MEDIA RELEASE: TFPA releases its election scorecard

The Tasmanian Forest Products Association (TFPA) has today released its 2024 election scorecard, showing both major parties to be strong supporters of the Tasmanian forestry industry.

Speaking at the launch of the scorecard, TFPA Chief Executive Officer Nick Steel said that it was pleasing to have support from across the political spectrum. However, three key policy decisions separated the two major parties.

“It’s been great to see such strong support for the Tasmanian forestry industry in the 2024 election,” Mr Steel said.

“But our rating system placed Tasmanian Labor slightly ahead of the Liberals as the industry’s biggest supporters.”

Mr Steel said it was only the Liberals policies to activate their so-called wood bank, and not include private forest estate owners in the TasGRN emergency communications network, that cost them the number one position.

“The TFPA has long advocated for a holistic approach to the Future Potential Production Forest (FPPF) land – reviewing the entire estate to determine best use; either for forestry, aboriginal management or conservation reserves,” Mr Steel said.

“Similarly, it’s integral that our private estate owners are included on the TasGRN network, as that’s the key communications tool to protect Tasmanians when fire threatens our community. By ignoring that request, we believe lives and livelihoods are put at risk.”

However, Mr Steel also said Labor didn’t completely meet the TFPA election wish list either, calling for a stop (as opposed to a pause) in the Sustainable Timber Tasmania (STT) plantation process.

“Continuity of supply in our public hardwood estate is essential for the future of our forestry industry. That’s why we’ve always called for a temporary pause in STT’s plantation process,” Mr Steel said.

“However, apart from those decisions, both major parties have shown strong support for the forestry industry and the TFPA believes both major parties are committed to protecting jobs and businesses.”

Mr Steel said that while both major parties have strongly backed our sustainable forestry industry, it was disappointing other parties did not show the same support.

“The Jacqui Lambie Network did show support for forestry – however its lack of policy detail cost it dearly on the scorecard,” Mr Steel said.

“And of course, the Tasmanian Greens once again showed that not only are they the enemy to the thousands employed our industry, but their policies pose a real risk to all industries across Tasmania.

“And while we only assessed the four largest parties in the election, our scorecard makes special mention to our friends of forestry, awarding both John Tucker and the Shooters, Fishers and Farmers Party honourable mentions.

“This scorecard offers a quick and easy way for people in Tasmania, who care about our sustainable forestry industry, to determine where they should put their vote in Saturday’s poll.

“And no matter the result of this weekend’s election, the TFPA stands ready to work with whichever political party can form government for the coming years, helping to grow and develop our industry, and support the thousands of workers across rural and regional Tasmania employed by our members.

The TFPA election scorecard can be downloaded here, and its election wish list is available here.


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