How Andrew McLachlan voted compared to someone who believes that the federal government should protect threatened forest and bushland habitats from logging.

Division Andrew McLachlan Supporters vote Division outcome

26th Aug 2020, 4:21 PM – Senate Motions - Victoria: Forestry - Protect old-growth and high conservation value forests

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The majority voted against a motion introduced by WA Senator Rachel Siewert (Labor), which means it failed.

Motion text

That the Senate—

(a) notes that:

(i) the Federal Court of Australia has made formal declarations of unlawful logging by VicForests in 66 forest areas under Victoria's Regional Forest Agreement,

(ii) the Bob Brown Foundation has launched a separate legal action, arguing that logging under the Tasmanian Regional Forest Agreement is unsustainable and illegal, and

(iii) handing environmental approvals to the states will make the rest of our environment subject to the same systemic failure as our forests have been suffering under the Regional Forests Agreements; and

(b) calls on the Government to:

(i) abandon the failed, flawed Regional Forest Agreements,

(ii) immediately protect all old-growth and high conservation value forests,

(iii) abandon attempts to rush through changes to environmental laws that make it easier for big miners and developers to damage our environment and wildlife, and

(iv) create an independent environmental watchdog with teeth.

No Yes Not passed by a large majority

15th Jun 2020, 4:32 PM – Senate Motions - Environmental Conservation: New South Wales - Convert to national park

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The majority voted against a motion introduced by NSW Senator Mehreen Faruqi (Labor), which means it failed.

Motion text

That the Senate—

(a) notes:

(i) that the New South Wales (NSW) government has included the former IBM site at 55 Coonara Avenue West Pennant Hills in its planning acceleration program, despite the proposal for rezoning from Business to Residential and Environmental use being opposed by the Hills Shire Council and Hornsby Shire Council,

(ii) that the proposal for high-density residential development on the site requires the removal of 2,000 trees, including Blue Gum High Forest and Sydney Turpentine-Ironbark Forest in the Sydney Basin Bioregion, both of which are listed as a critically endangered ecological communities under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (Cth),

(iii) the sustained opposition of local residents, civic associations, environmentalists and elected councillors to the development,

(iv) that the NSW Natural Resource Commission has identified the Sydney Basin Bioregion as being at "high biodiversity risk", and

(v) that land clearing has turned Australia into a global deforestation hot-spot and is exacerbating the climate emergency;

(b) opposes the destruction of ecological communities listed as critically endangered under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (Cth), and

(c) calls on the NSW Government to reject Mirvac's rezoning application and instead convert the Cumberland State Forest and adjacent forest at 55 Coonara Ave West Pennant Hills into national park.

No Yes Not passed by a modest majority

11th Jun 2020, 4:52 PM – Senate Motions - Forestry - Protect native forests

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The majority voted against a motion introduced by Tasmanian Senator Peter Whish-Wilson (Greens), which means it failed.

Motion text

That the Senate—

(a) notes that:

(i) Regional Forest Agreements are federal–state agreements under which native forest logging operations have been exempted from federal environment law (Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999 (EPBC Act)) for more than 20 years;

(ii) the Federal Court has found that:

(A) VicForests logging operations breached its Code of Practice for Timber Production and did not apply the precautionary principle when assessing impacts on the Greater Glider or Leadbeater's Possum, and

(B) these breaches of the Code mean that the native forest logging exemption does not apply, and the Central Highlands logging operation must be assessed under the EPBC Act,

(iii) this landmark decision sets an important legal precedent—meaning the exemption for native forest logging operations does not apply if they are in breach of rules that apply under the RFAs, and planned logging with a significant impact on federally listed threatened species must be assessed under the provisions of the EPBC Act; and

(iv) this decision has implications for native forest logging in all 10 areas under Regional Forest Agreements:

(A) Tasmania, with implications for iconic species such as the Tasmanian devil, Swift parrot, Eastern quoll, Giant freshwater crayfish, masked owl and others which are at serious risk due to logging;

(B) New South Wales in Eden, the North East NSW and Southern region, including implications for the feathertail glider, brushtail possum, koalas and others;

(C) Victoria in the Central Highlands, East Gippsland, Gippsland, West, and North East, including implications for the spot-tailed quoll, the smoky mouse and others; and

(D) Western Australia, including implications for the Western ringtail possum, remaining continental populations of quokkas, the forest red-tailed black cockatoo, Carnaby's black cockatoo, the numbat and other species, and

(b) calls on the Government to:

(i) accept the Federal Court decision that, in circumstances where the rules underpinning Regional Forest Agreements are not complied with, logging operations that will impact on Matters of National Environmental Significance need to be assessed under the provisions of the EPBC Act, and

(ii) take immediate, urgent action to ensure Australia's native forests are protected for their values including threatened species habitat, carbon storage, water supplies, and regional tourism.

No Yes Not passed by a modest majority

13th Feb 2020, 12:11 PM – Senate Motions - Coal Seam Gas Mining - Protect Pilliga Forest & Great Artesian Basin

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The majority voted against a motion introduced by NSW Senator Mehreen Faruqi (Greens), which means it failed.

Motion text

That the Senate—

(a) notes that:

(i) Prime Minister Scott Morrison has signed off on a $2 billion deal with the New South Wales Government that would fast track the Narrabri Gas Project (NGP), which will extract gas from coal seams lying deep beneath the mighty Pilliga Forest,

(ii) the NGP is fiercely opposed by local communities, farmers, and ecologists because it threatens the Pilliga Forest, the Great Artesian Basin, farmers' livelihoods, and food and water security, and

(iii) the NGP will further delay the shift to renewables and exacerbate the climate crisis; and

(b) calls on the Federal Government to protect the Pilliga Forest and the Great Artesian Basin from any new fossil fuel projects including the NGP.

No Yes Not passed by a modest majority

12th Feb 2020, 4:30 PM – Senate Motions - Climate Change - Logging in the Tarkine

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The majority voted against a motion introduced by Tasmanian Senator Peter Whish-Wilson (Greens), which means it failed.

Motion text

That the Senate—

(a) notes that:

(i) urgent action is required to mitigate climate change,

(ii) the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change special report on Climate Change and Land, stated that, in the short term, leaving existing forests standing is the most effective way to manage forests to mitigate climate change, and

(iii) the plans by the Tasmanian Government to allow logging in the Tarkine in north-west Tasmania will result in an increase in carbon emissions; and

(b) calls on the Tasmanian Government to abandon its plans to allow logging in the Tarkine.

No Yes Not passed by a modest majority

How "voted very strongly against" is worked out

The MP's votes count towards a weighted average where the most important votes get 50 points, less important votes get 10 points, and less important votes for which the MP was absent get 2 points. In important votes the MP gets awarded the full 50 points for voting the same as the policy, 0 points for voting against the policy, and 25 points for not voting. In less important votes, the MP gets 10 points for voting with the policy, 0 points for voting against, and 1 (out of 2) if absent.

Then, the number gets converted to a simple english language phrase based on the range of values it's within.

No of votes Points Out of
Most important votes (50 points)      
MP voted with policy 0 0 0
MP voted against policy 0 0 0
MP absent 0 0 0
Less important votes (10 points)      
MP voted with policy 0 0 0
MP voted against policy 5 0 50
Less important absentees (2 points)      
MP absent* 0 0 0
Total: 0 50

*Pressure of other work means MPs or Senators are not always available to vote – it does not always indicate they have abstained. Therefore, being absent on a less important vote makes a disproportionatly small difference.

Agreement score = MP's points / total points = 0 / 50 = 0.0%.

And then