The Victorian bush is once again under threat of being locked away by politicians.
70,000Ha is under immediate threat, with over 1 MILLION Hectares of public land proposed to be further locked away, into under-managed National Parks.
The Victorian Environmental Assessment Council (VEAC) is at the heart of this fight and have submitted a biased report on LOCKING AWAY this land.
Don't they protect the ecology and bring tourists to an area??
The information is out there and cannot be dismissed.
With National Parks comes the following;
Closed tracks and camping areas, ineffective feral pest and noxious weed control, increase in fuel loads which has lead to some of the worst bushfires Victoria has seen, in turn putting animals and humans lives at risk.
The economic benefits of changing an area from state forest to national park is negative.
How could anyone think banning or restricting camping, prospecting, riding (horses/trail bikes) dogs (pets and sled racing), 4wd, firewood collection, fishing, logging and mining, help the struggling rural communities??
Towns, communities and families will suffer. This is fact
Click the report below "Living in the Shadow of a National Park" for what happens when a state forest is replaced with a locked up NP.
The ratio of National Park rangers is ridiculous, they are expected to maintain, monitor and manage over 30,000Ha each and every year the VIC PARKS budget is reduced.
So how will they manage even MORE locked track, weeds and feral pests?
We want a fair and independent management plan with ongoing consultation from all bush users.
Not unreasonable, but logical.
Locking up our bush is not the solution.
27th August we took to the streets of Melbourne to protest the mismanagement of our forests and the accountability of VEAC.
#WeWantOurBushBack Rally was a great success and had much support from politicians and members of the public.
Over 1000 protestors, horses, 4wd, motorbikes and trucks.
Official government ePetition - over 6,000
Barmah petition - over 28,000
Roothy petition - over 48,000
Bushfires were forefront the conversation.
Locked National Parks are not an Environmental solution BUT a problem.
These funds will help us canvas politicians, produce informative pamphlets, pay for reports which show the REAL cost to rural communities!
Every bit helps, so please donate!
Be proud enough to tell your children they are enjoying their access, thanks to you!
Contact POLITICIANS AND POLITICAL GROUPS!
Here are the politicians who have direct links to overturning the VEAC recommendations.
Please email them and make your voice heard.
RE: VEAC - BUSH USER GROUPS UNITED
#BUGU #WeWantOurBushBack #GreenNotBlack
Land Access for All - The fight to date
This fight has been going on for decades.
Political and extreme lobbyist groups have constantly tried to
'Lock-Away' public land from normal Australians as part of a state, federal or even international political 'football.'
This is PUBLIC land and for everyday Australian to enjoy and respect.
March 2017, the Minister for Energy, Environment and Climate Change requested the biased organisation, The Victorian Environmental Assessment Council (VEAC) to undertake a Central West Investigation on huge tracts of public land. The VEAC is rife with ties to the Victorian National Parks Association and their report has recommended locking away the Central Western area of Victoria as part of a push for almost 1 million Ha of land, as NATIONAL PARKS!
They asked for submissions from community groups, organisations and general public.
They also created a 'consultation committee', setup to provide feedback and suggestions, made up of many organisations from local environmentalists and bush user groups.
No minutes were kept, No recommendations were adopted, No ideas were listened to nor discussed, the meetings were an 'Insult-tation' NOT a 'consultation'.
IT WAS A SHAM
By Dec. 2018 the VEAC had received over 2,680 submissions. Of these almost 65% rejected the idea, yet the VEAC again ignored the community and have pushed ahead with their own agenda.
The economics in the VEAC report is another example of an organisation misleading and deceiving the public, manipulating figures to suit their agenda.
VEAC claims the following ;
30 years of locked away land as a National Park, with little to no access to the current bush users is valued at over $240 MILLION !
This is a figure 'plucked' from midair.
There is no science to back this claim up, yet they have it in black and white as a valid claim??
Meanwhile they value all the bush users and communities, who currently utilise these areas and spend time and money, at less than $1 Million a year?!
This is tens of thousands of visitors - prospecting clubs, horse and trail bike riders, 4wd groups, hunters, wood cutters, miners (some the biggest in Victoria), 'grey nomads', dog sled and car rally groups, climbers etc and they think locking away groups will make communities financially better off?
WHAT A SHAM!
Don't believe me? Here is their report-read it yourself!
Meanwhile the Environment Minister, Lily D'Ambrosio and the Dja Dja Wurrung Corporation have ignored all attempts to meet and discuss with BUGU or the Prospectors and Miners Association of Victoria an area near Bendigo proposed to be locked away.
Numerous attempts to meet with the Environment Minister were ignored and in December 2018, 14,000Ha of once accessible public land in and around Bendigo, once utilised by thousands of prospectors every year, was literally locked away (see images below).
Democracy is dead in Victoria!
Bush User Groups United (BUGU) was created within the last year and has already grown to over 13,500 supporters (and growing).
We are everyday Australians, from all walks of life. Many of us have different political beliefs, religions and values, BUT our common love is enjoying the great Australian bush.
We are conservationists at heart, we are the people collecting rubbish, clearing tracks and weeds and keeping feral pest populations down.
Many of us live local to these areas and our communities rely on the income the many different bush users bring to our rural regions.
Locking up the land will decimate our communities!
We refuse to let political, inner city extremists lock away our public land access without a fight.
Dhelkunya Dja Land Management 'Strategy" Plan
This is the plan for locking up land around Bendigo. We respect Aboriginal customs and having them managing these areas is common sense, BUT not at the exclusion of thousands of other Australians!
THE ONLY RESPONSE TO DATE FROM THE MINISTER'S OFFICE
We and the PMAV HAVE CONSISTENTLY approached the Minister for Energy, Environment & Climate Change. LILY D'Ambrosio for a statement. This is as close as we have come