Otway Ranges Environment Network

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Your contribution will help protect the Otways Forests

OREN has developed overlays for use with Google Earth to expose the impacts of native logging across southern Australia. More info

See VEAC map of new Great Otway National Park.
(1.6 MB PDF)

A speaker and /or guide is available to speak to you on site in the Otways - More info or to make a booking

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Otway native forests "woodchip free" since 2008

Clearfell logging and woodchipping of all native forest on public land in the Otways is now banned and illegal. After a seven year community campaign driven by the Otway Ranges Environment Network (OREN 1995 - 2002) followed by a six year phase out period (2002-2008), the last truck load of trees for export woodchips was removed in May 2008.

After the November 2002 Victorian State election, priority was given to immediately ban clearfell logging in the Geelong water supply catchments and high conservation forests on the south face of the Otways. Before 2002, clearfell logging for woodchips was planned to occur across all the Otways under a Regional Forest Agreement until at least the year 2020.

A total ban on Otway woodchipping is unprecedented. The Otways represents the only high rainfall tall forest region in Australia, where an existing and well established native forest woodchip industry for both the domestic (to make Kleenex tissues) and export markets has been totally removed.

See "Overview OREN/Otway forest campaign (1995-2008)".

Introduction to the Otway forests

Cumberland River Otways
Cumberland River, Great Otway National Park.

The Cumberland River catchment pictured above is the last truly wild river in the Otways. It is unbelievable that the natural landscape values that produce this pure clear natural river water, were until recently, threatened by clearfell logging for woodchips in the forested headwaters.

Clearfell logged and woodchipped forests in the headwaters of the Cumberland river 1997.

Fortunately, such management was challenged by the community. Inspired local residents and conservationists campaigned against clearfell logging so the nature conservation values of the Otways could be preserved for all time.

They succeeded in 2002. Read more

New Management Plans for the Otways

The State government is going to develop new management plans for the Otways to accommodate the land use changes that have occurred with the creation of the Great Otway National Park(103,000 ha) and Otway Forest Park(39,000 ha). The community will be invited to comment on draft management plans soon to be released.  OREN will take an active role in the process and provide information on this website when it comes available.

veac map small
Click on this map to download 1MB PDF.


Featured sections of OREN website

Fire and Logging
The native forest logging industry is again wrongly blaming forest conservation measures for forest fires. However they conveniently neglect to look at their own contribution to the bush fire problems. More info

No logging in the Otway forest
A summary of the arguments against logging in the Otways native forest. More info

Forestry fails in the Otways
Breaches of the Otway Forest Management Plan. The Department regularly fails to comply with their prescriptions. More info

A speaker and /or guide is available to speak to you on site in the Otways - More info or to make a booking

Looking around the OREN website

The menu bar above has the four categories:

OREN - all about the Otway Ranges Environment Network, including latest news, events, membership, donations and helping out.

Forest Issues - all about the issues of the Otway Forests, including how water is lost through logging, endangered species, biodiversity, forest tourism, forest management and forest fires.

Logging - all about native forest logging in the Otways. Including why logging loses money for the public, what is clearfell logging, where the logging is, who logs the forest, and an explanation of how much of the forest is woodchipped.

Campaigns - all about the various parts of the campaign to stop clearfell logging in the Otways. Includes an explanation of values of particular areas, the political situation, ending logging, and what you can do.

Other - what's new, links to other sites, photos and maps of the Otways, a page for students, and a glossary of terms.


The Conservation Alliance The Conservation Alliance
The Outdoor Industry Giving Back to the Outdoors

OREN would like to thank the Conservation Alliance for their support. The Conservation Alliance is an alliance of fifteen outdoor companies which contribute a portion of their turnover to support conservation projects.

Friends of Pooh Corner

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March 2010
Logging practices elevate bushfire risk on public land.
Fact sheet (PDF)

Feb 2010.
OREN submissions to Bushfire Royal Commission.
May 2009 Submission
Feb 2010 Submission

Jan 2010
New management plan for Great Otway National Park and Forest Park released.
See Parks Victoria website

Dec 2009.
Research report shows logging practices increase bushfire risk in native forests.
See Canberra Times news
See ABC news
See Research report

Nov 2009.
Fire on public land fact sheet.
See fact sheet(PDF)

Tue 9 Sept 2009.
Fire scaremongering politics in the media.
See details.

Mon 8 Sept 2009.
OREN responds to Liberal Party bushfire scaremongering.
See Geelong Addy.

12 August 2009
Letter from VicForests to OREN in response to 17 July Crikey story.
Download letter (Pdf)

17 July 2009
Crikey story investigating if logging practices in State forests make bushfire worse.
See Crikey Story

15 July 2009
OREN responds to Liberal Party misinformation on Otway fire suppression.
See Geelong Addy (PDF).

10 March 2009
Crikey: OREN examines effectivness of fuel reduction during extreme bushfires.
See Crikey Story

Wed 18 Feb 2009.
OREN responds to rubbish being said about Otway fire suppression strategy See Geelong Addy.

Tuesday 17 Feb 2009.
Otway public land fire suppression. See details

Monday 30 June 2008.
Logging ends in the Otways, State Government press release. What every forest activist wants the government to announce!!!!!!
Read PDF.

Monday 2 June 2008
OREN submission to Otway management plan

Saturday 3 May 2008
Geelong Advertiser pays tribute to Otways campaign.
Download pdf 1300kB.

Summer 07/08
Last logging season has started. Its not over till it is over.
OREN continues to closely monitor the final Otway logging season.

Read more

25th Nov 2006
Liberal Party gets into trouble over its Otway forest policy during the State election
See details

27 Oct 2006

Victorian Rainforest Network launches new website that uses overlays for Google Earth to expose the impact of logging in Eastern Victoria. 8

Sept 2005

Environment Minister John Thwaites pays tribute to OREN15

Sept 2005
Legislation to create Great Otway National Park passed through Vic. Parliament.10th

June 2005
Victorian Premier announces creation of Great Otway National Park.

2nd January 2005

Otway nature based tourism gets
$7 million.

5th October 2004
Victorian Premier formally announces West Regional Forest Agreement, (West RFA) was cancelled in November 2002

Japan's Nippon Paper hypocritical on Otway forest logging.
More info

Geelong Council planning permit reminds Midway to avoid Otway woodchip.
More info.

23rd February 2004

The State government announces Calco licence hand back.
More info.

Logging Industry Propaganda Directory More info

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