Media Releases - 13 April 2023
Tourism peak body's condemnation of Tasmanian logging fires & smoke pollution welcome
Wilderness Society welcomes the leadership of Tourism Industry Council (TICT) in condemning negative impacts of toxic smoke from unnecessary logging fires on tourists and tourism operators
A more sustainable tourism industry in Lutruwita / Tasmania could complement the transition to a more sustainable plantation-based forestry future—like New Zealand did in 2002 and Victoria & Western Australia are moving towards
Problem is more than just logging fires—a more sustainable tourism industry cannot continue to support logging that degrades beautiful forest landscapes tourism operators depend on and that people come from around the world to experience
Lutruwita / Tasmania moving on from forest destruction sets up a value-added tourism industry and an exciting vista of new forest tourism opportunities
The Wilderness Society Tasmania welcomes the first-ever instance (that we are aware of) of the Tourism Industry Council publicly condemning the negative impacts of unnecessary logging fires on tourists and tourism operators.
“We welcome this leadership by the Tourism Industry Council (TICT) in condemning the recent widespread and unnecessary toxic smoke choking the state’s public airspace from unnecessary logging fires that impacted tourists and tourism operators,” said forest campaigner, Alice Hardinge.
“We agree with the TICT that a new approach is needed but addressing logging fires is just the start. We also agree that the future of transition towns like Maydena and Derby is tourism not logging and that these communities need to be supported instead of being abandoned, while their local forests are logged against their wishes.
“The problem is bigger than just logging fires. A more sustainable tourism industry cannot continue to support the logging industry that destroys the beauty of forest landscapes that local tourism operators depend upon. Logged and charred forests aren’t a tourist drawcard. Forests are more valuable as public assets for tourism than logging for a loss.
“The TICT continuing to support logging also undermines the tourism industry’s net-zero aspirations. And the line that tourism can coexist with logging is unrealistic: the logging industry’s forest destruction destroys beautiful forests that tourists appreciate, and that the tourism industry depends on.
“A more sustainable tourism industry in Tasmania could complement the transition to a more sustainable plantation-based forestry industry that no longer logs its forests—like New Zealand decided in 2002 and Victoria and Western Australia are heading towards too.
“Lutruwita / Tasmania moving on from forest destruction could also set up a lower-risk tourism industry alongside a more sustainable plantation-based forestry industry. This could open a new vista of forest tourism opportunities throughout the currently government-owned forests, like new Aboriginal-owned, run and land-returned tourism opportunities and giant tree tourism possibilities, among others. We encourage the TICT to continue to take steps in this direction,” said Ms Hardinge.
For further comment, please contact Alice Hardinge on 0421 819 679.