Saturday, December 4, 2010

If you have finished your lunch and think you can stomach 15 minutes of weasel words watch this. Tasmanian premier cold on Gunns Tamar Mill prospects.......and..........Is Paul Oosting still effective in the role of TWS Pulp Mill Campaigner? Read the link to his latest interview on ABC's AM wesbite and have your say here

Airlie Ward on ABC Tasmania's Stateline interviews the three political leaders - Bartlett, Mckim and Hodgman.- Here

Judging by Premier David Bartlett's (well....uh....oh..ah) evasive response to Airlie Ward on whether the Tamar Valley Pulp Mill will be built he clearly does not believe it will ever get built.

Premier Bartlett explained that he hoped what is one of the most expensive and invasive private industrial projects ever seen in Tasmania because it would give "certainty to forest contractors"?

Yes thats right folks, Premier Bartlett supports the one of the largest industrial projects in the Southern hemisphere and a potential game changer for so many residents and existing businesses in the Tamar Valley because it might benefit a small minority sector of the overall Tasmanian workforce?

This is an extraordinary watering down of the basis for the Labor Government's support of the pulp mill.

Gone are Lennon Labor's promises about what would now be a joint foreign owned pulp mill. A Pulp Mill proposal that has already cost the jobs of hundreds of Tasmanians before a brick has been laid on the mill site.
What has happened to Paul Lennon's bizzare promise of
  • 2 000 long-term permanent jobs and an extra $6.7 billion being added to the Tasmanian economy?
  • Economic growth and security to Tasmania, particularly to our regions. $6.7 billion increase in Tasmania's economic output over the next two and a half decades.
  • By 2030, northern Tasmania alone will be $460 million better off because of the pulp mill.
  • The pulp mill will generate almost $900 million in extra Commonwealth and State taxes.
  • Each household is likely to have $870 extra each year to spend because of the pulp mill; $870 more every year to every household in Tasmania to help out families and to make life easier for Tasmanian families. Every month, every household in Tasmania will have more than $70 extra to make ends meet, every month of every year. That is a measure of the influence this project can have on the quality of life and living standards for all Tasmanian families. That is the real benefit that the pulp mill will bring to our State.
  • An extra $100 million in accommodation and hospitality spending during the construction period. Financial benefits to the whole Tasmanian economy, to all regions of our State, and to every Tasmanian family.
  • The pulp mill will provide 3 400 direct and indirect jobs throughout Tasmania during its building phase, including 2 500 on site during the peak of construction and more than 1 600 jobs throughout Tasmania when the mill is fully operating.
  • Employment will increase over time and is expected to peak, over the life of the project, at 2 000 extra jobs throughout Tasmania. That is 2 000 families with security to plan for the future. That is 2 000 families who will not have to worry about how they are going to pay the bills or afford to send their children to school or wonder where their next meal is coming from.
I dont know about you folks but my bullshit detector dial has gone off the scale. Can you believe Lennon stood up in the parliament and said this stuff? You would have thought that God had announced he was moving to Tasmania to perform miracles.

From ABC's AM Website

FELICITY OGILVIE: Having the peace plan work is vital to Gunns in terms of trying to get the finance it needs to get the pulp mill. Will environment groups support the pulp mill?

PAUL OOSTING: In terms of projects like Gunns proposed pulp mill in the State, north of the State there are a range of environmental issues still outstanding around that that we do want to see addressed, including its impact on the marine environment. It's been one of the fundamental issues we've been concerned about from day one and that's an issue that is now before the Federal Environment Minister, Tony Burke. And we'll be really watching that process closely to ensure that the public and independent scientists have the opportunity to scrutinise Gunns' impact assessment material.

FELICITY OGILVIE: But if Gunns can bring the mill up to an environmental standard that the Wilderness Society endorse, will environmental groups support the pulp mill in order to protect native forests in Tasmania?

PAUL OOSTING: Well look we're not in the business of endorsing projects, we're in the business of getting environmental protection for the country and that's what we're about as part of this process. It's important to understand that the local community also has serious concerns around issues like odour and so on.

Read the entire Paul Oosting Interview Here


  1. Paul Oosting has gone from being almost obesessive in his campaign to stop the Tamar Valley Pulp Mill, to merely having some concerns that need to be addressed. Paul's current language around the pulp mill represents a dramatic shift from the Paul Oosting-antimill campaigner prior to the forest principles negotiations.

    It's not just Tamar Valley pulp mill opponents who have noticed this, the Tasmanian media picked up on it a long time ago.

    My feeling is that Paul is now putting his own reputation as a pulp mill campaigner at risk, as well as the reputation of TWS who for a long time have nurtured and maintained a close and prodctive working relationship with Tamar Valley anti-mill campaigners.

    It is common knowledge that there is dis-satisfaction within the TWS ranks about the shifts in Oosting and Cadman's position on the Tamar Valley Pulp Mill and there is even greater disatisfaction within the Tamar Valley anti-pulp mill groups as expressed recently by some of the most high profile people in the Tamar Valley Campaign.

    Because of the dramatic shift in Oosting's position away from absolute opposition to the Tamar Valley mill, it is now questionable whether Paul is a hinderance or a help to the overall campaign to stop the mill from ever being built.

    Many good and decent people in the campaign have defended Paul and the Wilderness Society over the years but now find themselves dissapointed and disillusioned by Paul's dramatically softened stance

  2. I reckon one shouldn't read too much into Paul's line of tack. He's chosen to appear moderate in his views, which is generally the most convincing if he is to avoid alienating the majority of Tasmanians who possibly aren't so well-informed regarding the many shortcomings of the Tamar Valley pulp mill proposal. Friends of the Tamar have chosen to adopt a anti-Tamar-mill-no-matter-what stance. That is not always the best way to hold the attention of those who are mildly sceptical of Gunns' mill proposal. And you do need to hold their attention for some short period at least in order to present info for them to consider. There's been a lot of misinformation about the project by The Examiner and that is going to take a lot of work to counteract. However unless Tasmanians, particularly those in the northeast, do become informed, the project will probably end up being built in the Tamar because at present, a lot of local residents feel the economy needs such a project and they can't see any reason why the Tamar pulp mill wouldn't boost the economy. Can't do much to fight that impression if you're unable to hold their attention at all. How many people in the anti-mill lobby do you know that would spend much time reading through info written by the pro-mill lobby? Probably not a very large proportion.