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The revelation that Federal Environment Minister Tanya Plibersek plans to hand localities over to ‘fast track development’ will run a chill through communities everywhere, Bob Brown said in Hobart today.

“The minister failed to name a single positive outcome for a threatened species or locality anywhere in Australia,” Bob Brown said.

Today’s highly-orchestrated announcement of Australia’s new environmental laws coming down the track includes designating localities around the nation for ‘fast track development’, the logging of more native forests and woodlands, selective sacrifice of threatened species habitat, and a firm ‘no’ to the climate trigger environmentalists have demanded for years.

“The UN says the world must first protect what’s left of nature. Minister Plibersek’s plan is for continued, more selective erosion of our natural treasures,” Bob Brown said.

Here are some tests of Plibersek as we await the details of her policy ‘way down the track’:

• Will she protect Tasmania’s takayna rainforests from Chinese government-owned mining giant MMG’s avoidable proposed waste dump?
• Having seen early works kill critically-endangered Western Ring-tailed Possums, will she reverse her decision to let WA Main Roads bulldoze the Gelorup woodland?
• Does she oppose more coal, oil and gas projects?
• Will she implement the precautionary principle in legislation including for her EPA?

“Minister Plibersek will NOT end native forest and woodland destruction, a major, needless factor driving hundreds of species, including koalas, Swift Parrots, cockatoos, owls, possums and gliders, to extinction,” Bob Brown said.

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