An Open Letter to WWF - Environment Tasmania

An Open Letter to the President of WWF Australia

WWF support Tassal's destructive salmon farming operations. Help us let them know what's happening on the ground here in Tasmania - undersign our letter to their board.

President Mr Robert Purves
WWF Australia
1 Smail Street
NSW 2007

cc Mr Dermot O’Gorman, CEO WWF Australia

April 2017

Dear Mr Purves

An open letter regarding WWF's support of Tassal's destructive salmon operations

We, the undersigned, write to urge you to cease immediately your support of Tassal and its destructive salmon farming practices in the place we love, Tasmania.

Tassal has turned their largest lease in Macquarie Harbour into what scientists call a marine dead zone. The harbour is the outlet to the famous Franklin-Gordon river system and it was recently revealed that the dead zone from Tassal’s lease has spread into Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Area, which we are responsible for protecting for future generations.

This dead zone, creeping into the World Heritage Area, is putting at risk the very existence of the Maugean Skate, a prehistoric species found only in Tasmania. Like the World Heritage Area, the Skate is meant to be protected, but scientists estimate there are only 3000 individual skates left. They’re calling it the ‘thylacine (Tasmanian Tiger) of the sea’.

WWF does crucial work globally, but this time, you have got the balance wrong. Signing off on World Heritage damage and the extinction of a protected species is further than any environment group should go in a corporate partnership. You are making it harder for people who actually live in or love Tasmania to protect it. Tassal’s damage is not contained to Macquarie Harbour. A media investigation recently discovered Tassal were illegally holding protected fur seals. We know Tassal kill seals too, but they refuse to disclose how many.

We know that WWF takes up to $500,000 a year in direct payments from Tassal. We’re worried this creates a conflict of interest that is influencing your decision to support their outdated inshore farming methods, which the company is about to expand onto Tasmania’s stunning east coast.

WWF’s panda does not belong on Tassal packaging and your financial relationship makes it look like Tassal are simply buying kudos from a far-away international charity who could not possibly know what is happening on the ground. Your endorsement has to end. Please, for Tasmania’s marine ecosystem, withdraw from your endorsement and cease your financial relationship with Tassal.

We know you have no office or staff in Tasmania, so we invite you to come here and meet with us, to take a tour of our damaged World Heritage Area, to meet with experts on the endangered Maugean Skate and the communities working to protect their backyards from the destructive practices you endorse.


Jodie Epper
Chair, Environment Tasmania

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2,940 signatures

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Showing 2734 reactions

  • Denise Lytle
    signed 2017-04-29 08:37:06 +1000
  • Sandra & Jeremy Carter
    signed 2017-04-29 07:43:39 +1000
  • Linda Murphy
    signed 2017-04-29 07:23:38 +1000
  • Andrea Caloni
    signed 2017-04-29 07:20:54 +1000
  • Mel Green
    signed 2017-04-29 07:06:57 +1000
  • K Mackenzie
    signed 2017-04-29 01:10:09 +1000
  • Cary Hamlyn
    signed 2017-04-29 00:23:50 +1000
  • Rachel Andrew
    signed via 2017-04-28 22:23:11 +1000
  • Ferenc Jakab
    signed 2017-04-28 22:02:00 +1000
  • Beatrice Naylor
    signed 2017-04-28 21:42:11 +1000
  • Paulina Luczak
    signed 2017-04-28 18:56:00 +1000
  • Terri Hawes
    signed 2017-04-28 18:33:34 +1000
  • Dave Tooley
    posted about this on Facebook 2017-04-28 17:14:52 +1000
    Sign the petition: An Open Letter to the President of WWF Australia
  • Dave Tooley
    signed 2017-04-28 17:14:22 +1000
  • Monika Szigeti
    signed 2017-04-28 17:08:41 +1000
  • Dawn Pearce
    signed 2017-04-28 16:50:41 +1000
  • Kym Buttery
    signed 2017-04-28 15:10:36 +1000
    It is way beyond time that these destructive must be stopped, our Governments dont care nor do many companies operating all over the planet.
  • Reena Griffin
    signed 2017-04-28 13:17:22 +1000
  • Shelley Tennant
    posted about this on Facebook 2017-04-28 12:57:46 +1000
    Sign the petition: An Open Letter to the President of WWF Australia
  • Shelley Shay
    signed 2017-04-28 12:57:09 +1000
    I have seen first hand the dessimation of our waterways in and around the Franklin, Huon, Cygnet areas! Bloody disgusting that the Liberal Government of the day and also the Labor party in Tasmania are fully supportive of the expansion into Okehampton and Storm Bays in light of what we are now finding out about what has happened in Macquarie Harbour. Makes you wonder what the real damage is and how much are we not being told!
  • Gina Rodgers
    signed 2017-04-28 12:40:58 +1000
  • Carol Rea
    posted about this on Facebook 2017-04-28 12:38:07 +1000
    Sign the petition: An Open Letter to the President of WWF Australia. The panda logo does not belong on Tassal's stuff.
  • Alexandra Maran
    signed 2017-04-28 11:41:47 +1000
    Alexandra Maran
  • Ross Barwick
    signed 2017-04-28 10:58:31 +1000
    It is totally inappropriate for WWF to support, or condone, Tassal in Tasmania. Please get your act together and find out the reality of their destructive activities.
  • Mike Toomath
    signed 2017-04-28 10:37:25 +1000
  • Nik Bergman
    signed 2017-04-28 08:41:00 +1000
  • Carmela Lavezzari
    signed 2017-04-27 23:11:07 +1000
  • Carla Lusini
    signed 2017-04-27 22:35:29 +1000
    Carla Lusini
  • Marianne Peterson
    signed 2017-04-27 22:08:15 +1000
  • Elizabeth Hobson
    signed 2017-04-27 21:59:39 +1000