It’s the electoral season for green-money showers in Australia – the Coral Community got one billion dollars of green bribes from PM Morrison (this after $141M from ex-PM Turnbull just over 3 years ago). Koalas got $50M from Morrison whilst the Queensland Government bought a huge grazing property for yet another national park. And of course the Green Broadcasting Commission got an extra $3.3Billion over 3 years to promote their green agenda.
This flood of green graft aims to bribe green voters by molly-coddling trees and corals, both of which are among Australia’s long-term survivors. However, today’s greatest environmental destruction is being inflicted on Australia’s once-magnificent grasslands by those same urban greens.
When Europeans first saw Australia, much of the country was covered by grasslands and open forests. In 1770, that great botanist Sir Joseph Banks reported “very few tree species, but every place was covered with vast quantities of grass”. Many other explorers and settlers made similar observations.
Australia’s vast grasslands supported marsupials, emus, bustards, finches and parrots. They had been maintained for centuries by aboriginals who lit fires anywhere for many reasons. This regime of many small patchwork fires produced and maintained the grasslands.
Early settlers recognised the value of cool-season burning to fire-proof their properties and rejuvenate the valuable native grasses. Unfortunately, in recent decades, the use of fire has been suppressed by greens and bureaucrats, so that today’s fires are irregular, unplanned, fierce and usually lit at the worst time of the year by lightning or arsonists.
Weeds and trees soon invade grasslands damaged by irregular fierce fires.
The destruction of Australia’s ancestral grasslands has received a massive boost in recent years by green extremists aiming to remove human activities from rural Australia by promoting more national parks, reservations, crown land, heritage areas and “Wild Rivers”. Their bans on logging, hunting, grazing and regrowth clearing have turned many national parks into weed and pest havens.
The prevention of frequent burning (the key tool used by generations of aborigines and early settlers to maintain Australia’s grassy landscape) and the spread of carbon-credit forestry are accelerating the destruction of our prairie lands.
Once grasslands are invaded by woody scrubs, these quickly give protection to noxious weeds such as lantana, groundsel, prickly pear and box-thorn, and vermin such as rabbits, foxes, wild dogs, cats, deer and pigs.
Grasslands have another insidious green enemy – the spread of suffocating blankets of subsidised solar panels that steal the sunshine that all plants rely on.
The world’s amazing grasses and their edible seeds feed most of the animal kingdom, directly or indirectly. The deliberate sacrifice of grasslands to solar panels and woody weeds is another suicidal green policy.
For those who would like read some fascinating comments by early explorers and settlers see:
The Battle for our Grasslands:
Grasses, Trees, Climate and Food:
Solar Energy and the Threat to Food Security:
Viv Forbes has tertiary qualification in geology, chemistry, physics, maths, financial analysis and soil science. He and his wife have had decades of experience in managing pastures and bushfires in Queensland and Northern Territory.