Thanks to you our alps are again cattle free
Tony Burke's decision a win for good sense and smart science
When you visit Victoria's beautiful Alpine National Park you expect to come across any number of natural wonders. What you wouldn't dream of coming across are herds of cattle.
Federal environment minister Tony Burke's decision this week to shut the gate on the flawed 'scientific' cattle grazing trial in Victoria's Alpine National Park is a win for good sense, smart science and national leadership.
The minister found the proposal by the Victorian Government was clearly unacceptable under national environmental law and 'will not proceed'.
This is a great win for you and members and supporters of the VNPA who led the campaign against the trial. Your organisation, your win.
Please send Mr Burke a heartfelt thank you message for his far-sighted decision! We need to seize every opportunity we get to say thank you to far-sightedness and leadership!
Where to from here?
With the cattle now blocked from the alps, the Victorian Government is looking at the possibility of reversing the decision by herding the issue up to the High Court.
Our advice suggests a legal challenge would likely fail, and would be an exorbitant waste of Victorian taxpayers' money.
This case makes it clear that when state governments walk away from their key responsibilities on the environment we need national leadership to ensure checks and balances are in place.
Whether the Victorian Government takes the Federal Government's decision to the High Court or not, it's still a significant milestone - for you, for VNPA, for all Victorians.
In the short time since Mr Burke announced his decision, we breathed a sigh of relief and took a deep breath as we now launch ourselves into the next stage of our crucial campaign.
In the next few months a proposal will be put forward to ensure there is a permanent law requiring all states to refer damaging activities in national parks - such as cattle grazing, mining and land clearing - to the Federal Government for assessment.
This is would be a significant step towards protecting the integrity of our magnificent national parks and reserves network.
Please help us continue to expose the flaws in the Victorian Government's science and to strengthen national environmental laws to improve better management of our national parks by making a donation today.
PS You can read my opinion piece 'National parks are national in name only' on the ABC website.
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