Matt Smith reported (‘Heritage sites get UN check. Team on way to state’, in Sunday Tasmanian 8 Nov 2015) that Tasmanian government agencies and land conservation associations are ‘gearing up for a visit from UNESCO officials who investigate concerns about logging and mining in World Heritage Areas’. Apparently UNESCO’s World Heritage Committee has concerns about the current Tasmanian government’s ‘plan to allow logging and mining in the state’s 1.5 million hectares of protected world heritage area. The World Heritage Committee has repeatedly reiterated its position that mineral exploration and exploitation is incompatible with World Heritage status’. Acting Environment, Parks and Heritage Minister Jeremy Rockliff is reported as saying, ‘We recognise the importance and significance of the TWWHA (Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Area) and the importance of managing it in a way that is respectful of its natural and cultural values’. I hope to see UNESCO’s decision is accepted.
The forests needs to be assessed in a controlled way for selective removal of timber for restoration of historic boats and furniture and houses. Further, more access is needed for living creative crafts people and builders of boats etc so that there is enough timber for them to continue to promote their skills and showcase the unique Tasmanian timbers. The Committee needs to hear and accept that both can co-exist.
You make a good point. I hope the Committee considers this.