Otway Ranges Environment Network



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Liberal Party's official forest policy

Below is a press release announcing the Liberal Party's forest policy for the November 2002 Victorian State Election.

Critical here is the Liberal's commitment to support all five Victorian Regional Forest Agreements (highlighted by OREN in red). This includes the West Regional Forest Agreement which covers the Otways. By supporting the West Regional Forest Agreement the Liberals supported clearfell logging in the Otways until at least 2020.


The Liberal Party is committed to a long term and sustainable Victorian forestry industry, based on the harvest of both regrowth forest and plantation timber.

The Victorian timber industry is an important part of the Victorian economy and needs certainty based on science, not uncertainty based on politics.

In contrast, the Bracks Government has demonstrated during the last three years that it is not committed to the industry's long term sustainability.

Proper management is the key to improving the sustainability of Victoria's regrowth forests.

The Liberal Party's Forest policy, released today, is a practical plan to ensure certainty in the timber industry. The plan includes:

  • The support of the five Victorian Regional Forest Agreements signed with the Federal Government by introducing legislation to give effect to them;

  • The banning of clear felling in the Wombat Forest and working with the industry to establish better and more effective forest management and wood utilisation plans in areas of special significance. We will also move to group selective logging;
  • The initiation of an immediate review of all old growth forests;
  • Ensuring that Victorian forests are certified under the Australian Forestry Standard;
  • Ensuring forest workers are protected by ensuring the law is enforced in relation to unlawful activities in forests;
  • A commitment to accept the Federal Government's offer of funding to review forest sustainable yields, including funding made available from the Forest Industry Structural Assistance Package;
  • The implementation of an accelerated timeframe for reporting on sustainable yield in the Midlands and the Otways Forest Management areas as a priority.

We are committed to better management practices, which improve the quality of the resource for the future.

The Liberal Party will create a climate of certainty for the long term security of timber

Our plan stands in contrast with the Labor Party, which has maintained a short-term, politically driven approach to the sustainability of Victoria's forests.



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