TO THE EDITOR
Mr McArthur should take more care to
check the validity of logging industry public relations
material before he publishes it under his own name. His
arrogant, misinformed and personal attack upon Mr Chris
Tipler from the Otway Ranges Environment Network only
serves to inflict Kennett style damage upon the Federal
Liberal Party (GA 14/3/200).
Mr Macarthur claims that "the harvesting
of forest coupes takes place primarily for quality sawlogs
which have much more economic value than woodchips [which]
are an inevitable by-product of harvesting sawlogs."
Yet statistics prepared for the West Regional Forest Agreement
on behalf of his own government reveal that only 22% of
native trees from the entire West Region are made into
sawn timber. Just 2% of that timber can be used in appearance
This data also shows that the sawn timber
component of the logging industry is running at an annual
$2.5 million loss. The only way the logging industry can
survive is through woodchipping the vast majority of clearfelled
trees from our native forests using automated processing
machinery and a minimum of waged labour.
Reputable scientists speaking at the
December ‘Water Summit’ in Geelong agreed that clearfell
logging reduces both water yield and quality. Why does
Mr McArthur disregard established fact on this issue?
As Mr Tipler points out economic losses incurred by ratepayers
and industries from logging damage in water catchments
will have a long term impact upon regional development.
Both the State and Federal Governments
are obviously very nervous about the water issue. Why
else has there been no logging in any of Geelong’s catchments
this season? I challenge Mr McArthur to stand in front
of his constituents and declare that he is happy for Geelong’s
water catchments to be logged. Then we’ll all get to see
where the axe falls.
Geelong Community Forum Inc.