PEACE deal signatories face an uphill battle to retain key planks of the agreement after Liberal leader Tony Abbott vowed to suspend further forest reserves within the first week of a Coalition government.
The Coalition released its forestry policy virtually on the eve of the election yesterday, confirming plans to pursue regional forest agreements and abandon the peace deal.
Liberal forestry spokesman and Tasmanian Senator Richard Colbeck said while he regularly met with the signatories, industry groups were captive.
"They've been paid off by the government and are voting with their wallets," Senator Colbeck said.
"No one should be surprised by our position ... the peace deal effectively means there will be no timber available to the industry by 2030."
Tasmanian forestry has emerged as a key point of policy difference, with Labor continuing to support the Forest Agreement three years in the making.
Yesterday morning Mr Abbott said there were "more than enough forests locked up in Tasmania already" and hit out at the deal.
"Forestry should be a clean, green industry of the future, not something we kill in the name of green ideology," Mr Abbott said.
Peace deal signatory Vica Bayley and Greens leader Christine Milne said rolling back World Heritage Area reserves was abhorrent.
Senator Milne said Mr Abbott's two choices were to apply to the World Heritage committee to strike reserves off or to change the law to allow logging, which "would trigger a World Heritage endanger listing".
"I can tell you, around the world, people would be shocked at the prospect the government would do that," Senator Milne said.
Mr Bayley said it would be the first time a developed country sought to do so, putting Tasmania among African and Arabian nations that degraded World Heritage sites to drill for oil.
Mr Bayley added the negotiations with "traditionally bitter rivals" around the peace deal table gave him confidence the signatories could overcome Liberal opposition to the deal.
"With cross-sectional support and cohesion returning to the community after decades ... I'm cautiously confident because logic usually prevails," Mr Bayley said.
Forest Industries Association of Tasmania chief executive Terry Edwards previously said he would work well alongside Senator Colbeck "as he understands the industry and the challenges it faces".
Mr Edwards was unavailable for comment yesterday.