Additional land not reserved yet29/12/2004
In an unsurprising appearance in the news a few days ago, doctor Senator Bob Brown said that nothing is going to happen with the re-elected government’s promise on Tasmanian forests, weight loss so he will not hold his breath about their conservation.
But what would happen if parts of the Tarkine were to be reserved? What would be the impact on Tasmania’s environmental debate if part of the Styx Valley became protected? I think that is highly unlikely that the whole areas — which go way above the 170,000 ha promised by the government — will be reserved. For once, it would probably break the RFA (Regional Forestry Agreement). On another front, it would be seen as too much a concession to the Greens.
However, if the heart of the Tarkine or the section of the Styx Valley that contains the tall trees (yes, a good part of the valley does not contain giant/tall trees) what would be the reaction of environmentalist organisations? They would probably claim that ‘the end is near’ and that ‘it is not enough’, despite of extending partial reservation to two icons of the Tasmanian environmental debate.
I may be wrong — and Bob Brown in the right path — and nothing will happen with this electoral promise. In fact, I normally do not trust politicians; however, in this case I think that the ‘John W. Howard’ reserve (mock name, of course) will be a reality pretty soon indeed.
PS. 2005-05-16. Additional reservation and other changes were announced in May. Bob was wrong.Filed in environment, forestry, politics, tasmania