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Victorian Government’s end to native forest logging is a win for the environment and for health

Doctors for the Environment Australia (DEA) welcomes the Victorian Government’s decision to end native forest logging by January next year- six years ahead of schedule.

Victorian DEA Chair Dr Mike Forrester says, “This  move will have significant benefits for the state’s iconic mountain ash forests and wildlife  and, ultimately, for human health.

“Forests  provide critical carbon storage and play a key role in climate change mitigation, ensure water quality and security, clean our air and provide habitats supporting biodiversity which is key for minimising further diseases. Forests also provide green spaces for recreation, relaxation and mental and physical wellbeing.

“We acknowledge that fast-tracking the phase-out of native timber will have an impact on workers, and  commend the Victorian Government’s transition package to ensure they and their families are supported with retraining and redeployment.”

 DEA has strongly advocated for the protection of forests and an end to native forest logging to protect health, and recently teamed up with WWF-Australia to launch a major new report on the growing evidence connecting trees and forests to human physical and mental health.  Read the report Trees:The forgotten heroes of our health.

The need to preserve forests has also been called for by internationally recognised bodies such as the UN’s IPCC and the UN’s Environment Program.

“Forests are not only extraordinary, but they’re also essential to human health”, says Dr Forrester. “DEA hopes other jurisdictions across Australia will follow suit and preserve what is left for the health of current and future generations.”

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