Image for Investigating stockpiles. Last Stand in Bunbury

Jenny Webber, Huon Valley Environment Centre:

Tasmania’s ancient forests still falling, and being stockpiled in paddocks.

Conservationists from Huon Valley Environment Centre and Still Wild Still Threatened have today conducted an investigation in to the large log stockpiles in southern Tasmania.  Twenty conservationists have visited the Forestry Tasmania merchandising yard in Leslie Vale, south of Hobart and the McKays timber yard at Bridgewater, north of Hobart.

“We are very concerned that ancient forests are still being logged, while logs are stockpiling in paddocks and veneer is stockpiling at the Hobart wharf.  There appears to be an oversupply of logs, and large swathes of wildlife habitat is still being lost in the forests.

We are calling on Forestry Tasmania and Ta Ann to explain why large piles of logs are being stored in southern Tasmania,” Huon Valley Environment Centre’s spokesperson Jenny Weber said.

“We are witnessing native forests lost for the sake of propping up an unsustainable industry,” Still Wild Still Threatened’s spokesperson Miranda Gibson said.

“We have exposed a problem for the forest industry today as they are claiming that high volumes are needed for their markets, however these logs and veneer risk rot and downgrade.”  Miranda Gibson said.

“We decided to undertake this investigation after witnessing the large stockpile of Ta Ann’s veneer on the wharf, that is located under two sheds. Our organisations became aware of logs stockpiling in the forest, at Forestry Tasmania’s merchandising yard at Leslie Vale and at McKay’s timber in Bridgewater,” Jenny Weber said.

Nicola Paris, The Last Stand:

No Harvey No! Forest activists target Harvey Norman, Bunbury

This morning, two activists occupied the roof of a Harvey Norman store in Bunbury (South West Australia) with a banner stating “No Harvey No! Stop selling forest destruction”. They are intent on staying up there as long as possible and they are being supported by an instore ‘forest inspection team’ who are placing warnings on furniture sourced from native forests, and distributing information to members of the public.

‘We are here today to send a strong message to Harvey Norman.  Australia’s stunning native forests are being destroyed by industrial logging operations. They need to immediately stop selling native forest products, and sustainable alternatives need to be put in place‘ said Nicola Paris, spokesperson for The Last Stand.

Harvey Norman has been the focus of numerous campaign activities by different groups across the country. Last week activists from the Last Stand ‘broke the chain of forest destruction’; by shutting down operations at facilities in Victoria and NSW, and at a Harvey Norman store in Central Sydney. A video of that action is available here.  Actions have taken place in Melbourne, Nowra, Newcastle and across Tasmania. A viral video parodying a Harvey Norman ad has received 110,000+ hits on YouTube.

‘Right on our door step, the spectacular forests of the South West are being destroyed. We are calling on Harvey Norman to demonstrate real environmental leadership.  There are alternatives such as plantation and recycled timbers’ said Ms Paris.

Today’s peaceful actions have taken place to broadcast critical concerns with Harvey Norman’s role in the logging of Australia’s native forests, highlighted by evidence recently released by Markets for Change.1

‘Chain of custody research has clearly shown that Harvey Norman are playing a key role in destroying our native forests. Our forests are felled, shipped to China to be made into furniture, and shipped back again, ending up in Harvey Norman stores across the country’ said Ms Paris.

‘With actions happening from coast to coast across Australia we are making it clear to Harvey Norman that selling forest destruction is absolutely no way to do business in the 21st century. We are standing together to say “No Harvey No!” Stop profiting from forest destruction’ concluded Ms Paris.