28 Jul 2012, Comments (3)

Grans Lock On

Author: Helen
Two 60+ year old women sitting under a huge piece of machinery, locked on to defend logging coupes near Toolangi. Photo from RegnansTree FB group

Photo from Regnans Tree Facebook group

VicForests has been clearfelling coupes near Toolangi (Mt St Leonard) in the Central Highlands of Victoria. This cool temperate rainforest is part of the tiny remnant which remains to us in this, the most cleared State in Australia. It’s the habitat of the increasingly rare Leadbeater’s Possum, our State emblem – evidently the Victorian Government would like to join Tasmania in having an extinct species as a faunal emblem.

These forests survived the 2009 Black Saturday fires. The residents of Toolangi and Castella fear for what will happen when they are surrounded by spindly young commercial regrowth instead of wet forest.

A group of grandmothers has locked onto machinery in truly terrible winter weather. Their spirit and determination absolutely blows me away.

Toolangi resident Bernie Mace says the works are destroying the environment and it will take specialised equipment to remove the women.
“Well they’ve used some pretty elaborate apparatus which is going to require police search and rescue to remove them from this equipment,” he said.
“Well the desperation is just palpable, no matter what we do the trees just keep coming down.
“It’s a very serious matter as far as the community is concerned.”
VicForest us urging the protesters to undertake “more constructive dialogue.”

“Constructive dialogue”? Like when My Environment took them to court and won, so now they’re seeking to move the goalposts (i.e. water down the Flora and Fauna Guarantee act) to prevent that happening? Like when they obfuscate and mangle the language to try to convince others that what they’re doing is “sustainable” and “harvesting” and not at all damaging to the environment we’re all supposed to protect for future generations? Right.

Googling the womens’ courageous action today, the reponse from our mainstream media appears to be…crickets chirping. They did report this, which throws their bravery into even sharper relief.

You can make a donation to the campaign here, if you have any dollars to spare.
Crossposted at Hoyden About Town

Comments (3) »

  • Ann O'Dyne says:

    I will chain myself with the other Grandmothers if anyone wants to drive me there.
    Though it might be easier to pop down to Toorak/Lorne and punch the ‘Premier’ right in the face,
    the poor tiny possums

  • Helen says:


    I think the roads to the coupe might test the Mitsu-Bashi past its limits – I know the area in this weather O_o, but if you go on the My Environment site and make an offer, I’m sure they can get a volunteer with a proper 4WD with the added bonus of knowing how to get there w/out a 1 inch map! Tell them you’re a professional sitter 😀

  • Ann O'Dyne says:

    so we can go to Plan B then? Easier to stop it where it started than where it will be carried out.
    am so weary of nameless faceless and overpaid penpushers making evil decisions for rivers and trees. they should all keep their snouts down in their troughs and Let It Be.

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