Bob Brown’s High Court loss a win for forestry communities

The High Court has rejected a bid to appeal a Federal Court decision that the Regional Forest Agreement in Tasmania meets the definition of Federal environment law.

Now that this case has been lost, the Bob Brown Foundation must withdraw its protesters from Tasmania’s West Coast where they have invaded a working forest area to protest the Rosebery mine’s storage facility.

The High Court rejection confirms the Full Federal Court ruling and clarifies the relationship between the EPBC Act and the RFA.

Eric Abetz, Liberal Senator for Tasmania, welcomed the news stating that many Tasmanian businesses, forest workers and their families faced an uncertain future if the legal case had been successful.

“This decision confirms the previous Full Court decision in February that the Tasmanian Regional Forest Agreement meets the requirement of both its Act and that of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act,” Senator Abetz said.

Senator Abetz has previously criticised Bob Brown and his “eco- charity” for taking similar legal action, which is often referred to as “lawfare” and is a well-documented campaign tactic of the green movement.

“Bob Brown and his foundation have yet again failed in their attempt to deny jobs and sustainability of regional communities in the harnessing of a truly renewable resource. 

People are unwittingly donating to a foundation which is splashing around its funds on doomed legal processes for cheap publicity stunts.”

“Yet again, Bob Brown has got it wrong, very wrong, and the High Court has said so. As is their want, the extreme Greens never admit they are wrong and simply ramp up their rhetoric in the face of being comprehensively proven wrong.”

“This ruling should provide certainty for our hardworking forestry communities and their families.”

It also demonstrates that the special status of environmental lobby groups to take legal action is something that should be removed under the EPBC Act and brings into question the use of tax-deductible charity donations to fund legal action,” Senator Abetz concluded. 

About Eric

Eric Abetz has been a Liberal Senator for Tasmania since 1994 and has served in a range of Leadership, Ministerial and Shadow Ministerial roles.

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