The Australian Government has welcomed the decision of the Federal Court in relation to the matter of Friends of the Leadbeater’s Possum and VicForests in which the Commonwealth’s submissions were accepted.
“The Australian Government is committed to Regional Forest Agreements, which are the best mechanism for balancing environmental, economic and social demands on our native forests,” Assistant Minister for Agriculture and Water Resources, Senator Anne Ruston said.
“With over 67,000 people employed, the forestry industry brings jobs and economic prosperity to regional Australia and we want make sure those jobs are secure into the future.
“Our strong view is that RFAs have delivered for the environment. More than 3.3 million hectares of native forest has been transferred into conservation reserves through the RFAs. This has increased the reserve system by 46 per cent.
“The government will continue to work with state governments to fulfil our promise to rollout the extensions of RFAs in all ten RFA regions across Australia.”
- In November 2017, the Friends of Leadbeater’s Possum filed an application in the Federal Court seeking an injunction to stop VicForests from logging in the Central Highlands area of Victoria.
- The Court held hearings on 14 and 15 December to consider a preliminary question of law in relation to this matter.
- The Commonwealth’s submissions were accepted by the Court.