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".