, is evidence NAFI is right. The frequent absence of ABC TV from Greens press conferences on Tasmanian forest issues when commercial outlets turn up also points to editorial self-censorship," Senator Brown said.
Labor and the Greens today voted against a Liberal Senate motion noting, "the vital role in the Tasmanian economy played by the forestry industry, and the need to support this industry and the building of a pulp mill in Tasmania."
The motion attacked 'green groups' for their campaign against Gunns.
Earlier however, Labor sided with the Government to oppose Greens Senator Bob Brown's amendment deploring "Gunns' destruction of Tasmania's ancient forests and wildlife."
The third writ by giant woodchip company Gunns Ltd, against the so-called "Gunns 20" defendants, was rejected by Justice Bongiorno in the Victorian Supreme Court in Melbourne this morning.
"This is a huge victory for those of us fighting against Gunns' destruction of Tasmania's ancient forests and wildlife," Greens Leader Bob Brown said outside the court today.
The Minister for Industry, Tourism and Resources, Ian Macfarlane, has refused to make public any details of his meetings with Gunns Ltd about the proposed pulp mill in Tasmania.
After delaying his reply to a request for information about the meeting from Greens Leader Bob Brown, Minister Macfarlane wrote, "I and my department have met with representatives of Gunns Ltd. The date and subject of these meetings are confidential between Gunns Ltd and myself."
The Australian Greens today called on federal Environment Minister Ian Campbell to refuse permission for Gunns Ltd's polluting pulp mill to proceed in Tasmania.
Greens Senator for Tasmania Christine Milne marked World Environment Day by announcing a national campaign, appealing to all Australians concerned about the future of Tasmania's native forests, marine life and the future of clean, green ventures that are the foundation for an ecologically sustainable future for Tasmania.
The federal government should halt all public subsidies to Gunns' proposed native forest-based pulp mill in Tasmania and explain to taxpayers why their funds are being directed to a project which is ecologically unsustainable and will never be cost competitive, the Greens said today.
"Why is it that the federal government's passion for economic rationalism is not inflamed by the report from CommSec that says that the Gunns' pulp mill is not cost competitive?" Tasmanian Greens Senator Christine Milne said.
From snowy Montreal, to London to Launceston, thousands are gathering today to stand up for the global climate and what better way to stand up for the global climate than to stand up against deforestation and for the protection of old growth forests. For climate change is driven by deforestation as much as it is driven by industrial and transport emissions.