Carr Bans Forest Energy Burn: One Down, Two to Go!

Thursday 29 August 2002
Carr Bans Forest Energy Burn
One Down, Two To Go!
The South East Forest Alliance representing some 20 forest conservation groups today welcomed the Premier’s announcement that native forests would not be burnt for energy. However, SEFA warned that the decision did not go far enough and would not resolve public anger over the two most controversial forest issues in NSW, the South Coast Charcoal Plant and the Premier’s failure to stop woodchipping as promised.

“The Premier announced today that it is a critical element of corporate responsibility to the environment that forest ‘residues’ not be burnt for energy,” said spokespersons for the Alliance.

“Why then is the Government determined to burn South Coast forests for charcoal?

“The South Coast is still the sacrificial lamb to the timber industry.”

“The charcoal plant at Mogo near Bateman’s Bay is also a massive expansion of the woodchip industry which the Premier had promised to stop by the year 2000.”

“We now have the charcoal plant and the Eden woodchip mill set to consume nearly 700,000 tonnes a year of South Coast and Eden forests.”

“There will be another major community rally at Bateman’s Bay on Saturday 21 September to protest the South Coast Charcoal Plant and the Carr Government’s refusal to change the plant’s approval to prohibit the use of native forests for charcoal.”

“We hope that today’s announcement is the beginning of an attempt by the Carr Government to win back the core conservation vote in the face of mounting anger over native forest charcoal burning and woodchipping, The Government’s South Coast seats are particularly vulnerable as the election approaches.”

“The Carr Government must realise that its deal with the timber industry and unions to intensify native forest logging, including the introduction of charcoal production, has failed. The public expect the Premier to genuinely honour his promises to save the forests.”

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