Category Archives: Events
Click HERE to sign the cyber action.
Send a message to the corporate customers of Ta Ann, the Malaysian timber company who are driving the logging of high conservation value forests in Tasmania – the world wants forest protection.
I’ve been at the top of this tree for over 300 days now. I think it’s time for the world to know I’m here. The more people who find out and add their voice to the call for forest proteciton… the sooner we can save Tasmania’s forests and I can get down!
Tasmania’s forest negotiations have collapsed! Public pressure is now more urgent than ever!
The Observer Tree really needs your help to keep this project going and to continue the campaign to expose the truth behind Ta Ann’s forest destruction.
Any contributions however big or small will be very gratefully appreciated.
Please direct deposit donations into the Observer Tree bank account:
Account name: Still Wild Still Threatened
Acc Number: 144673571
Its 3 am and I can’t sleep. I’ve been laying away for awhile writing blogs in my head. I didn’t want to get out of my warm sleeping bag to get the computer. I thought maybe I’d remember what I wanted to say by the time the morning came. But really that’s just an excuse to stay warm. I knew it would be like those times I wake up from a dream in the middle of the night sure that I will remember it the next day. It’s so clear and vivid in my mind that it seems impossible to forget it. Then sure enough the next day it is nothing but a fuzzy blur that seems to disappear like smoke every time you try to grasp a hold of it. Well, I didn’t want that to happen to my blog.. so I forced myself up into the cold and now I’m sitting wrapped in my sleeping bag, my hands poking awkwardly out the gap, my fingers stinging a little with every tap of the keys, red and numb from the cold. Outside the wind is howling through the trees. Through the clear tarp above me the silhouettes of leaves are dancing a wild and frantic dance. The sway of the platform has become so natural that it is comforting to feel the tree moving gently with the wind. Though it is jolted violently out of rhythm every now and again by a sudden gust.
Why am I awake at 3 am? Well, it’s not really because I have something so important to tell you that it just couldn’t wait till the morning. So I’m sorry if you are waiting for the revealing of some spectacular mid night epiphany. In reality I just went to bed really early. I had planned to write you a blog last night, but I just wanted a little warmth in my cosy sleeping bag… and then it was just so nice and warm that I decided to stay.
Yesterday I woke up in the morning and it looked like it would be a lovely day. The sun was shining, the weather was mild, a slight breeze but nothing to worry about. I got a call from Bob Brown. He was on the midlands highway and was thinking of me up in the tree in such windy weather. Hmmm… didn’t seem that windy to me, but it gave me the feeling it might be coming.
The other day a gorgeous little pardalote came and sat on the branch right next to me. I really wanted to get my camera so I could film it and show you. But I thought if I move I will frighten it away. So I decided to just stay and appreciate the moment. And I thought you would forgive me for supplying no images, just a description of how lovely it was! Well, I tell you this now because as I was sitting there thinking about the looming possibility of gale force winds, watching dark clouds appear over the mountains, a pair of rosellas flew over to the tree nearby. I wasn’t going to miss this opportunity. I am always meaning to film Rosellas, but so often they seem to stay just below the canopy unless they are flying by quickly. They were so cute sitting there on the branches unfazed as they tree swayed in the wind. Take a look:
I was feeling super chirpy, the sun was still out, it was getting pretty windy but was still relatively mild, I had some cute Rosella footage for my blog… it was going to be a good day. Time for a spring clean, I thought. And I started to sort out all my boxes and bags of things. I have gathered a lot up here over the past four months. And some of the things people have sent up are not one hundred percent essential. You know those days when you decide to tidy the house, and then there comes a point where you have made it a lot messier…. the contents of the cupboards sprawled across the floor and you start to doubt whether it was a good idea? Well, that is what it was like, I had things laid out all over my swag. In fact it seemed a miracle that ALL of that stuff had actually fit into those bags and boxes that sat neatly at the end of the platform. And it was at this moment that it happened. The weather changed so quickly I hardly had time to react. The wind ripped through the valley with such violent force that I had to hold onto my ropes to keep steady. My tarp, getting a bit weathered now from so many days like this, submitted in one finally act of defeat as the eye lets ripped from their seams. My most beloved possession… my bio-snaky sprout garden was over the edge before I even realised it, only it’s lid remained teetering on the edge of the platform. I was grabbing wildly at things trying to keep them from going overboard, while the tarp convulsed madly and the wind spat fat drops of rain onto my swag.
What a relief when I finally sat down, cosy and dry surrounded by a make shift tarp and woolen blanket combo holding out the cold wind. My clothes were dripping wet so I decided it was time for a dry jumper. I did my usual spider-check of the clothing before putting it on. But I didn’t see the spider fall quietly out onto my shirt. It was when I had the jumper half suspended over my head, my arms sticking half out the sleeves that I saw him crawling up my shirt. Now, I am starting to get used to these little buddies. You kind of have to up here. But that being said, I am still not quiet over my fear of tem. So you can imagine the chaos that ensued. I panicked and tried to flick him away. He disappeared… where? Down in my harness? My jumper had somehow been liberated and tossed aside and I’m frantically checking the crevices of my harness. Then I see him. Or at least I think it is him, though I can’t be sure since there are a LOT of spiders here and they all look the same. He is curled up on the platform. He looks dead. Oh dear, for all my fear of spiders I still care about them and I feel awful that I may have accidentally flicked this spider to his death.
So, there I was feeling a bit miserable. I’d lost my biosnacky, inadvertently murdered an innocent spider and I was now shivering with cold (I was feeling a bit scared of putting my jumper back on, even though I’m pretty sure it was now clear of all spiders). And then it started to snow. Oh snow, my favourite thing! Well, I didn’t feel as enthusiastic about the snow as I did the last two times. And there was no soft gentle magic snow, just the slushy kind that plopped down with the rain. I thought about the time I’d been telling someone about the amazing experiences of it snowing at Camp Florentine, but instead of joy they expressed concern. I didn’t understand…. Don’t you like the snow? Well, yes. They said. But it’s nice to watch through the window from the comfort of your house! I didn’t understand this at the time. I thought that was crazy. Why wouldn’t you want to run outside and play in it? Well, I still want to run outside and play in the snow and (I hope) I always will. But sitting watching in plop plop plop onto my tarp, while the cold wind made its way through every available crack and gap in the tarp, I think I can sort of understand where they are coming from. I think I might just crawl back into my sleeping bag right now… my fingers are getting a bit icy typing on this keyboard!
Well, now it’s evening again. It was a beautiful day which started with an amazing sunrise. The snow-covered peaks of Mount Field glowing in a hazy golden halo as the sunlight sprawled into the mist. I sat enjoying the view, with my camera and binoculars by my side, waiting for my little pardelote friend to come back! It was perfect weather for birds to be out and about. They love the early morning sun. I could hear them in the distance. But you know how these things go; they’ll only come over to my tree the moment I give up and put the camera away!
I have some exciting news to tell you before I go though. I have a special visitor coming to visit tomorrow. From Warren Macdonald. Now, I wont tell you too much about him…. I don’t want to spoil the blog for you! But just giving a heads up to all the Hobart folk – Warren will be doing a talk on Tuesday night at The Lark distillery. Here is a little blurb about it:
Today marks the beginning of an international week of action called “Occupy the Trees.”
The week long action has been initiated by conservationists from the Cascadia region in the US, in order to “draw attention to the entities who exploit and destroy the planet for the sake of profit.” The call to action includes 3 main points which are:
- Immediate attention and reversal to Global Climate Change which threatens all life on Earth.
- Disruption of the Earth-destroying profit machines led by the richest1% of the world and their government lackies.
- Ending all Commercial Extraction from Public Lands in all nations of the Earth.
You can find out more at occupythetrees.org
Tasmanian forest groups Still Wild Still Threatened, Huon Valley Environment Centre and Code Green are getting on board with a week of events to draw attention to the urgent need to end the destruction of the earth. Some events include:
Tuesday April 24 there will be a Kids Afternoon at the Huon Valley Environment Centre 4-6pm. Sharing food, tree craft fun, tree planting and storytelling.
Thursday 25 April Action for the rights of the animals – Defend the Devil. Stay tuned for more info.
I am super excited about being a part of Occupy the Trees. It definitely fits in well with what I am doing! And so as part of the international week of action The Observer Tree is having a virtual Open Day all week… anyone who is keen to chat to me about what I am doing up here can organise a time to Skype with me. You could even get together with a group of friends or colleagues, or put on a little community forum and I would love to talk to you live from the tree tops. Just email me: firstname.lastname@example.org
And to start the week off, here is a new short film about what I’m doing in the tree tops! This film was made by Joel Philp and is a great introduction to The Observer Tree. Check it out and spread it around…
Hope you’re all getting excited about next week’s international action! And busy with painting your signs and banners!
If you are in the following towns there is an action happening near you! (For details of when and where please email email@example.com)
Hobart, Derwent Valley, Launceston, Deloraine.
Brisbane, Lismore, Sunshine coast (QLD), Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide, Canberra, Perth, Blue Mountains, Bellingen, Alice Springs, Newcastle, Bell Bay, Roma, Mount Tambourine, East Gippsland.
International: Contact us for details.
If your town isn’t listed above please let me know so I can add you to the list!
If you haven’t got anything planned yet, never fear, it can be as easy as you want it to be! A simple hand-written sign held up for a photo is fine.
It’s been 8 weeks today since I set foot on the ground. This campaign is gaining momentum world wide. Now is your chance to join me in calling for the protection of Tasmania’s forests.
Please add your voice to this action. Every extra one counts!!
1. Don’t forget to confirm your action with us before hand or it will miss out on being included in the media release.
2. You’ll need to your photo through before midday Feb 15th (Australian EST). If you are unsure what time this is for you locally, we can let you know.
Please take a few minutes to help us protect Tasmania’s forests. It’s easy. Just click here and fill in your details to send an automatic email to the Japanese companies who are currently purchasing wood from Ta Ann Tasmania.
This action was launched today and with the help of our friends at Markets for Change, The Last Stand and the Huon Valley Environment Center, and with your help too, it looks like it’ll be a big one! Lets send the message far and wide.
Check out www.taann.com.au for more info.
In addition an action took place this morning in a logging coupe in the Picton Valley in southern Tasmania. With banner messages in both English and Japanese, the action highlighted the ongoing destruction caused by Ta Ann. The action called on those companies involved (including Sekisui House, Eidai, Daiwa House and Panasonic) to stop selling the products from this forest destruction.
To all the locals of the Derwent Valley…. Come along to this exciting event for the chance to ask me questions and find out a bit more about what I’m up to. Please help spread the word!
COME AND ASK QUESTIONS OF MIRANDA
Have you heard that a young woman called Miranda Gibson has been sitting 60m up in a tree in our Valley for over 6 weeks!! WHY??
Miranda is sitting in a forest near Mt Mueller west of Maydena. This forest was promised immediate protection by the Gillard Government last August, but is now about to be logged.
Come and ask Miranda questions about what she is doing, via computer link-up from the Derwent Valley Community House, The Avenue, New Norfolk – Wednesday 1st Feb at 7-8.30pm.
For more details please call Inger 6261 3042
Join us on Tuesday 14th or Wednesday 15th February 2012 to stand up for our forests across the world, support Miranda Gibson’s inspiring ObserverTree action and get logging out of our native forests forever.
Sometimes the actions of one person can inspire thousands of others.
Australia’s world-class forests are still being ripped apart by industrial logging operations every single day. The destruction of our native forests is placing our threatened species, clean air and water, and climate in serious danger.
As you read this, Tasmanian forest activist Miranda Gibson has been living on a platform in the ObserverTree 60m high in the tall trees of Tasmania’s western wilderness for nearly 5 weeks. Miranda has vowed to remain where she is until Tasmania’s forests receive formal protection.
Malaysian timber giant Ta Ann has played a key role in ensuring that Tasmania’s forests are not protected. Despite labelling some of its products as ‘eco ply’, Ta Ann continues to receive timber from old growth forests in Tasmania, rejecting timber from plantations. The timber is exported and sold in Japan, China and Europe. To read more about Ta Ann and its forest-destroying activities, check out this great report by the Huon Valley Environment Centre.
The campaign had a major success last month with one of Ta Ann’s customers UK company International Plywood cancelling its wood contract after hearing about Tasmanian forest destruction. Now it’s time to call on Ta Ann’s major international customers, based in Japan, to follow suit and stop buying wood from our precious native forests. The recent success shows that change is possible. These companies hold the key to forest protection in Tasmania.
We need your help to send a clear message to Ta Ann and its customers that Australia and the global community will not accept native forest destruction!
International support has played a key role in our campaign so far. When Tasmanian forest destruction is being exported all over the world, it’s really important to have a worldwide response.
This is a growing campaign and actions have happened from coast to coast in Australia. We need your help to send a clear message to Ta Ann and its customers that the global community will not accept native forest destruction!
Take a stand for our spectacular forests and join us right across Australia on Tuesday 14th – Wednesday 15th February 2012 to take part in a massive 24 hours of action that is happening around the world.*
It’s easy to take part in this global 24 hours of action! There are two things you can do:
1. (The simple option)
All you need to do is gather a few friends, paint a banner that says ‘Tasmania’s forests still falling’, photograph yourselves with it and email us the photo. We also have posters and fliers we can send you with a bit more information about the campaign and things people can do to help.
2. (If you can do something a bit more technical)
Get hold of a good projector and project some of Miranda’s footage of the forest (which we can send you) onto a wall in a prominent location – the bigger the image the better! If logging has started we will send you footage of logging, if not we will have other images of the forest and the species that live in it. We are really excited about this aspect of the action as we think it will communicate the forest destruction to passers-by in a very powerful way.
We’re really keen to raise as much awareness as possible about this huge action, so if you could help us with spreading the word, that would be ace!
Please contact us right away on firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to take part in the action, put posters up in your area, or help us with promotion, and we will send you more action details via our super sonic electro carrier pigeon.
For the forests,
* Because of differences in time zones, the action will be held over 14 & 15 February (Weds 15th Feb in Australia). Contact us at email@example.com for more info.