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rainforest pulped for japanese paper - clearcutting australia's goolengook forest

nihon unipac, japan

“It is an international disgrace to see Australia’s forests destroyed to trade on the international woodchip market. These forests will ultimately end up in Japanese garbage dumps as waste paper.”

Anthony Amis, FoE Australia forest spokesperson.


Goolengook forest, located in East Gippsland, Australia, is a mix of cool and warm temperate rainforest as well as extremely rare overlap rainforest. The forest is rich in biologically diverse old growth forest, and home to rare and threatened fauna and flora including the Spot-tail Quoll, the Long Footed Potoroo, the Sooty and Powerful Owls, the Green Bird-Orchid and several varieties of tree fern.


Scientists employed by the Victorian State Government have recommended that the Goolengook forest be protected. Yet despite their recommendations and despite a five-year blockade by conservationists, logging crews arrived in March 2002 with the government’s blessing.


A large permanent police presence has allowed the logging of Goolengook to go ahead. Over 80 people trying to protect the forest’s biodiversity by building treehouses, occupying machinery and blockading roads have been arrested since the logging began.


The old growth trees will be pulped at the Eden woodchip mill on the coast of New South Wales and exported to Japan. The mill, previously owned by Daishowa Paper Manufacturing Company, now comes under the umbrella of the Nihon Unipac empire.


Friends of the Earth Melbourne continues to provide logistical support for the grassroots activists at Goolengook, and campaigns to cease all logging in old growth and forests of high conservation significance. The global appetite for paper is insatiable and growing: Victorian native forest woodchip exports last year reached an all-time annual record of 1.5 million cubic metres.


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