Thursday, October 04, 2007

Won't somebody think of the trees !

Oh the humanity. Oh the cruelty of it all !! Somebody think of the trees and animals !
Finally, and thankfully, Gunn's Pulp Mill has the go ahead from the Environment Minister Malcolm Turnbull. Heres the upside:

The project in Tasmania's north-east will be the island state's largest-ever private sector investment. Gunns, the company behind the mill, says it will provide up to 2,000 long-term jobs and add $6.7 billion to Tasmania's economic output over the next 25 years.

Well, lets see. Gunns bought the land, planned how to operate their business, raised capital, did their research, checked what other competitors they are up against, researched the technology of production and distribution, and expect to hire 2000 staff full-time. Running a simple business, let alone a full scale industrial plant, is pretty complex to manage. But I bet there was one risk that has cost Gunn's, one factor beyond their control, but one that can spell doom for their plans before they even get started.

The risk of political interference and meddling. Which has come about through:
  • A massive media scare campaign.
  • Dozens of angry environmental protestors outraged at Gunn's and deciding government should stop them.
  • Self righteous celebrities like Cate Blanchett with her eco-mansion, joining the cause to ban the pulp mill.
  • Political lobby groups and opposition parties getting massive headlines in newspapers, TV and radio playing partisan games and attacking the idea of letting Gunn's do what they want with the land that they purchased and hold the title too.
  • The issue becoming a political football in the run-up to a federal election

Malcolm Turnbull deserves credit for doing something unusual for a politician - nothing ! He didn't meddle, interfere, regulate or even threaten to monitor the project. And the only other political party that deserves credit is the LDP, who also have a candidate running for the seat of Wentworth and agreed to direct their preferences to Turnbull if he gave the go-ahead for the pulp-mill. The LDP said the following:
"We consider the Gunns pulp mill to be a test of whether Australia is open for business", said LDP Secretary David Leyonhjelm.

"The mill will be built on land zoned heavy industrial, next to an existing woodchip mill and just down the road from an aluminium smelter. It will use existing transport infrastructure and wood supplies.

"It was designed by a world-leading Finnish company and will utilise the world's best technology. It could not be built to a higher standard, and will be far superior to Australia's other pulp mill at Maryvale in Victoria.

"If the mill is prevented from proceeding despite all that, it means Australia is off-limits to paper production. We will be permanently dependant on imported paper, possibly made from our own wood chips.

"We expect extreme environmental groups such as the Greens to oppose the pulp mill, as they always oppose industrial development except when it requires taxpayers funds. What we didn't expect was that Malcolm Turnbull would be personally targeted by wealthy anti-business elements that have lost touch with reality.

"Government policy should not be determined by city-based romantics.

"Our candidate for Wentworth will be arguing for the pulp mill to proceed on the basis that the government has set the rules and the pulp mill meets them. Australia needs private sector investment of this kind if it is to maintain its economic progress.

"We believe we will appeal to voters who support our position on low taxes, small government and individual responsibility, but who are not inclined to vote Liberal because of its record of big government or intrusion into our personal lives", Mr Leyonhjelm said.

The LDP expects to announce its candidate for Wentworth within the next week.

So there are actual reasons to support the Gunn's Pulp Mill on environmental grounds. Its cleaner than the plant in Maryvale !

Lets take a look at how the tree-huggers down at the Spencer Street Soviet reacted to this:

It would appear that Mr Lennon has won the battle. He can now retire knowing that he has absolutely stuffed Tasmania as a clean green isle. I wonder where his children will go in the world to find somewhere like tassy is at this time.

  • Posted by: Peter Dodson on October 4, 2007 11:52 AM

What, was a nuclear bomb just dropped on tasmania ? The idea that our children won't recognise Tasmania is such hyperbole and exaggeration. But thats something that tree huggers use all the time.

I agree with Lainey - what a sad day. The impact may not be seen immediately, but I have no doubt that the consequences will make us regret the action.

  • Posted by: siobhan on October 4, 2007 11:55 AM

They can all see into the future ! No doubts, just have faith. That should be the mantra of the environmental movement.

This decision was based on Economics and bad economics alone!

again the Howard government has proved they are not interested in sustainability, only enhancing close relationships with big buyssiness that is over exploiting our natural resources, to the detriment of your children. we can only hope that mr Rudd and Labour would have any more foresight.

god bless Tasmania

  • Posted by: Jai Allison on October 4, 2007 11:57 AM

Ahh sustainability.. that magic word that suits the left's agenda so well. It can't be defined exactly, but whenever the left don't like some kind of change or development, they are quick to announce its not "sustainable". And when they propose all kinds of ridiculous, inefficient, unreliable ideas like wind power or alternative fuels, they are the wise overseers who can apply the "sustainable" label to it. In the free market, something is referred to as profitable if both parties gain from the exchange.

But in the crazed environmentalists world, there is always this magical 3rd party in every exchange called "the environment" who decides if it is sustainable or not. Of course, the planet doesn't have a voice, but somehow, these greenies and socialists can channel the planet's thoughts and speak on her behalf !!!

A sad day. How can the concern for the environment STILL be so low on the list of priorities? There are no jobs on a dead planet.

  • Posted by: meg streiff on October 4, 2007 12:03 PM

Because the whole point of a free economy is to kill the planet, and doom the rest of us !of course !!

A company like Gunns comes to dominate the entire social, political and economic framework of a state. Why?

I have never seen the sense in ripping up our forests in order to have jobs for morons whose only lifeskill is the ability to use a chainsaw. If these lazy dumb clowns were simply left on welfare we'd all be better off.

  • Posted by: Adrian on October 4, 2007 12:04 PM

Wow.. Gunn's collects taxes, runs the councils, courts, police, parliament.. they pay for roads, infrastructure. They operate hospitals and clinics, and schools, and universities. Damn those big companies and their power !! And the 2nd part of his rant is equally amusing. Look at his scorn and derision for the proleteriat. The moron who only knows how to use a chainsaw doesn't deserve a job !

When will humankind learn to just leave. Stuff. Alone?

  • Posted by: James Wall on October 4, 2007 12:20 PM

James. When will humankind learn to leave each other alone ? Gunn's bought the land, leave them alone ! The whole proposal and plan is based on thousands of voluntary trahsactions and exchanges. The labour hired, the land purchased, the skills and training and equipment. Nobody was coerced by Gunn's ! You should be happy James.

How can they get away with it?
How can they get away with any of the
rape and pillage of the environment
in Tas and elsewhere?


  • Posted by: Paul on October 4, 2007 12:36 PM

Thanks Paul. I'm weeping for you.