05 October, 2010

Parks with pleasure

John Fraser, Downer, ACT

The Age (letter), 5 October 2010

Last Friday the state government declared a set of national park extensions in East Gippsland. The inclusion of Goolengook is particularly welcome after a 15-year campaign for its protection that included a five-year forest blockade.

Also welcome is the inclusion of a link between the Errinundra and Snowy River national parks. It's a relief to see a national park created with the aim of linking areas, rather than another set of tiny islands of protected forest that won't survive long term.

Credit is also due to the main groups that provided support to this campaign, namely the Goongerah Environment Centre, Friends of the Earth Forest Network and its successors, and the Victorian Rainforest Network.

As always, not everything we hoped for was included. Like many, I grieve for the huge areas on the Errinundra Plateau that have already been logged, and the parts of Goolengook logged in 1997 and 2002. But given the impossibility of changing the past, Gavin Jennings has made a wise decision. I thank him for it.

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