A lumber coating process uses a combination of chemicals and heat to create a durable surface for timber. The process can be used to create hardwood floors and other hardwood products. However, it's often associated with using chemicals, so the technique has become a popular alternative to traditional processing. Now, a new paper by scientists at the University of Wisconsin at Madison, the U.S....
An investigation by the ABC has found a number of allegations that timber companies are engaging in serious breaches of environmental laws.
Key points:The report finds that Australian companies have been engaged in the ‘most egregious’ timber handling in the worldThis includes timber processing in forests that are considered vulnerable to climate change and droughtIn addition, the report found that the Australian industry was engaging in the most egregious forestry practices in the entire world.
The ABC’s investigation uncovered evidence of logging companies operating in Queensland’s Great Barrier Reef National Park and other parts of Queensland’s interior, and found evidence of the use of pesticides in the wood processing industry.
The report is the result of a four-year investigation by Australian Law Reform Commission (ALRC) director Pauline Taylor.
The inquiry found timber processing was one of the most serious areas of the Australian forestry industry, and it was a key factor in the decline of the Great Barrier reef.
“The Australian timber industry was one [of the] most prolific polluters of Australian forests in the last 30 years,” Ms Taylor said.
“When timber processing is involved, the world is a different place, we are a different species.”
The report found:The use of toxic chemicals in the timber processing industryThe use and abuse of chemicals in Australia’s timber processing sectorThe use, storage and export of chemicals used in forestry productsThe use in forestry practices that lead to soil erosion, fire, pests and diseasesThe impact on endangered species and ecosystemsThere were concerns in the report that the timber industry did not take its environmental responsibilities seriously.
“As a result of timber processing, the Great Australia Barrier Reef has lost around one million hectares of forestland in just three years, with a significant impact on its ecosystem,” Ms Taylors report said.
The commission also found that forestry companies were engaged in practices that could be considered to be of an “environmental concern” and that there were concerns about environmental degradation.
Ms Taylor said the commission’s investigation highlighted a need for “a strong regulator to ensure the sustainability of the industry and ensure that all the companies are subject to the highest standards of environmental responsibility”.
“The current situation is not sustainable for Australia’s forest industry,” she said.
Topics:environment,environmental-impact,environment,government-and-politics,business-economics-and/or-finance,environment-policy,environment–business-ethics,environmentaustraliaFirst posted November 23, 2018 16:41:19Contact Michelle Macdonald