Forest & Wood Communities Australia has lodged a complaint to the Australian Press Council following an appalling hatchet job on the industry published in The Monthly. We have also complained directly to the editor and provided a detailed critique to outline dozens of issues with the author’s work which appears to be nothing other than fawning support for the timber industry’s most strident opponents.
The Weekend Australian Magazine recently ran a 4-page assault on Victoria’s native timber industry focusing on the recent Federal Court decision. We understand that some industry leaders were interviewed for an hour or more by the journalist Ricky French who then ignored their information and persisted with the activist perspective.
Forest & Wood Communities Australia added its voice the Victorian Government’s Inquiry into Ecosystem Decline in Victoria. The inquiry was the result of a motion by The Greens in October 2019 which was backed by the Labor Government. “We see this as yet another cynical move by The Greens and Labor’s green faction to increase the pressure on the government to lock up even more forest,” said FWCA managing director Justin Law.
Not since the Tasmanian ‘forest wars’ have timber workers and their communities felt more besieged by malicious and carefully co-ordinated attacks on forestry and their jobs. Corporate activist organisations have ramped up their efforts to close down the industry in Western Australia, NSW, Victoria and Tasmania, which comes on the back of rural communities already hit by drought, bushfire and short-sighted government policy. Piling on are the minnow groups, who peddle outrage like hemp shirts at a community market, as they fund vexatious litigation against forestry operations.
The decision by hardware retailer Bunnings to refuse to stock Victorian timber sourced from VicForests is a hypocritical knee-jerk reaction, said Forest & Wood Communities Australia Managing Director, Justin Law. Last month, Bunnings bowed to activist pressure by refusing stock timber from native hardwood harvested in Victoria following the Federal Court’s findings in a case brought against VicForests by activist donation collection group, Friends of Leadbeater’s Possum.
Forest & Wood Communities Australia supports the call for the Bob Brown Foundation (BBF) to be stripped of its charity status after encouraging its members to engage in unlawful activism. Tasmanian forestry advocate Kelly Wilton has demanded action against the BBF after a number of trees due for harvest had metal spikes driven into them resulting in near-death incidents at two saw mills.