Saturday, October 18, 2008

mav to oppose logging in catchments

Yesterday at the MAV (Municipal Association of Victoria) State Conference the Shire of Yarra Ranges put up a motion to oppose logging in Melbourne's Water Catchments. I'm pleased to say the motion was supported 53% for and 47% against. This was a flow on my motion at Yarra Ranges to oppose logging in November 2007 (see blog entry for more info).

It is not the first time Yarra Ranges has put up this motion to the MAV, in April the vote was unsuccessful with 51% against and 49% for. Clearly times are changing and the local government sector is starting to recognise the impact of logging on our water catchment areas.

The MAV is the peak representative and advocacy body for Victoria's 79 councils. Their role is to represent and advocate the interests of local government, lobby for a 'fairer deal' for councils, raise the sector's profile, ensure its long-term security and provide advice. Now that this motion has been passed, the MAV will advocate this position to state government on behalf of the local government sector.

The wording of the Yarra Ranges motion to put to The MAV (originally moved by me on 8th April, 2008 and supported unanimously) is:

That the following statement, adopted at the Council meeting held on 27 November, 2007, namely:

"The Shire of Yarra Ranges does not support logging in water catchments.
Council recognises that:
1. Logging has a dramatic and detrimental effect on water yield in catchments.
2. Young re-growth trees need more water to grow thus releasing less water into catchments.
3. Logging reduces stream flow and yields to water catchments.
4. It takes 150 years for water yields to return to their pre-logged status.
5. It is poor water policy to continue to log our catchments.
6. Logging of water catchments adversely affects water quality through increasing sediment as does road Construction through logging coupes.
We urge the government to consider a policy of no logging in water catchments."

be presented to the next meeting of the MAV State Council requesting its support in making representations to the State Government in opposition to logging in Melbourne's water catchments.

Given what we now know about the carbon carrying capacity of these Mountain Ash forests it is even more imperative that they are protected from logging (see
blog entry for more info).

This latest support from the local government sector is great news for those who want to protect and conserve our water catchments and given this was one of my election platforms from the last council election (2005) I’m proud that I’ve been able to deliver on behalf of my community.

Note: The photos used in this blog entry are all from the Armstrong Water Catchment up near Cambarville where logging commenced earlier this year.

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