By Rueben Hale, The Countryman, 15 June 2017, p8.
Rangelands reform is back on the State Government agenda after WA Lands Minister Rita Saffioti committed to restarting the process.
Ms Saffioti said last week she intended to consult with industry and the community over the next six to 12 months before starting renewed negotiations on the issue.Read more
Reporter Claire Nichols from ABC Radio National compiled this report on diversification in the rangelands. She attended the Outback Carbon Farming Conference to speak to pastoralist Jason Hastie about his views on the need for diversification.
Click to hear the full story, which also includes interviews with WA Minister for Lands Terry Redman, David Mackenzie from Pew Charitable Trusts, and the Pastoralist and Graziers Association WA President Tony Seabrook.Read more
ABC Country Hour's Richard Hudson attended the Outback Carbon Farming Conference and spoke to a number of speakers and delegates to hear their views on the future of carbon farming in WA's Outback.
Click through to hear interviews with Peter Castellas (CEO, Carbon Market Institute), Scott Girdler (Special Counsel, Clayton Utz), Sandra Eckert (General Counsel, Department of Lands), Tom Jackson (Pastoralist, Austin Downs Station) and John Dunne (Pastoralist, Remlap Station). The coverage runs for the first 22 minutes of the program.Read more
Pastoralist Jason Hastie spoke to ABC Country Hour's Belinda Varischetti today about the need to place a value on Outback lands that are in good condition - thereby encouraging land managers to invest time, effort and resources into ensuring a healthy landscape.
Jason is optimistic that the WA Government's changes to rangelands laws will open up exciting environmental and economic opportunities in WA's Outback - which covers 90% of the state.
He met with the Lands Minister Terry Redman, who has responsibility for WA's Outback, to look beyond the new legislation and explore policies that would put a value on healthy Outback lands. Jason argues that this would help broaden the focus of pastoralists from livestock production to include a concern for land that's in good condition, and that can be sustained for generations to come.
Jason is from Pingandy Station south of Paraburdoo, and you can hear his interview on ABC Country Hour here - fast forward to 25:20 to catch the start of his story.Read more
Shenton Park scientist Harley Lacy met with Nedlands MLA Bill Marmion last month to discuss historic changes proposed for 90 per cent of West Australian outback.
The former pastoralist, who left Polelle Station near Meekatharra in 1989, said he had firsthand experience of the damage wrought by tough economic times and past grazing practices.
“For decades, WA’s laws have meant that anyone on a pastoral lease had to run stock, whether it suited them or not," Mr Lacy said.
“The Barnett government is now looking at changing these laws to allow people to diversify into new enterprises more appropriate to a modern economy.”Read more
North Kimberley cattle station manager Susan Bradley, who oversees Theda and Doongan stations, spoke to ABC Country Hour today about her support for the government's proposed new legislation that will shape the future of the Western Australian Outback.
Ms Bradley said that many pastoralists have been seeking Outback reform for a long time. She criticised those who are seeking to stand in the way of reforms, characterising them as "dinosaurs of industry".
"I don't think that the dinosaurs of the industry should be holding back these people who really want to care for the land," Ms Bradley said.
Ms Bradley is in favour of diversification into more sustainable enterprises in the Outback. The stations she manages are extremely remote, meaning that getting livestock to market is challenging. "We are interested in conservation, in the biodiversity, environment, flora and fauna, and we are carbon trading,” Ms Bradley said.Read more
We're excited to announce a new initiative for WA's Outback - the Rangelands Gazette.
The Rangelands Gazette is a four-page newsletter published specifically for pastoral leaseholders in WA, in time for the State Government's release of the draft Rangelands Reform Bill this week.
Leaseholders will be among those who are affected by the government's proposed changes. There is a growing consensus among a variety of Outback stakeholders - pastoralists, tourism operators, conservationists and others - that reform presents opportunities, but that more needs to be done if these opportunities are to be realised.
The Rangelands Gazette explains the rangelands reform process, examines the opportunities created by reform and the elements that are missing from the government's program, and includes contributions from pastoralists and the legal sector.
You can read the Rangelands Gazette here [PDF 2.2MB].Read more
The rangelands conference held by the Department of Lands yesterday attracted around 230 people who were keen to hear more about Minister for Lands Terry Redman's vision for Outback reform.
The creation of a rangelands lease (which would be a new, non-compulsory form of lease) is a step in the right direction, but the detail is missing for the smaller family-run pastoral businesses, as pointed out by a pastoralist from Mt Magnet in this story from ABC News.Read more
CONSERVATION campaigner Brian Moyle has presented Alfred Cove MP Dean Nalder with the signatures of more than 10,000 West Australian calling for increased support for the Outback.
The petition, contained in a photo book highlighting the beauty of the state’s vast uninhabited landscapes, stresses the dangers posed to the Outback by uncontrolled fire, noxious weeds and feral animals.Read more
The WA government has taken the first official step in Outback law reform! On Friday, the issue made the headlines of The West Australian Business pages. Read the full story here.Read more