Articles

The story of the Phoenix Timber

John Maddock*, Timber Workers For Forests. Satire: Ted Mead Pub: Oct 23
24.10.14 6:00 am

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Not long after a diverse group of like-minded individuals came together to form Timber Workers For Forests at a meeting at the Longley International Hotel in 2001, convenor & founding President Graham Green told us of a coupe he’d heard of which was the epitome of clearfelled destruction. And thus began the TWFF story of EPO74D, (west of Geeveston, about 20kms by road via Arve & Bennetts Rds), which comes to a partial close next Saturday with the auction of timber salvaged from the coupe after it was burned.  Hopefully, some of that timber will continue as timber for many years, having been made into furniture or boats. … The figures which emerged were astonishing: only 26% of the timber volume of the forest was removed during clearfelling and just 1% of the combined special species timbers was removed by the harvesting contractors (calculated from information gleaned from Forestry Tasmania).  An estimated 97,800 tonnes of timber at an average of 998 tonnes /hectare remained on the ground in the coupe following logging and salvage.  Myrtle was the most commonly documented timber remaining, followed by eucalypt, celery-top pine and sassafras.

Over the next few months, we milled and racked the timber and this Saturday (25 October 2014) on Franklin waterfront the public will have a chance to buy some of it.  TWFF has donated a little over 7 cubic metres to the Franklin Working Waterfront Association Inc. to sell to raise funds.

• Download, read for yourself, the report on EPO74D, where there is a picture of the incredible waste ...

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Paul Harriss: Protecting Workers from Radical Protesters

Trevor Gauld State Secretary CEPU – Tasmania: Silencing Dissent: Forests no longer mentioned in laws “These laws are an ideological attack from this Government against anyone who has an opinion different to theirs. The Liberals are simply trying to silence dissent against their bad policies and poorly planned budget cuts.”

• Vica Bayley, Warrick Jordan: FSC undermined by backing logging of 600-year-old trees: The standards of the world’s leading timber certifying body, the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC), are being questioned after one of its British auditors gave an environmental tick of approval to log forests containing 600-year-old trees in Western Australia. The WA Government’s logging agency, the Forest Products Commission (FPC), has secured FSC certification from Soil Association Woodmark for FPC’s logging operations in the tall eucalypt Karri forests in the state’s south-west. These forests are also home to at least 15 threatened species including Red-Tailed Black Cockatoos, Mainland Quokkas and Western Quolls.

Andrew Wilkie: Woodchip pile at Macquarie Point: Will you immediately quash this plan?

Nick McKim: Legislative Council Should Stay Strong on Anti-Protest Legislation

FSC Australia CEO Natalie Reynolds: Independent auditor approves the Forest Products Commission for Controlled Wood FSC Australia CEO Natalie Reynolds said it was important to understand that Controlled Wood is not full FSC Certification and is not an endorsement of responsible forest management. “Controlled Wood evaluations allow companies to avoid unacceptable wood being mixed with full FSC Certified and/or FSC recycled wood in products carrying the FSC Mix label,” Reynolds said. “For many forest managers it is the first step towards achieving full Forest Management Certification and provides assessment against only the FSC’s most fundamental prerequisites, such as ensuring wood is not illegally harvested and harvesting does not threaten High Conservation Values.”

Christine Milne: FSC decision rings alarm bells in Tasmania

Richard Colbeck: Green groups should respect independent process

Paul Harriss: Labor, Unions’ criticism of protest bill hollow

Paul Harriss: Greens’ Breathtaking Hypocrisy

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Politics | International | Local | National | State | Forestry | Gunns | Economy | Environment | Editor's Choice | Opinion | History | Planning/Heritage | Personal | Society

Hello Babies, Welcome to Earth ... Paul Kelly & Co for MONA FOMA ...

Rebecca Fitzgibbon, Events Media Manager; Jane Menzies, Media Coordinator, Museum of Old and New Art
24.10.14 5:55 am

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Hobart’s MONA FOMA (Museum of Old and New Art Festival of Music and Art) in Tasmania, Australia, is sailing back in for the New Year with a lineup more eclectic than ever.

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Arts | What's On

Trading away the National Interest

Australian Greens spokesperson for Trade, Senator Peter Whish-Wilson Media Release. Pic: of Trade Minister Andrew Robb
24.10.14 5:53 am

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Trans-Pacific Partnership agreement negotiations are about trading away the National Interest … “The TPP agreement is an assault on Australian laws and Australian sovereignty in the name of multi-national corporations. “The only way we have any understanding of what our Government has traded away comes from leaked texts of the TPP agreement that have been published by Wikileaks. “It is apparent that Australia is facing more expensive new medicines, the criminalisation of copyright infringements, and giving multi-national corporations the right to sue state and federal governments for simply making laws in the public interest that might impinge on their profits. “Last night in Senate Estimates DFAT refused to answer even the most basic questions about what we’re trading away. DFAT should be more accountable to the parliament and the Australian public. …

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Five months and still no answer on Nelson Bay River Mine breach.

Scott Jordan, Campaign Coordinator, Save the Tarkine Media Release. ABC pic of the mine site
24.10.14 5:50 am

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Save the Tarkine has written again to the Department of the Environment expressing concern that after five months there are still no answers forthcoming regarding what Save the Tarkine believes to be clear breach of the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act by Shree Minerals at it’s Nelson Bay River mine site in the Tarkine.

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Canada’s Terror: 5 Fast Facts

Heavy. Pub: Oct 23. Pic: of Michael Zehaf-Bibeau
24.10.14 5:45 am

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A 32-year-old Quebec man who had recently converted to Islam shot and killed a Canadian soldier standing guard at the War Memorial in Ottawa, then traveled to the nearby Canadian parliament, where he opened fire before being fatally shot by the sergeant-at-arms, whose heroic actions likely saved countless lives. Multiple media outlets identified the man as Michael Zehaf-Bibeau, who had been known as Michael Joseph Hall before converting. Here’s what we know about Bibeau ...

• Use the TT NEWS dropdown menu (top navigation bar) for breaking news and commentary ...

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First major book on Tasmanian wine to be published in November

Tony Walker, Vintage Tasmania
24.10.14 5:30 am

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Read all about it in TT Plate/Grape, where you can comment

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Society | Wine

Death of a Giant

Lindsay Tuffin. Pic: of Gough Whitlam. Pub: Oct 21
23.10.14 5:30 am

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ABC Radio is reporting the death at 98 of Gough Whitlam,  who bestrode the political landscape of Australia like a giant, 1972-1975.

Use the TT NEWS Dropdown Menu (top navigation bar) for Breaking News on this story.

ABC: Gough Whitlam dies aged 98; Family says ‘loving and generous’ father was ‘source of inspiration’

Guardian: Gough Whitlam dies at age 98 Prime minister for just three years, he brought in sweeping changes that transformed Australia and inspired a generation of progressive politicians

Kim Booth: Vale Gough Whitlam

Bryan Green: Remembering Gough Whitlam

• Pete Godfrey, in Comments: Thankyou so much Gough for what you did. I once wrote to Mr Whitlam, I wanted to tell him how much he inspired people and how much I appreciated what he tried to do for our country. I did not want to wait until he died to say what I felt about him. The most surprising thing to me was that he rang me and left a message (unfortunately I could not take the call) and thanked me for my thoughts and said he agreed with me that the way the Howard government was behaving made him also feel ashamed to be an Australian. The gesture of ringing me and leaving a message meant and still means a lot to me.

Will Hodgman: Gough Whitlam

• What Crikey’s Guy Rundle says ...

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ICC asked to prosecute Abbott government. Refugee Convention Death Knell ...

Andrew Wilkie, Independent Denison Media Release. ABC Pic of Andrew Wilkie Pub: Oct 22
23.10.14 5:15 am

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The Independent Member for Denison, Andrew Wilkie, and eminent human rights advocate and lawyer, Greg Barns, have formally requested the Prosecutor at the International Criminal Court (ICC) investigate crimes against asylum seekers by members of the Abbott Government. Download a copy of the letter below ...

• Sister Brigid Arthur, Pamela Curr: Death Knell to Australia’s commitment to Refugee Convention: “In this week when we mourn the passing of Gough Whitlam, we remember a day in 1975 when he welcomed 200 Vietnamese refugee babies in “Operation Babylift” . The babies were evacuated in shoeboxes from the terror of Vietnam. My nephew is married to one of these babies. His wife, a teacher and mother is now a member of our family having been welcomed at a time when Australia was a kinder, more open hearted country,” says Sister Brigid Arthur of the Brigidine Asylum Seekers Project.” I contrast this sadly with the treatment of babies who under this Bill will,be condemned to the tent camps on Nauru.” More below ...

Kim Booth: $1 billion Sunk in Offshore Detention Camps Should be Reinvested in Tasmanian Asylum Haven Push

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The Bid for Marine Protection in Antarctica ...

Dae Levine, AOA Communications Director. Pic*
23.10.14 5:05 am

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So far, France, Germany, New Zealand, the United States of America, Korea, Italy, Poland, Sweden, Belgium, Norway, the United Kingdom, Spain and the European Union have ticked their support (for a marine protected areas in Antarctica)

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STATE: Former DPP criticises delays at Tasmania’s misconduct watchdog

ABC. Pub: Oct 22
23.10.14 5:00 am

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Tasmania’s Integrity Commission is taking too long to investigate complaints, a hearing has been told.

Treasurer rejects unions’ pay freeze plan, threatens health and education jobs

Australian Federal Police officers withdraw from Hobart Airport

Gwyneth Paltrow and Heston Blumenthal among guests at November tourism event in Tasmania

Five new Tasmanian irrigation schemes named in Federal Government Green Paper

Tas elective surgery waiting lists still longest in the country

Tensions with Russia threaten to derail Antarctic marine reserve proposal

VANESSA GOODWIN, Attorney-General ...

Vanessa Goodwin: Integrity Commission Submission

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Politics | International | Local | National | State | Economy | Environment | Integrity Commission Inquiries | Opinion | History | Society

Tassie’s forestry wars echo UK’s motorway wars ...

Don Knowler, http://donaldknowler.com/ Pub: Oct 21
23.10.14 4:45 am

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“Mum and dad’’ demonstrators, fiery activists, a government intent on silencing environmental protesters, the battle of Twyford Down in Britain two decades ago has an echo in the latest phase of the forestry wars in Tasmania. It was a battle the British Government under John Major would ultimately win, even though it can now be said the Conservative administration lost the war. The victory, though, in pushing through plans to build a motorway cutting across verdant downland where the poet Alexander Pope had often walked as a schoolboy would leave a scar on both the British countryside and the British psyche.

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Writers | Don Knowler | Politics | International | Local | National | State | Forestry | Gunns | Economy | Environment | Editor's Choice | Health | Opinion | History | Planning/Heritage | Personal | Society

LOCAL: The UTAS city ... and Conflicts of Interest. Despard Gallery’s complaint ...

Eva Ruzicka, Eva Ruzicka's blog, http://evaruzicka.blogspot.com.au/ Pic* Pub: Oct 21
23.10.14 4:35 am

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Not for us any of Oxford’s gentle spires if Hobart is to become the UTAS city, HERE … Note that the Officer Recommendation is for Refusal. From what I’ve heard, the application is running into problems as it well exceeds the limits of the City’s Planning Scheme.  What UTAS is asking for will create a large mass of building with four linked towers at 15 levels, which exceed the existing heights in the area.  In effect, lifting something like the State Library building and putting it down on the site, as one person commented. For video run through of the site, go: HERE

Conflict of interest and bias in decision making, HERE And this is where the rubber hits the road in so many of those allegations of corrupt local government practice.  Who has a conflict of interest?  And how is it judged? Can I say to anyone who is elected to local government that this is one of the most crucial parts of your role that you must get right at all times? This is not a time for grey areas or angels polka-dotting on pinheads of needles.  Either you have a conflict or you don’t, and you’ll have to prove it within the confines of the rules if called on to do so.  …

EARLIER on Tasmanian Times, Tony Hagar on Hobart and its architecture ...

Anna Reynolds: Controversial building vote needs to wait for fresh Council

• Steven Joyce, Despard Gallery ... We have had numerous assurances that all will be cleared and the bike path marked, the reticence of IMAS - UTAS management is pretty sad as I again look at the architects’ unresolved vision that was going to add street life to the area. I am also concerned as marking out parking spaces on the other side of the fence give the impression that the fence is a permanent fixture. The complacency in regard this aesthetic eyesore by the relevant bureaucrats is pathetic, particularly given the recent PR that labels Hobart as a funky cultural getaway. Given Salamanca is a key tourism destination, this type of oversight is very disappointing for businesses and residents that have invested in living and operating in the area. We were assured that it would be cleared by Dark Mofo in June, five months on that has still not happened. Things need to change ASAP.

THURSDAY, October 23 ...

• Eva Ruzicka: Melville Street UTAS proposal: Questions that must be answered ... !

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Keeping alive the British colonial tradition of tugging our forelocks ...

Nicola Goc* Pic* Pub: Oct 20
23.10.14 4:30 am

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The price Tasmanian taxpayers pay each year for the privilege of keeping alive the British colonial tradition of tugging our forelocks ...

• Greg James, in Comments: Yes, TGC it is a province of Canada, officially known as Newfoundland and Labrador. It became a province in c1948. The Newfies like Tasmanians were the national joke and they economically collapsed with its cod industry in 1992. Now it is now the third most wealthy province in Canada; they managed to find some brains and exploit them. Nevertheless they only pay their Governor a fraction of what we do and they are the ones who can afford to pay more. The Canadians are peculiar in that the people they choose to do this job see it as a form of community service and the pay is unimportant to them; go figure. They also don’t seem to choose lawyers; rather they choose the types that can sell their island, journalists, commentators or persons of notable accomplishment. Our versions would be Peter Cundall, Judy Tierney, Richard Flanagan or Elizabeth Blackburn.

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Solar flare

NASA/Solar Dynamics Observatory
22.10.14 5:50 am

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The sun emitted a significant solar flare on October 19, 2014. NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory captured this image of the event in an extreme ultraviolet wavelength that can see the intense heat of a flare and that is typically colorized in teal. Solar flares are powerful bursts of radiation. Harmful radiation from a flare cannot pass through Earth’s atmosphere to physically affect humans on the ground, however—when intense enough—they can disturb the atmosphere in the layer where GPS and communications signals travel.

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Environment | Science

Multiple helpings of the ‘Wild and dramatic, cultured and quirky, isolated yet accessible’

Will Hodgman, Premier, Minister for Tourism, Hospitality and Events Media Release Pic* Pub: Oct 21
22.10.14 4:30 am

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Tasmania: World’s Must-See in 2015 … Who wouldn’t want to visit a region that’s described by the Lonely Planet as: “Wild and dramatic, cultured and quirky, isolated yet accessible – the delivery of offerings from Tasmania’s plate may require multiple helpings.” …

Scott Bacon: Tasmania’s Lonely Planet listing welcomed

Kim Booth: Don’t Chip Lonely Planet Rating

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Where’s the acknowledgement that a crisis exists?

Cassy O’Connor MP | Greens Health spokesperson Media Release Pub: Oct 21
22.10.14 4:20 am

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Ice in Tasmania Last night’s Four Corners program ( ABC HERE ) revealed the devastation Chrystal methamphetamine, or Ice, is wreaking on individuals and families in North and North West Tasmania, Greens Health spokesperson Cassy O’Connor MP said today.

Michael Ferguson: Drug Use in the North-West

Rebecca White: Drug problems a wake-up call for Government

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Politics | Local | State | Health | Opinion | Legal | Society

I met a lady nearly twice my age today ...

Hilary Burden* https://hilaryburden.wordpress.com/ Pic: of Hilary Burden
21.10.14 4:15 am

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I met a lady nearly twice my age today. I use the word ‘lady’ because to me ‘woman’ seems not kind enough, cold as fish, and certainly too small a word. Like calling vintage Champagne “fizz”.

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Writers | Hilary Burden | Opinion | Personal | Society

Voting: How low can we go?

Bob Hawkins
21.10.14 4:00 am

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PONDERING who I felt was worthy of being an elected member of my local council, I was examining the bits of paper the Tasmanian Electoral Commission (TEC) had sent me. I found the numbering instructions on the voting slip disturbing, as did I the TEC’s assurances about the security of my vote.

• Julian Type, in Comments: Bob, If you do not number all the boxes, there is a very real chance that your vote will exhaust at some point during the distribution of preferences when, in fact, you may have a clear preference (or, in your own terms perhaps, aversion) among the remaining candidates. The TEC would be doing voters a disservice to induce exhausted votes. As for the count in 2009, I tend to prefer the innocent explanation, but, then, I would!

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Writers | Bob Hawkins | Politics | Local | State | Economy | Opinion | Society

NATION: Tony and coal, ‘A contradiction to all available evidence ...’

Dr Kingsley Faulkner AM, Chair Doctors for the Environment Australia. Wikipedia pic of Tony Abbott
20.10.14 4:45 am

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In response to Prime Minister Abbott’s recent comment ( SMH here ) that “coal is good for humanity”, a group of health experts has sent him a damning open letter (below)  describing his statement “as a contradiction to all available evidence.”

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STATE: Fracking poses risks to agriculture, tourism, Tasmania’s reputation ...

Carly Rusden*. Pic*
20.10.14 4:41 am

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… The license covers some of Tasmania’s most productive farmland, as well as a vast network of water tables.  Fracking poses risks to agriculture, Tasmania’s tourism industry, Tasmania’s reputation as a clean and green place, as well as the health of all living organisms by contamination of water and air. Renewable technologies such as wind and solar should be exploited before we continue to extract non renewable resources, further damaging our planet and destroying our right to safe drinking water and clean air.  …

Gillian Blair, Letter to Editor: Gasfield’s hidden agenda ...

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The Flan-Man Triumphs

Lindsay Tuffin. Pub: Oct 15
20.10.14 4:31 am

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Tasmanian writer Richard Flanagan has just been announced as the 2014 winner of the Man Booker Prize ...

• Use the TT NEWS Dropdown Menu (top Nav Bar) for more on the Flanagan triumph, for The Narrow Road to the Deep North ...

ABC: Richard Flanagan, prominent Tasmanian author, wins Man Booker Prize ...

Guardian: Man Booker prize: Richard Flanagan wins with ‘timeless depiction of war’ Australian novelist picks up award for story of prisoners and captors on Burma railway in The Narrow Road to the Deep North

Christine Milne: Congratulations to Richard Flanagan

Pete Hay, Mercury: Liberating the spirit of our island: Richard Flanagan takes Tasmania out into the world…  By the time Flanagan came along, the negative shadow of the generation of the 1960s had all but expunged any sense that Tasmania’s unfolding story was one that could engage the creative imagination. Flanagan changed all that. The island, he insisted, is saturated with mythical portent. He made it legitimate to stay put; to take Tasmania for one’s creative canvas. And he, personally, took Tasmania to the world. His legacy is, I think, beyond calculation. Almost incredibly, this is the man for whom former premier Paul Lennon decreed there to be “no place” in the “new Tasmania”. The trouble with the ex-premier’s call is that it is not he but Flanagan who defines the “new Tasmania”. Nevertheless, this episode cut Flanagan to the bone — not Lennon’s attack as such, because Flanagan is as fierce as he is eloquent when it comes to the island’s muddling and spiteful politics, and he had already called out Lennon for worse than he received. If you dish it out, you have to take it when it is served back. No, what cut Flanagan was the perceived lack of outrage on the part of the Tasmanian arts community, and its literary practitioners in particular. There was no flood of indignant letters to the press, and Flanagan felt isolated, abandoned …

Will Hodgman: Richard Flanagan Wins Man Booker

Nick McKim: Congratulations Richard Flanagan

Tasmanian Writers’ Centre: Congratulations Richard, so well deserved!

7.30 Report: Watch the Flan-Man interviewed by Leigh Sales ... as his mates party at the Hope and Anchor

Bob Ellis: ‘The World Just Is’: Richard Flanagan’s The Narrow Road To The Deep North

• Gerard Henderson executive director of The Sydney Institute: Sorry, Mike, Nazism was a secular movement — unlike today’s Islamic State

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Writers | Lindsay Tuffin | Richard Flanagan | Books | Economy | Editor's Choice | Society

STATE: The possibility of Eden

Astrid Miller, Earth as Teacher, http://www.ecoevolutionaries.com
20.10.14 4:30 am

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I want to live in a State of possibility, awe and wonder, and that could be Tasmania. Graeme Wood is offering us a most powerful symbol of regeneration with his $50 million dollar plan for an Eden style project at Triabunna, a re-generation of our generation.

EARLIER ON TASMANIAN TIMES ...

How great cities deal with woodchips ...

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Fishery Consultation Another Tick-Box In The Super Trawler Story

Rebecca Hubbard, Nobby Clark Media Release
20.10.14 4:15 am

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The AFMA organised stakeholder consultation on the Small Pelagic Fishery last Friday was clearly designed as a media platform for the Australian Government to say that they had undertaken consultation with stakeholders. Conservation and recreational fishing groups remain concerned that these box-ticking exercises could be a signal that super trawlers are being considered for introduction into our waters. The groups remain united in the campaign to stop super trawlers being introduced into Australian waters and concerned with the low level of data available on the fishery’s movements and how to avoid localised depletion.

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A Statement from the Maslin Family ...

via DFAT
20.10.14 3:50 am

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The Maslin family, who lost loved ones on MH17, have asked the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade to issue the following statement on their behalf ...

EARLIER on Tasmanian Times, MH370 ...

Emirates Head Critical of MH 370 Investigation

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Andrew Nikolic’s Middle Eastern vision provides something for everyone

BERNARD KEANE Crikey politics editor
20.10.14 3:47 am

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Tasmanian Liberal MP Andrew Nikolic certainly has a distinguished career: an impressive senior military service record in Iraq and Afghanistan as well as stints as a military academic and as a senior bureaucrat in Defence. All that helps explain why he was appointed to the Joint Committee on Intelligence and Security.

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More on the nesting Peregrine Falcons ... (2)

Nick Mooney Wildlife Biologist.
20.10.14 3:45 am

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Female leaves to accept food from male off for food

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Environment | History | Society

Mother Mountain: The Symphony of Birdsong (34)

Don Knowler, http://donaldknowler.com/ Pic*
20.10.14 3:30 am

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The “Respect the Mountain” forum ( here, here, and here ) at the Hobart Town Hall earlier this year prompted Don Knowler to return to a diary he compiled after daily rambles on Mt Wellington during the previous year. In what promises to be a momentous year in the modern history of Kunanyi, the weekly diary gives the mountain and its wildlife its own voice. All Don’s Mother Mountain columns - and much more by this superb writer - can be found under the Category, Don Knowler, here

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Writers | Don Knowler | Politics | Local | State | Economy | Environment | Opinion | History | Society

Antarctica: Opportunity for global leadership and lasting legacy

Dae Levine, AOA Communications Director. Pic: John Weller
20.10.14 3:15 am

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AOA calls on CCAMLR to agree on marine protection of the Ross Sea and East Antarctica “Opportunity for global leadership and lasting legacy”

• Lieutenant Governor of Tasmania, His Excellency The Honourable Chief Justice Alan Blow OAM, will today open the thirty-third meeting of the Commission for the Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources (CCAMLR) ...

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Is the taxpayer entitled to any level of basic health protection ... ?

Richard Barton, Tasmania
20.10.14 3:00 am

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In the Mercury of 19/10/14 it stated that there were “fears for rural nursing” then proceeded to discuss the loss of rural facilities, doctors, nurses and management positions.

Mercury: Hunt for new Tasman Peninsula GP allays fears

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The Probe is closed

Lindsay Tuffin
20.10.14 2:45 am

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The Probe thread has been closed. Tasmanian Times exists to seek truth and be fair to all. Readers are reminded of Our Code of Conduct ( Here ).

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Writers | Lindsay Tuffin | Politics | International | Local | National | State | Forestry | Gunns | Blogging | Economy | Environment | Opinion | History | Planning/Heritage | Media | Society