Back to All News

GREENS National Initiative on Forests and Climate POLICY

 Launceston. Both Labor and the Coalition are promoting Gunns' Tamar Valley pulp mill which, together with two Gunns' export woodchip mills, will consume more than 200,000 hectares of native forests over the next 20 years.  The mill will increase national greenhouse gas emissions by up to two per cent.
The Greens' plan in Tasmania, launched in Launceston today by Greens leader Bob Brown, is to:

  • Back the proposed 20,000 hectare North East Highlands National Park proposal, based on the Blue Tier and Mt Victoria.  The Greens also support World Heritage nomination for forests adjoining the current World Heritage area.
  • Prevent the pulp mill.  Greens leader Bob Brown says he is committed to opposing the mill 'before, during and after' any construction.  The Greens will not recognise the Wood Supply Agreement for the mill, due to override on the Regional Forest Agreement to feed native forests to the mill until 2027.

The Greens' National Initiative on Forests and Climate complements and expands the government's Global Initiative On Forests And Climate. 
There are five key actions:

  • Assess the greenhouse gas emissions which will be generated by Gunns proposed pulp mill, including from logging, estimated to be 2% of Australia's total.
  • Establish a five-year $1 billion Forests and Climate Fund to implement the transition of the wood products industry from native forests to existing –plantations and provide funding the manage forests and other native vegetation for ecological services including  climate protection, biodiversity and water.   The program can be funded by the abolition of forestry MIS schemes from December 31 2007.
  • Include agriculture  and forestry in Australia's Emissions Trading System and do not give credits  for new plantations unless emissions from logging and clearing are costed.
  • Urgently upgrade Australia's CO2 accounts for Land Use, Land Use-Change and Forestry.  This will require improved measurement methodologies, especially for native forests, and disaggregation of data so that emissions and uptake are separately reported and native vegetation is distinguished from plantations, crops and pasture.
  • Expand Australia's commitment to the Global Initiative on Forests and Climate by extending the government's one-off $200 million program into, initially, $200 million per annum for five years.  This will fund on-ground programs and technology transfer and be complemented by a ban on importing rainforest logs.

These actions would rapidly reduce emissions from land use-change and forestry in Australia, potentially saving up to 80 Mt CO2 per annum.  Bringing our domestic policies into line with those being promoted through Australia's Global Initiative would give it greater credibility and the increased financial commitment would make a material contribution to reducing emissions globally.

Back to All News