With Premier Peter Gutwein taking back the Climate and Tourism portfolios there have been numerous approaches to the Premiers office by tourism and nature based adventure businesses in Bass seeking meetings to stress the impact of logging on their businesses and Brand Blue Derby.
The Premiers office has failed to respond to individual and collective requests to meet from Bass based businesses that are signatories to the letter, sent to his office on Friday February 11, calling for the Premier to declare an immediate moratorium on logging of Kruskha’s forests. To date no response has been given to the businesses inviting the Premier to meet with them in Derby to witness the impact that native forest logging is having on the community, businesses, and Brand Blue Derby.
This was added to on Friday Feb 18 when the Blue Derby Foundation (established to fundraise for maintenance of the mountain bike trails by Dorset Council) added their voice to the call for the cessation of logging currently happening in Krushka’s forests, and to halt all plans for the proposed logging in the area due to the impact on the local tourism industry, and brand Blue Derby.
The Blue Derby Foundation called upon the Gutwein Government to cease logging in the area and to facilitate an immediate independent review of the value of logging within the Blue Derby MTB precinct in light of the tourism development in the area. The information that 80% of the wood harvested is to be woodchipped, which is contrary to previous representations by STT that the wood was high grade to be used in the building industry. Declaring that an independent economic audit of the active and proposed logging is required to assess:
− The amount of money logging in that area is generating;
− The value of the timber being sourced from those coupes;
− The number of jobs logging those coupes provides;
− The impact mountain biking tourism has made to the area;
− The potential damage to the Blue Derby brand logging those coupes will cause; and
− The associated cost of damage to the Blue Derby brand.
This lack of response to correspondence, and refusal to meet with businesses who sought meetings with the Premier raises serious concerns as to whether the Premier, as Minister for Tourism, is failing in his duty to his constituents and portfolio, and instead prioritising the Government Business Enterprise, Sustainable Timber Tasmania.