By Dr David Leaman
Reproduced from Tasmanian Times
Someone at the current round table (forest industry peace meeting) formed to “solve” the forest debate is unhappy – otherwise we would not be able to read a leaked draft document. And, rightly so, since it appears that the same old errors are being made by much the same people.
The panelists lack some key players.
This is stupid blunder number 1 for there must be full inclusion of interested and affected parties – including farmers and land owners.
There also seems to have been no consideration of the future and the planning of resources and community needs but then I would not expect this of groups who cannot see beyond trees.
In the third edition of my book, WATER-facts, issues, problems and solutions (2007) I included two essays as appendices THE REAL ISSUE IN TASMANIA’S FORESTS, THE CONSERVATION ERROR IN TASMANIA’S FOREST DEBATE (pages 156, 159). The content remains as valid, if long ignored, as when written several years earlier. Supporting information and science is in the book plus a 2008 addendum and a reviewed summation listed as (Leaman, D. E., 2008. Comparative Assessment of Catchments in Eastern Tasmania – issues for Management. WATER DOWN UNDER 2008. Proceedings 4th International Conference on Water Resources and Environment Research, Adelaide, April. Pages 542-554. Engineers Australia).
The issues go much wider than narrow definitions of native or old-growth forests. Any trade off involving plantations and pulp mills must include the interests of people affected and the wider environment.