News State Tasmania Forest wars to return to Tasmania: Greens
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Forest wars to return to Tasmania: Greens

AAP
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Tasmanian Greens leader Nick McKim is warning the incoming Liberal premier Will Hodgman not to take the state “back to war” by tearing up the forestry peace deal between the timber industry and environmentalists.

Mr Hodgman had pledged to abandon the peace deal, and signatories to it are reportedly meeting in Hobart on Monday to discuss its future.

“He knows what the implications of his decisions are,” Mr McKim told reporters in Hobart on Monday.

“If there is a return to the dark days of conflict division, it will be one person’s responsibility and one person’s only, and that will be Will Hodgman.”

The deal, signed in November 2012, took almost three years to negotiate.

What people can expect from the Greens is that we will stand up strongly in defence of the forests.

Conservationists and the timber industry in Tasmania have been in conflict over logging for 30 years.

Mr McKim would not be drawn on whether the Greens would join other environmental groups in protest action if the agreement was torn up.

But he said the Greens would always defend the state’s “wild places”.

“What people can expect from the Greens is that we will stand up strongly in defence of the forests,” he said.

The Liberals’ forestry spokesman Peter Gutwein is due to address media on Monday afternoon.

Mr McKim’s comments come after the Liberals stormed to victory in Saturday’s state election, grabbing 52 per cent of the primary vote, a swing of 12 per cent, to win at least 14 of the lower house’s 25 seats.

With more than 80 per cent of the vote counted, the ALP has secured six lower house seats, the Greens probably three, while two are in doubt.

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