Image for Air quality ... courtesy of Forestry Tasmania ...

*Pic: Smoke from two fires West of Glen Huon And Another to the NW(far right)210316.jpg

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Smoke from three fires meeting over Glen Huon ...

Air pollution spiked off the graph in several Huon Valley towns on Tuesday morning, after Forestry Tasmania lit multiple regeneration burns around the Huon on Monday afternoon. 

Despite the surge in air pollution, Forestry Tasmania plans to light another seven fires on Tuesday afternoon in the Huon and nearby upper Derwent regions.

The Health Department advises that some people should take precautions to protect their health when the hourly PM2.5 level reaches 25 µgm3. On Tuesday morning, air pollution readings for PM2.5 peaked at 70 µgm3 in Geeveston, 41 µgm3 in Judbury, and 30 µgm3 in Huonville.

Regeneration burns are part of Forestry Tasmania’s commercial logging operations. They are often confused with fuel reduction burns conducted by councils, PWS and the TFS for community safety.

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Pink sun through forestry smoke, Monday afternoon

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Huon Valley under smoke ...

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... and without smoke ...

*Ben Lohberger has worked in media and politics in Tasmania for the past 15 years. He lives in the Huon Valley, and is a longtime contributor to TasmanianTimes.

• Ben Lohberger in Comments: UPDATE: Forestry Tasmania announced at 10am on Tuesday morning that it would light eight regen burns in southern Tasmania, but ultimately lit only two of those fires. It’s not clear whether they lit less fires because of air quality concerns in the Huon, or the widespread Telstra outage this afternoon, or some other issue. A mate has suggested the much lighter smoke pollution this morning in the much bigger population centre of Hobart was probably the reason, but who knows.

New move to protect Freycinet National Park Business owners, residents and shack owners are launching the Freycinet Action Network Facebook page as an information and networking hub for people concerned about the proper management and over development of the Freycinet National Park, such as new heli-tourism and the proposed expansion of RACT’s Lodge and its construction of a high-end caravan park. As a first post, the page will publish a graphic image of the true extent of the Hodgman Government’s plans to open the Coles Bay Visitor Services Zone to new commercial leases and tourism development …

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