IUCN World Conservation Congress
I spoke in the NSW Parliament last week about the International Union for Conservation of Nature World Conservation Congress, was then being conducted in the Republic of Korea. Australia is a signatory to the International Union for Conservation of Nature [ICUN]. Indeed, the World Parks Congress is to be held in Australia in 2014, which was part of the reason our Minister for the Environment, and Minister for Heritage was in attendance along with departmental officials.
For years now, but only when it suited their own selfish purposes, Green groups, who oppose almost everything, have used the International Union for Conservation of Nature standards and principles to block, delay or defer any number of initiatives.
So I hope they will have the good grace to concede that sustainable use and conservation can and do go hand in hand. It has been something that the Shooters and Fishers Party has talked about for years, but in those same years The Greens have decried the idea. They will now have to face facts because of motion 151, which has been passed by the International Union for Conservation of Nature. In case The Greens missed it, motion 151 relates to sustainable use of abundant biological resources. And once we have similar motions adopted here, there should never again be any "conservation" argument or threat against our kangaroo industry, for example.
(The Hon. Jeremy Buckingham interrupted the speech at this point: “They taste good,” he said.)
They do taste good. I acknowledged the interjection.
Motion 151 recognises that wild fauna and flora are vital to human survival and have significant cultural and biological value. Decisions on whether or not to use living natural resources should always be consistent with the conservation of biological diversity. It also recognises the importance that the international community has attached to achieving and supporting the sustainable use of renewable natural resources under various inter-governmental instruments and agreements.
The motion urges the adoption of supportive policies and laws to allow the sustainable use of a resource to proceed from collection or harvest through to final use, without unnecessary impediments. It also recognises that where use of wild species occurs, whether consumptive or non-consumptive, sustainability and an ecosystem-based approach are goals of sound resource management.
I look forward to the NSW Government moving quickly to adopt and draw up any necessary legislation to eliminate all barriers currently preventing the adoption of "sustainable use" in this State.
It is interesting to see who actually sponsored this motion to the conference. Not surprisingly, the Fur Institute of Canada put the motion up, but it was co-sponsored and/or endorsed by the following groups: the Inuit Circumpolar Council of Greenland, the Republic of Namibia's Ministry of Environment and Tourism, the Federation of Associations for Hunting and Conservation of the European Union, the European Bureau for Conservation and Development, the International Council for Game and Wildlife Conservation, the Swedish Hunters Association and the Nordic Hunters Cooperation. Hardly a group one would describe as rabid ratbags or redneck good ol' boys.
Sustainable utilisation is a primary principle of conservation. The sooner we in Australia adopt the concept, the better will be our overall success with conservation outcomes. As I said, we particularly need to have our kangaroo industry on a solid footing so that it can continue to grow with confidence and not be subject to the whims of such groups as People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals [PETA]—some people say that PETA stands for "people eating tasty animals"—and its fellow travellers every year or so.
Let us get sustainable use policies in place as soon as we can.
Robert Brown MLC
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