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Australian Greens concerned Tiwi Islanders lumped with ‘unviable’ project

The Australian Greens are calling for Federal and Northern Territory action to ensure logging and plantation operations on Tiwi Islands are sustainable and bring benefits to the Island's community.

"I am very concerned by the admission of the administrators of the forestry project on Melville Island, that the operations as commercially unviable," said Greens Senator Rachel Siewert.

"This effectively means the Tiwi people will be lumped with a dud operation and all the risk.
"We remain unconvinced that this logging and plantation venture on Melville has been sustainable, or has made locals any better off.

"We would like to see, as a matter of priority, relevant federal and NT agencies undertake research to determine the best way to rehabilitate the plantation area, and ensure there is no more clearing," Senator Siewert said.

"I think it's also important that a full forensic financial inquiry be carried out to determine exactly how much taxpayer money has gone into this project.

"It seems to me that the best interests of the Tiwi Islanders came a poor second to narrow commercial imperatives, and the venture has not delivered to the Tiwi, the strong and sustainable cornerstone industry it promised."

The Greens' minority report to the inquiry is attached.

Media Contact: Fernando de Freitas 0417 174 302

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