I have to confess I have a love affair with Tassie! I am currently planning my next expedition over there. I love the place. I am green, I know, I am bias accordingly. I don’t like the sound of Gunns pulp mill…
The federal government has a responsibility to assess the mill, but Environment Minister Malcolm Turnbull recently announced his intention to postpone his decision pending the outcome of an investigation by a government scientific task force.
The pulp mill is expected to have a massive impact on the environment and economy of Tasmania, a state that relies heavily on its clean, green brand. Every year the mill will pulp up to four million tonnes of wood and burn an additional 500 000 tonnes of wood for electricity generation, and consume a staggering 26 billion litres of fresh water. In addition, every day approximately 64 000 tonnes of toxic effluent will be pumped into Bass Strait. Despite the pulp mill’s massive appetite for forests and the effects of logging on wildlife, water resources and climate change, these issues have escaped scrutiny in both the state and federal governments’ assessments.
The federal government must assess the effect of dumping 30 billion litres of effluent a year into the marine waters that our sea life rely on for survival and that local fishermen and their families rely on for their livelihood. This effluent will contain the persistent pollutants dioxins and furans, which do not break down over time and will build up in the food chain. This, combined with the relatively stagnant nature of the ‘dumping site’ in Bass Strait, has led to real fears for the marine environment, migratory species such as whales, turtles and sea birds and the future of the fishing industry.
The Tamar Valley site is in the heart of a tourism and wine-growing hotspot in northern Tasmania. Fishermen, wine growers, tourism operators and Tasmania’s brand depend on the maintenance of the clean, green label. Air pollution from the mill has the potential to seriously harm these growing businesses.
Treating our air and oceans as a toxic waste dump and our magnificent forests as a resource to be exploited poses a risk to Tasmania’s future, and the future of generations to come.
Contact Environment Minister Malcolm Turnbull, Labor Shadow Minister for the Environment Peter Garrett, and your federal member of parliament to let them know you want to see Tasmania’s future and families protected and are opposed to this pulp mill proposal. Contact details for sitting members can be found at www.aph.gov.au Visit www.wilderness.org.au to find out more.
Source – here.