Taking hollows from forest
Mark B Tame, Strathbogie
I REFER to the letter from Mark Blackwell ‘Two sides of the forest debate” ( Gazette, November 23).
First let’s be clear what this discussion is about.
On the one hand members of the Strathbogie community are saying let’s have an independent evaluation of forest values and how best to manage them before logging forests in a way that will take decades to recover.
On the other hand Mr Blackwell, speaking from his background in the logging industry, says the community has neither a right nor a reason to object to being deprived of their forests.
He says only the biggest and best trees will be logged; trees he “would be delighted to go through any mill [he] ran”.
Sadly Mr Blackwell, many of the trees are not going anywhere near a sawmill but straight to firewood as VicForests admitted this week (VicForests 23.11.16).
Mr Blackwell admits ‘stags’ with hollows were marked for felling.
Trees with hollows are the most important breeding centres in our forests. Taking trees with hollows out of a forest is like taking hospitals, schools and motels out of country towns.
Unfortunately Mr Blackwell also resorts to “playing the man”.
He attacks the Strathbogie Ranges Conservation Management Network (CMN) for simply doing what our constitution says we were set up to do; protecting and enhancing biodiversity in the Strathbogie Ranges.
On several occasions now he has attempted to denigrate this organisation with his conspiracy theories.
Can I say to Mr Blackwell: Strathbogie Ranges CMN is on open organisation. Anyone can join. Our audited accounts are available. Program funds are accounted for to our funders.
Instead of attending our recent AGM, advertised on our website, or corresponding directly with the committee, he resorts to attacking the organisation and volunteers on our committee both in the Gazette and the Community Noticeboard. Bad form. The Strathbogie Sustainable Forest Group is supported by Mr Blackwell’s neighbours, members of his own community.
Contrary to Mr Blackwell’s claims Strathbogie Ranges CMN has not been in position to fund this group. It has certainly not diverted funds received for other purposes. Michael Spencer President Strathbogie Ranges Conservation Management Network
Abuse) Bill 2016;
Amendment (Succession and Related Matters) Bill 2016; Ban) Bill 2016; ment (Development Victoria) Bill 2016.
More information on the proposed Bills can be found at www.parliament.vic.gov.au/legislation.
Steph Ryan (MLA, Euroa)