A message from the Humane Society International:
On the 20th March the Queensland Minister for Natural Resources and Mines introduced the Vegetation Management Framework Amendment Bill, 2013 to Parliament, and it is currently under consideration by the State Development, Infrastructure and Industry Committee.
This Bill represents one of the largest environmental rollbacks in Australian history and is a clear breach of an election promise make by Premier Campbell Newman that " the LNP will retain the current level of statutory vegetation protection". Just over one year on his government has announced these proposals to remove regrowth regulations on freehold and indigenous land, and Humane Society International is strictly opposed to its fast-tracking.
Despite a stated objective of " maintaining protection and management of Queensland's native vegetation resources", it is HSI's view that the Bill conversely exposes hundreds of thousands of hectares of currently protected regrowth and remnant vegetation to clearing.
The Vegetation Management Act, 1999 has played a critical role in protecting remnant vegetation and the clearing of high value regrowth and regrowth around certain watercourses in Qld, and the proposed Bill will result in a significant weakening of associated laws. The integrity of the legislative scheme is underpinned by the application of detailed regulations and a robust methodology for the assessment of environmental outcomes, and in its current from the Vegetaiton mnagement Framework Amendment Bill undermines that integrity.
WHAT YOU CAN DO
Although the opportunity to provide an official submission to the Committee has now closed, it's not too late to let Minister Cripps and Premier Newman know what you think of the proposed changes, with the Committee due to provide its report by May 14.
Click here to send a form letter prepared by HSI (please feel free to add your own comments), or write directly using the following contact details:
The Honourable Campbell Newman MP
PO Box 15185
City East QLD 4002
The Honourable Andrew Cripps MP
Minister for Natural Resources and Mines
PO Box 15216
City East QLD 4002
NB. If you choose to write directly please forward a copy of your letter to HSI Program Manager Evan Quartermain at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more information on the impact this Bill will have if unchanged, head to HSI’s Queensland Vegetation Laws webpage.