MAJOR ENVIRONMENT GROUPS REJECT INQUIRY REPORT INTO CHARITABLE STATUS
Media Statement, Places You Love Alliance
Key Australian environment groups today called on the Federal Environment Minister, Mr Greg Hunt, to reject recommendations of a report of an inquiry into the charitable status of environment groups.
The CEOs of WWF, The Australian Conservation Society, The Wilderness Society, Greenpeace Australia Pacific, Friends of the Earth and the Nature Conservation Council of NSW issued the following statement on behalf of the Places You Love alliance:
Report here, including a dissenting report by Labor members.
The Report of the Inquiry into the Register of Environmental Organisations correctly recognises the enormous contribution environment groups have played in safeguarding Australia’s precious yet fragile environment, protecting icons from the Great Barrier Reef to the Franklin River.
However, the report contains a number of deeply flawed and dangerous recommendations, including an arbitrary requirement to spend a quarter of donor funds on ‘environmental remediation’ and a draconian attempt to clamp down on the type of work organisations conduct.
This flawed Inquiry, initiated by the Abbott Government and driven by a small handful of conservative MPs with the support of the mining industry, failed to uncover any evidence to justify removing the charitable status of any environment group.
We welcome the dissenting statements made by Liberal MP and committee member Jason Wood, raising significant concerns about the two most dangerous recommendations. (*See excerpts below).
We have identified two highly flawed and dangerous recommendations in the report.
The recommendation requiring environment groups spend at least 25 per cent of their supporters’ hard-earned money on ‘environmental remediation’ is ludicrous, imposing a huge bureaucratic burden on both the government and organisations, particularly small groups working with local communities. In Canada, the same policy experiment failed dismally, creating enormous red tape with no resulting public benefit.… Read more >>