Media Release (2) 10-08-10



SOURCE: Property Rights Australia
MEDIA RELEASE – 10 August 2010


Many Australian landholders have had their political and human rights denied them by State Governments throughout Australia, using Vegetation Control Legislation as a tool to lock up millions of hectares of privately held property, causing considerable strain on farmers by devaluing their land.

In many cases, the vegetation control legislation has the opposite effect of what it is intended to achieve.  Placing severe limits on clearing regrowth can result in loss of grass and significant soil erosion.  The legislation is so restrictive that even clearing one tree can land an unwary farmer with a clearing offence.

Peter Spencer, ACT farmer, launched a hunger strike to draw attention to the plight of many farmers who have had their basic property and human rights abused by both State and Federal governments.

Joanne Nova has covered Peter Spencer’s plight:

“Imagine a third world nation was mired in corruption so deeply that the ruling class were able to stealthily steal the rights to vast acreage of private property from landowners without paying any compensation.

Imagine that one of the victims of this injustice had approached every court of the land and had not even had his case heard, even after more than 200 attempts. In desperation, and with no other avenue available, having officially “lost the farm”, he starts a hunger strike, which has now gone for 28 52 days unbroken, threatening to starve to death if he has to.

Welcome to Australia — right on track for Third World Status.

Pressure put to bear on the Government by thousands of farmers and their supporters resulted in a Senate Enquiry on Native Vegetation Laws, Greenhouse Gas Abatement and Climate Change Measures.

This Enquiry drew hundreds of submissions from affected farmers and environmentalists.  From the conclusions of the enquiry: “It is unreasonable that the burden of broad environmental objectives is borne by a small number of Australians. Where the current native vegetation laws have resulted in reduction of property value for landholders, this is unjust and it is inappropriate that this burden is borne by individual landholders.”




Property Rights Australia does not want to see this recent Senate Enquiry gather dust, considering the dire impact should the recommendations be ignored.

We call on each of the major political parties to tell the people of Australia how they intend to protect the basic human and property rights of Australia’s farmers from intrusive vegetation control legislation, political interference and cases of maladministration which have been exposed as a part of this Senate Enquiry.

The abuse of our farmers continues to this day.  One farmer in Western Australia has been jailed for clearing his private property which had previously been cleared.  A feedlot in WA has been shut down by onerous ‘green inspired’ license conditions.

One NSW farmer has recounted how they were driven from their land on condition of anonymity, so threatened are they and many others by payback delivered by maladministration and complete abuse of political and legislative process.

“It’s time for Australians to know where the major political parties stand on the protection of basic human rights for our farmers.


Ron Bahnisch,
Property Rights Australia,








For further information contact: 

     Ron Bahnisch, “Bower Park,” 290 Fairybower Road, Gracemere, QLD 4702

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PRA is a non-profit organisation of primary producers and business people from rural

areas defending the rights of property owners