Where are the “checks” on Environmental Lobbyists?

Published: Tue 8 Feb 2011 11:35 AM
For Immediate Release
Time for New Zealand to Fight Back – Where are the “checks” on Environmental Lobbyists?
False accusations from Conservation International claiming New Zealand is second on the list of deforestation ‘hotspots’ have damaged New Zealand’s green reputation.
Although the accusation doesn’t match the New Zealand forest industry’s long-standing proactive approach towards sustainable forestry, New Zealanders did not think to check the facts and vigorously defend our rightful green reputation.
John Stulen Chief Executive of the Forest Industry Contractors Association (FICA) says, “The New Zealand forest industry has been recognized among its peers globally as being ahead of the game on protecting native forestry.”
New Zealand has a vast amount of government officials in conservation, environment and forestry departments, none of whom were proactive in defending our conservation efforts.
John Stulen says, “Not one government department or minister of parliament picked up on the slur, investigated the facts nor called for a retraction from the originator.”
Although the truth is now out that New Zealand was actually 22nd rather than 2nd on the Conservation International list, there is still no widely publicised retraction of the statement.
New Zealand has recognized the importance of sustainable forestry for over 100 years, well before the rest of the world. The 1991 Forest Accord, an agreement between the New Zealand forestry industry and environmental groups, is a great example of this.
“Conservation International wrongfully slammed New Zealand as the second highest destruction of wildlife habitat and the only kick back came from one forestry group – the New Zealand Institute of Forestry,” says Mr Stulen.
New Zealand’s non-response about the wrongful accusations leads Mr Stulen to liken New Zealanders to our national icon the Kiwi bird; struggling to defend ourselves.

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