Hooray! The newly appointed WA Environment Minister, Amber-Jade Sanderson, has announced a survey to consult the public about the future management of WA’s forests.
As we know from recent polling, the overwhelming majority of West Australians want to see the full protection of all remaining forests in the South West. For the first time ever, the State Government has now formally opened that conversation.
This survey is a testament to all of our supporters’ tireless work in spreading the word about this issue – the State Government is aware that the tide is shifting and has opened this survey to gauge the real numbers, so let’s show them!
The survey is the first stage of public consultation as the State Government starts work towards the development of the next 10-year Forest Management Plan (FMP) (2024-2033).
The current FMP was written under the Barnett Government and the emphasis was heavily placed on handing the forests over to industrial logging: largely for woodchip, firewood and charcoal. Since then, 10 football fields of precious, publicly owned Jarrah and Karri forests have been logged or cleared every single day.
Now, with the upcoming expiry of the current FMP and overwhelming calls for forests to be protected, this is the best opportunity we have ever had to protect the South West forests once and for all.
The calls for forest protection were coming in loud and clear from climate and biodiversity scientists; First Nations people and groups; the community in general; and South West businesses such as ecotourism operators and beekeepers who rely on protected native forests.
We urge everybody to fill in this survey and clearly indicate that there should be no further logging whatsoever of our South West forests.
Ninety per cent of the forest and woodland habitat in this Global Biodiversity Hotspot has already been logged or cleared – we can’t afford to lose any more. The forests and their wildlife, the streams and rivers, the rainfall, and the climate itself depend on their urgent protection.
The folks at WAFA commend Minister Sanderson and the McGowan Government for this open, thorough, and genuinely consultative first step in the development of the next Forest Management Plan which must be a plan that fully and securely protects all of our remaining South West forests.
If you’ve ever wanted to be a voice for the forests, this is your moment – the government is listening.
Fill in the survey http://bit.ly/WAForestSurvey
We have also put together a handy guide for those who’d like some suggestions for the curlier questions.
You can find it here: https://bit.ly/GuideforForestSurvey