The Guardian February 17, 1999


Immoral Boral banned in Newcastle

by Peter Mac

Newcastle City Council (NCC) has taken a new initiative in the battle to 
preserve Australia's native forests. At its meeting on February 9 the 
Council voted to have no commercial dealings with organisations involved in 
the woodchipping industry.

Specifically mentioned in the Council resolution was Boral Industries, one 
of the companies most heavily involved in the rapacious logging of native 
forests for woodchipping in NSW and other States.

The logging of native forests has been particularly savage in Victoria, 
where the Kennett Government has set prices for old growth timber as low as 
nine cents per cubic metre, compared with plantation timber at rates up to 
$10 per cubic metre. (See Guardian 3-2-99)

The council voted also to have regard to the principles of ecologically 
sustainable development in its purchasing of goods and services, and to 
establish a working party to consider sustainability and ethical standards 
in the tendering process.

The Council's decision has been hailed by other organisations opposing the 
woodchipping of native forests.

A spokesperson for the Wilderness Society, Glen Klatovsky, said: "This 
resolution paves the way for many other Councils and organisations, both 
public and private, to pursue the common goal of ending the woodchipping of 
Australia's native forests."

Mr Glatovsky added that: "Boral has had two opportunities to account for 
their practices in native forests in front of the public jury that is NCC, 
and has failed abysmally.

"It is now time for Boral to become responsible and accountable. The 
Wilderness Society will promote this historic resolution to other Councils 
with the goal of ending the senseless destruction of Australia's native 
forests".

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