As someone involved in forestry for nearly 20 years and then moved over to tourism I can tell you that tourism on its own is not the answer. It is incredibly seasonal and all operators feel the winter pinch substantially. Much of the labour is low paid, and casual following the seasonal trends e.g. waiters, hotel cleaners, tour guides. By the end of winter many of them have gone elsewhere looking for work and new ones need to be trained for the summer peaks. Secondly, much of the forest based tourism is accessed using forestry roads and facilities anyway and has existed in relative harmony with the timber industry for decades. Interestingly the tourism peaks of the early 2000's coincided with the peak timber industry activity in the State. Also, ironically, I can assure you that the Tourism Industry is massively subsidised. The basic role of Tourism Tasmania is to market the State, perhaps a justified role but nevertheless one that is subsidising the tourism industry - subsidies being (incorrectly) argued by the greens to be one of their cases against the timber industry. Wilderness AND woodchips I say. By the way, the head of the Tourism Industry Council of Tasmania is a strong timber industry supporter.
When you bring up that tourism only is not the answer when it comes to supporting the people that have been displaced by the closure and at the expense of other types of industries, the green groups argue that the businesses have to produce enough money in the peak tourist months to carry them over the other months of winter and some months in spring and autumn, The subject of employment in these months for Tasmanians is always bypassed and or change to another issue.
This was one of the green groups main argument when wanting to close the timber industry (Forestry Tasmania), in every public opinion piece in the local papers green supporters would point out the government money that was used with Forestry Tasmania, they would not mention the public roads that forestry made and maintained, or the expense of fighting fires including the equipment that was used or kept to fight fires, or the expense of undertaking the science of Tasmanian forestry that was undertaken in that year, all these and many more tasks that where undertaken by Forestry Tasmania that are and were a very expensive undertaken. The roads that the protestors use to access their protest sites were put there and maintained by Forestry Tasmania. Forestry Tasmania have not been maintaining the many roads though the many forests in Tasmania, the reason being that the Government expects that the works have to come out of existing budgets and or money made from selling the trees, how can you sell the trees when your main customer has been forced into liquidation from the tactics that the Tasmanian Greens have undertaken over many years.
This story is from Brett Chatwin a Tasmanian and keen fisherman, as you know you meet the most interesting people while fishing and Brett did some months ago, you will find it interesting and some of these newspapers that only seem to look at the green's news releases.This article makes an interesting read in light of TNC recent claims on the the tassie devils in the Tarkine.
"There is no question that it is a very controversial industry and there is no question that a small group of people is determined to try to deny the industry access to markets, and to capital, and are successful in doing so. In fact, it is my conclusion that it is almost inevitable that they will succeed in that".<<READ MORE HERE