Koalas killed to make paper in Japan and China.

  • by: Judi Storer
  • target: Hon, Joel Fitzgibbon MP (Federal Minister for the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry); Hon. Sid Sidebottom (Federal Pariamentary Secretary for the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry); Senator Richard Colbeck (Federal Shadow P

Koala's are one of Australia's most loved native animals, yet it has been declared endangered in two States of Australia. With koala habitat shrinking, thousands of koalas have made their homes in vast blue gum plantations owned by American company, Australian Blue Gum Plantations.  This company, along with half Japanese owned company, South West Fibre, plans to export 1.2 million tonnes of blue gum logs and woodchips per year to Japan and China for paper production.  The Chinese and Japanese public are great fans of our iconic koala and are unaware of the hidden cost of this paper production.

Whistle blowers, from the company admitted that koalas are killed on a daily basis, at a rate of a couple per hour in some instances, as the trees they inhabit are felled, or they are knocked out of trees by other falling trees.  Whilst Australian Blue Gum Plantations claims it has seen no incidents of koala deaths or injuries, wildlife rescue workers say this is rubbish and that the company is in denial.  They describe injuries such as broken limbs, impact wounds, broken backs, severed arms and little joeys trying to survive after their mother has been killed – one that had two broken arms itself.  Despite the evidence of dead koalas littering the ground below these blue gums, very rarely have workers called to get help for injured animals.  This foreign owned company cares little for our wild life compared to the profits that are at stake.

The scale of injury and death of koalas is a huge issue.  On the odd occasions that a wildlife rescue worker in Mount Gambier has been contacted, 21 koalas died from logging, 14 of which she had to personally euthanize.  In another plantation she found 28 injured or dead koalas.  In Warrnambool, another worker rescued 24 injured or dead koalas.  However, the majority of injured koalas just stay out in the plantations with no treatment for their injuries.  Many will starve to death or die slow agonising deaths from their injuries and any joeys will also suffer starvation or death from injury.

A representative from the Victorian Department of Environment and Primary Industries, when asked about the oversight of this company, said that this Department provides the overarching guidelines regarding appropriate management of koala’s and other native animals.   However, he admitted that they haven’t previously run any checks on this or any other companies, as they only look into information that has been provided to them by the logging companies, and they never do random checks to ensure the guidelines are being followed.  Once again, this logging company has been basically left to self-regulation and we all know from past experience, how appallingly inadequate self-regulation has been, in various industries.

Dear Honorable Member of Parliament/ Senator,





Australia's iconic koala's are being killed and maimed by logging carried out to supply wood chips to paper makers in China and Japan. This appalling situation needs to be looked into and addressed.





With koala habitat shrinking, thousands of koalas have made their homes in vast blue gum plantations owned by American company, Australian Blue Gum Plantations.  This company, along with half Japanese owned company, South West Fibre, plans to export 1.2 tonnes of blue gum logs and woodchips per year to Japan and China for paper production.  The Chinese and Japanese public are great fans of our iconic koala and are unaware of the hidden cost of this paper production.





Whistle blowers, from the company, fearing the loss of their jobs should their identity be disclosed, admitted that koalas are killed on a daily basis, at a rate of a couple per hour in some instances, as the trees they inhabit are felled, or they are knocked out of trees by other falling trees.  Whilst Australian Blue Gum Plantations claims it has seen no incidents of koala deaths or injuries, wildlife rescue workers say this is rubbish and that the company is in denial.  They describe injuries such as broken limbs, impact wounds, broken backs, severed arms and little joeys trying to survive after their mother has been killed – one that had two broken arms itself.  Despite the evidence of dead koalas littering the ground below these blue gums, very rarely have workers called to get help for injured animals.  This foreign owned company cares little for our wild life compared to the profits that are at stake.





The scale of injury and death of koalas is a huge issue.  On the odd occasions that a wildlife rescue worker in Mount Gambier has been contacted, 21 koalas died from logging, 14 of which she had to personally euthanize.  In another plantation she found 28 injured or dead koalas.  In Warrnambool, another worker rescued 24 injured or dead koalas.  However, the majority of injured koalas just stay out in the plantations with no treatment for their injuries.  Many will starve to death or die slow agonising deaths from their injuries and any joeys will also suffer starvation or death from injury.





A representative from the Victorian Department of Environment and Primary Industries, when asked about the oversight of this company said that this Department provides the overarching guidelines regarding appropriate management of koala’s and other animals.   However, he admitted that they haven’t previously run any checks on this or any other companies, as they only look into information that has been provided to them by the logging companies, and they never do random checks to ensure the guidelines are being followed.  Once again, this logging company has been basically left to self-regulation and we all know from past experience, how appallingly inadequate self-regulation has been, in various industries.





The disrespect shown to our koalas by international logging and wood chip industries needs to be stopped. These companies must be made to adhere to appropriate standards of care for our native wildlife. With the koala now listed as endangered in the eastern states of Australia, our Government departments and politicians need to stand up for our beautiful iconic koala against these multi national killers - before our koalas disappear forever!.













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