Two industry groups representing thousands of workers across the State have joined forces to call for
the balance between jobs and conservation to be maintained when it comes to the Tarkine.
The Tasmanian Minerals, Manufacturing and Energy Council (TMEC) and the Tasmanian Forest Products Association (TFPA) say that over the past 150 years, industry has proved it can act responsibly in the Tarkine.
TFPA Chief Executive Officer, Nick Steel, said attempts to protect previously harvested regrowth forests shows that the forestry industry is truly the ultimate renewable.
“Sustainable forestry has a long history in the area now known as the Tarkine.” Mr Steel said.
“In fact, over the past 150 years, areas of the Tarkine have been harvested a number of times. Our industry has become so good at regenerating and replanting our production forests that some people have actually called for the regrowth to be protected.
“It’s the ultimate compliment to our industry and shows that we are very good at looking after our environment.
“Forestry is a major part of the communities of the West Coast and North West Coast and sustains hundreds of families and many businesses.
“We know it’s a delicate balance, but we are prepared to put in the hard work because it’s in everyone’s interests to have a sustainable forestry industry. Without maintaining a balance, we simply wouldn’t have an industry in the area.
“We are very happy to support the TMEC campaign to ensure that people know the facts about the Tarkine and how many industries are working to protect the jobs it supports as well as the biodiversity it sustains.”
TMEC CEO, Ray Mostogl, said that while the Tarkine area is very special for a range of reasons, it is not pristine.
“We know that there are over 2,000 kilometres of roads, rail, tramways and tracks in the Tarkine. We know there are transmission lines, pipelines and two power stations in the area. We also know that there are parts of the Tarkine that are absolutely worth protecting and we support that too,” Mr Mostogl said.
“What gets lost in the debate sometimes is that this is a huge area. The Tarkine spans an area that is a similar distance as Sandy Bay to Campbell Town. There is plenty of room for industries like mining to coexist with protecting high-value areas.
“We need to work together to make sure we continue to get the balance right for future generations.”