Firstly a few Thank you’s
A HUGE THANKYOU TO THE ANZ BANKING CORPORATION. Thats right I am thanking a corporation, never thought I would live to see the day when a company (especially a bank) would put the environment and its customers before the almighty dollar. It appears however this is the case.
Customers of the ANZ who opposed the Tamar Valley Pulp Mill began a campaign to remove funds, close accounts and even transfer loans away from the ANZ, as they were the main financier for the mill. ANZ came out yesterday and announce they will not be funding the Pulp Mill.
Three cheers hip hip horray!
Next THANKYOU TO ALL THOSE PEOPLE WHO WITHDREW THEIR FUNDS FROM THE BANK you did it well done.
It does appear that people can make a difference, and even if you are a pensioner and feel you can t do much it does on the face of it appear you can make a difference to the world….. I humbely thankyou!
A note of appreciation to the New Tasmanian Premiere David Bartlett, who became Premiere on Monday following the resignation of Paul Lennon.
Following is a newspaper report from The Australian, which outlines the reason we are feeling slightly more confident of this project failing:
Bartlett goes dry on government support for Gunns pulp mill
Matthew Denholm | May 29, 2008
NEW Tasmanian Premier David Bartlett has scrapped plans for taxpayers to build, own or fund a vital $60million water pipeline for the Gunns pulp mill.
Under former premier Paul Lennon, the Government had secret and well-advanced plans for taxpayers to own and subsidise the 35km pipeline to supply water to the Tamar Valley mill.
Mr Bartlett yesterday told ABC Radio that government ownership of the pipeline would not occur.
“I would rule out the Government owning or building such a pipeline,” Mr Bartlett said.
Although he initially appeared to leave open the option of funding the pipeline yesterday, his spokeswoman last night said this had now been ruled out.
Mr Bartlett said other infrastructure needed for the mill, which includes a 19km effluent pipeline, an upgraded wharf and a road interchange at the mill site, would only be funded if they met a stringent public-interest test.
“For any infrastructure project to receive government funding, it will have to pass a strong public-benefit test,” he said.
The Australian understands that before Mr Bartlett became Premier following Mr Lennon’s resignation on Monday, papers for next month’s state budget included $12 million over four years for a new road interchange at the mill’s entrance on the East Tamar Highway.
Mr Bartlett has been involved in fine-tuning the budget in the past two days and yesterday refused to say if this funding would remain in the budget, to be handed down on June 12.
Mr Lennon, whose fast-tracking of the mill significantly damaged his premiership, had argued the pipelines might aid irrigation, as well as sewerage, for the Launceston area, thereby justifying public involvement.
Mr Bartlett’s refusal to consider any government involvement in the water pipeline makes it far less likely landowners refusing to allow the pipeline on their land could be forced to do so.
One of the main benefits of government involvement for Gunns would have been the ability to use its powers of compulsory acquisition to obtain access to private land in the pipeline corridors.
Several landowners have refused to agree to terms at any price with Gunns because they bitterly oppose the mill, proposed for Long Reach, about 35km north of Launceston.
The Wilderness Society has a legal opinion that land for the pipelines could be easily compulsorily acquired if it is owned or built by a government agency.
The only other option would be for an act of parliament to declare Gunns an acquiring authority under the Land Acquisitions Act, or parliamentary approval to compulsorily acquire land on Gunns behalf.
Gunns declined to comment.
This is a small victory for those of us opposed to the development, but we still need to remain on guard.
Funding for this Mill is rumoured to be available from sources outside Australia, however with the present pressures on companies to be environmentally responsible, plant trees not remove them, the threat to the old growth forests in Tasmania, the global financial pressures, rising oil prices and other corporate pressures this may not be as easy as Mr Gay is attempting to make it sound.
As with any investment, corporation must way up the benefits of any financial funding and this one is no different. However with the events of the past few days any interest in funding this project must be beginning to waver.
When you look at it in this context: ANZ Gunns financial backer for 15 years says NO!, The State Government says NO!, the population say NO!, the laws which were put in place in order to facilitate the growth of more plantation on private property are removed, the possibility of further restriction of logging with in old growth forests my be changed, the available of the timber in general may be limited, along with the Global pressures you would think any investor considering in funding this project would and should be getting nervous.
This shows what we are fighting to stop, what we are trying to save and why!
For those who wish to find more information on the subject of the Pulp MIll please check out these links:
Leave your messages at these sites, show your concern….
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