By Tom Flanagan
HOBART — Five hundred people packed out the Hobart Town Hall on October 16 for a lunchtime public meeting against resource security legislation.
The proposed legislation will lock up 1.4 million hectares of Tasmania in permanent logging zones, with a further 320,000 hectares in deferred zones.
Speakers included the five Green Independent MPs and representatives from environmental, youth and community groups.
Green Independent Di Hollister emphasised that, contrary to government claims, resource security legislation would do nothing to protect jobs in an industry which has shed 5000 jobs since 1970.
Reg Burgess from the Tasmanian Aboriginal community pointed out that the traditional owners of the land had not been consulted, despite claims of wide community consultation on the legislation.
Julie Lawless from the Environmental Youth Alliance read a passage written by a native American explaining the intricate relationship between humanity and the rest of nature. Sam Wainwright, also from EYA, called on people to campaign for a future where people and the environment come first.
Christine Milne said that resource security legislation was all about giving timber companies quick access to old growth forests, a resource which will not have a market in 10 years because of plantation timber in the Third World.
Dr Bob Brown drew a parallel with the Franklin River campaign. Today, he said, the Labor and Liberal parties both support resource security and offer no option to the people of Tasmania.
The Green Independents have vowed to move no confidence in the government if the proposed legislation is tabled in parliament.