The Federal Government would abandon a plan to log in Tasmania’s Planet Heritage Location if it was not ratified by the United Nations environment committee.
UNESCO has previously mentioned it does not help the logging of specialty species timbers in the Wilderness Planet Heritage Area, which covers about 20 per cent of Tasmania, about 1.6 million hectares.
The Federal Government has supported the proposal for logging outlined in the Tasmanian Government’s draft management program for the region.
The Government wants to open up just below 200,000 hectares for logging of some type, about 12 per cent of the Planet Heritage Area (WHA).
A UN delegation not too long ago visited the state to assess the practices and meet with stakeholders, with a final report expected next year.
The Assistant Minister for Agriculture, South Australian Senator Anne Ruston, mentioned the logging strategy would be scrapped if UNESCO did not help it.
“When they bring down that report I would be truly surprised if the Federal Government did anything other than respect these decisions,” she said.
“We respect the choice of UNESCO.”
Tasmanian boat builder Andrew Denman makes use of specialty species timbers and is worried about the prospect.
“It is a concern, we totally anticipate the Federal Government to go into bat for the specialty species timber sector,” he stated.
“It is a significant concern that the resource is now primarily behind closed doors.”
Senator Ruston mentioned she had some sympathy for users of specialty species timber.
“They also have an argument which is affordable, that they have very low effect exactly where they take those timbers from,” she stated.
The Tasmanian Government also said it would abide by UNESCO’s call.
Subjects: timber, federal—state-issues, tas