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Mountain Journal

Environment, news, culture from the Australian Alps

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forests

Climate change threatens Melbourne’s water and mountain ash forests

The Central Highlands to the east of Melbourne are home to incredible stands of Mountain Ash (Eucalyptus regnans). They are valuable in their own right and also offer space, quiet, recreation, and are a home to a wealth of animal species. The catchments of the Central Highlands also provide much of Melbourne’s drinking water.

According to new research, Melbourne faces a rising threat to it’s water supplies from climate change as higher temperatures diminish inflows while pushing up demand.

A paper published by Environment Research Letters shows a “substantially” amplified risk for Melbourne’s water availability if global temperatures rise 2 degrees above pre-industrial levels rather than the 1.5-degree target set by the Paris climate agreement.

Continue reading “Climate change threatens Melbourne’s water and mountain ash forests”

Victorian public wants to see forests protected

Results of a public survey conducted by the Victorian government show overwhelming support for protecting native forests from logging, and provide the Andrews Labor government with a strong platform to protect forests and transition jobs out of the native forest logging sector, say environment groups.

The survey shows that:

  • The public think that the future of industry is in plantations
  • Victorians support protecting forests and improved forest recreation opportunities
  • Results show no need to continue with the failed Regional Forest Agreements

Continue reading “Victorian public wants to see forests protected”

Castella forest about to be logged

Logging appears to be imminent in this very important forest in Castella near Toolangi, to the east of Melbourne.

The Castella coupes are a stronghold for a diversity of species including the threatened greater glider and critically endangered barred galaxias – a small native fish.

A blockade has been established to protect these forests.

Please call the environment minister and urge her to intervene to protect this forest.

Call and ask to leave a message: 03 9637 9504.

You can find further information here.

Citizen Science Survey Camp – Spring 2018

The Goongerah Environment Centre (GECO), based in far east Gippsland is hosting a citizen science survey over the Melbourne Cup long weekend in November (November 3 – 6, 2018).

“You will learn from the dedicated and passionate ecologists and activists at GECO whose citizen science campaign is saving forests from logging. We’ll be based in and around Goongerah, including surrounding high conservation value and old growth forests, and the iconic Kuark forest”.

Continue reading “Citizen Science Survey Camp – Spring 2018”

Climate change influencing tree death in times of drought

In Australia, we know that climate change driven fire regimes are impacting on plant species in mountain environments.

Research published earlier this year in the journal Nature Climate Change describes a series of ‘sudden and catastrophic ecosystem shifts’ that have occurred recently across Australia. These changes, caused by the combined stress of gradual climate change and extreme weather events, are overwhelming ecosystems’ natural resilience.

In the south east of the continent, in terms of massive fires (greater than 250,000 ha), Victoria experienced two such events in the 19th century and five in the 20th century. In less than two decades, we have already had three mega fires in the 21st century. This has led to fears that Alpine Ash could become extinct in many parts of the alps unless we intervene through more extensive wildfire suppression or artificial seeding. It appears that increased fire frequency is the key factor impacting on the likely survival of plant species like the alpine ash.

New research, covered in the Colorado-based High Country News, points to temperature rise as an issue for mountain species in sections of North America.

Continue reading “Climate change influencing tree death in times of drought”

Leadbeater’s Possum habitat being logged in the Blue Range

Critically important habitat for Victoria’s faunal emblem, the Leadbeater’s Possum is being logged right now in the Blue Range to the east of the Cathedral Ranges in the Central Highlands.

Despite being notified of the critical habitat that is likely being logged in breach of the law, the environment department are making excuses as to why logging should continue and are refusing to investigate.

Please call on the Victorian environment minister to protect threatened species habitat and cease logging in forest along Tom Burns Creek in the Rubicon Region.

Take action

You can email the environment minister here – to tell her we want critical Leadbeater’s Possum habitat protected, not logged. And we want to be able to trust that the environment department is making every effort to protect species and not making excuses about why they will not carry out their obligations.

For background information on the logging please check here.

IMAGE: from WOTCH

 

Plan launched for forest park in Strathbogie Ranges

There has been a long running campaign by local residents to see the Strathbogie Ranges in north east Victoria protected from logging.

Since European occupation, 74% (177,600 ha) of native forest in the Strathbogie Ranges has been cleared. Less than 2% of the Strathbogie Ranges is permanently protected in reserves. The 24,000 ha Strathbogie Forest is the largest block of public land in the Strathbogies, but only 870 ha (3.5%) has permanent protection.

With a state election on the horizon, locals are ramping up efforts to get the forests protected in a new reserve.

Continue reading “Plan launched for forest park in Strathbogie Ranges”

Stand up for the forests of Toolangi

Toolangi (to the east of Melbourne) is home to the tallest flowering tree on earth – the Mountain Ash. A wet forest home to unique and gorgeous wildlife including Leadbeater’s possum, marsupial gliders, owls, wombats and wallabies.

For seven years community and friends of Toolangi have fought long and hard to have our voices heard about the logging of Toolangi State Forests.

Join the day of action to protect the forests – 12th of August.

Continue reading “Stand up for the forests of Toolangi”

Emerald Link film launched

The idea of the Emerald Link – a park that would connect the coastline of far East Gippsland with the mountains in the Errinundra Plateau – has been around for a while now. This week a film on the vision was launched.

You can watch the film here >>https://www.emeraldlink.com.au/

You can get involved and active to make the Emerald Link a reality. Join us at this information night on August 15th in Melbourne. Info here https://www.facebook.com/events/1749030375132344/

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