The following comes from the Victorian National Parks Association,:
Today we took the first steps in our legal challenge against Alpine cattle grazing.
This case marks the first time in our 60 year history that the Victorian National Parks Association has taken the extraordinary step of launching court proceedings to protect national parks – the cornerstone of our conservation efforts – from damaging cattle grazing.
Represented by Environmental Justice Australia and barristers Richard Niall QC and Andrew Walker, we headed to the Supreme Court of Victoria for a directions hearing on the case. The court set a time in early July 2014 for a further hearing.
According to Felicity Millner, Director of Litigation at Environmental Justice Australia and part of our legal team, today’s hearing takes us one step closer to getting a decision from the court about whether it is legal for the government to put cattle in the national park.
At the final hearing of the case, we will be arguing the laws do not allow cattle in the Alpine National Park.
Ensuring the integrity of national parks is an investment in the future. Whether we win or lose this legal test case, the idea and importance of national parks as a haven for people and nature must be defended.
To fight this campaign we need to raise money from visionary people in Victoria. We are hoping you are one of those people.
We have to take this legal action now. In March this year, 60 cattle were rushed back into the Wonnangatta Valley, part of the heritage-listed Alpine National Park, under a flawed fire management trial by the Napthine Government.
The cattle have now left, but will be back next summer, when up to 300 head of cattle will do even more damage.
These ‘cattle grazing trials’ have been roundly criticised as flawed science that will contribute little, if anything, to our understanding of fire management. The evidence speaks for itself, you can read all about it on our website.