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Gunns: from Tasmania to Canberra « Previous | |Next »
April 5, 2007

After Gunns withdrew from the bilateral Resource Planning and Development Commission inquiry in Tasmania in early March, the Federal Government is obliged to ensure that the mill will meet all Commonwealth environmental laws in an assessment process separate to the Tasmanian Government's whitewash. The relevant commonwealth act is the EPBC Act.

Ray Norman, You always know when its Autumn in Tasmania #1, 2007

The Australian Greens have indicated that an inadequate inquiry into the mill's impact will trigger a legal challenge, especially if the Federal Government refuses to assess the effect of more logging on endangered old growth native forest, animal and bird species.

Hopefully the Commonwealth assessment will break with Gunns being in the driving seat dictating pulp mill matters to the Tasmanian Government, which then does Gunn's bidding.

There is a lot for the Commonwealth to assess since, in its latest submission, Gunns contends that:

#Seven endangered species in the local area, including the green and gold frog, the Tasmanian devil, the spotted-tailed quoll, the wedge-tailed eagle, the swift parrot, the masked owl and the eastern barred bandicoot will not be affected by the mill's construction and operation.
#The wood supply source for the mill is not an issue the Commonwealth should consider.
#Its 200m-long treated effluent discharge pipeline into Bass Strait will not impact on the local salmon fishery.
#Its 100ha pulp mill and associated power plant will not harm endangered plant species at its Bell Bay land through "micro-siting" principles.
#During construction of the ocean outfall, recreational fishermen will be affected by temporary exclusion zones.

| Posted by Gary Sauer-Thompson at 3:29 PM |