Investigate the EPA in WA. #100DaysOfBlogging #Day18

EPA of WA should be under investigationNew South Wales are conducting a Parliamentary Inquiry into the effectiveness and performance of that states Environmental Protection Authority.

The move comes after a string of controversial decisions by the EPA and criticism that it was “more focused on protecting polluting industries than looking after the community and human health”. I’d agree with that assessment and would say it also applies to the EPA here in Western Australia too.

The Environmental Protection Act of 1986, in outlining the functions of the Environmental Protection Authority states as one of it’s key functions, this:

“to coordinate all such activities, whether governmental or otherwise, as are necessary to protect, restore or improve the environment in the State”

In WA they are at best terribly ineffective at their job.

Back in 2006, the transportation of ‘lead carbonate’ for export by Magellan Metals lead to large-scale poisonings in Esperance. Kids had high levels of lead in their bloodstream. Birds literally fell from the sky. Continue reading Investigate the EPA in WA. #100DaysOfBlogging #Day18

Palm Oil, what’s the big deal? #100daysofblogging #Day10

Forest Destruction in SumatraThere are so many things we should avoid in our food for health reasons; aspartame, high fructose corn syrup, etc. Palm Oil is not one of those. It’s perfectly fine for consumption.

The problem with palm oil is the destruction of native peat forests in Indonesia. 

The logging and ‘drainage’ of peat forests, for ‘oil palm’ plantations, results in millions of years of built up carbon and methane gas being rapidly released. Normally this built up organic matter is saturated with water, locking in the carbon and methane. This prevents the peat below the forest from being rapidly emitted or catching fire.

But these areas are actively ‘drained’ of water in order to plant oil palm.

The rich organic matter of a peat forest is then open to catching fire, as they repeatedly have in recent years, to devastating effect.

So what is at stake with palm oil plantations in Indonesia? Continue reading Palm Oil, what’s the big deal? #100daysofblogging #Day10

Protect Native Forests! (Back to the roots) #100daysofblogging #day5

250+ year old tree felled.I first posted about the WA Forest Alliance and their fight to save our native Karri forests in December last year.

It was possibly the most popular post on this blog, ever. Today I will give you an update. There’s some bad news and some good.

We’ll start with the bad…

I went back down to the forest recently to find a big beautiful tree I had photographed previously had been logged, oh and the whole area around it too. That would be the tree you can see all those people sitting on and putting their hands on in the photo above.

I was standing on the stump as I took the photo with my phone.

It was a dreadful and surreal moment.  Continue reading Protect Native Forests! (Back to the roots) #100daysofblogging #day5

Logging in WA’s South West

Recently I took part in a guided tour of our remaining native Karri forests with the West Australian Forest Alliance . I remember visiting these forests as a child, it is always inspiring. The first time I climbed the Gloucester tree near Pemberton I was barely in my teens. At 72m tall, the Gloucester tree was the highest 14-year-old me had ever been.

Clear Felling in WA's Challar Forest

When I heard the new Forest Management Plan will double the scale of logging in our remaining Karri forests (1), I wanted to see the implications of this for myself. I knew it would be painful to see, but I had to go. I had to bear witness and share the tragic reality of clear-felling with you.

Only 10% of our native Karri forest remain today, BEFORE logging expands.

After what I witnessed I have no doubt this new plan, if allowed to continue, will leave us with no pristine Karri forest left. It’s no wonder activists have begun taking direct action to halt the destruction (1,2,3).

I am very glad they have.

Continue reading Logging in WA’s South West