Tasmanian Times


Evandale mill … and the bigger picture


Could be the paranoia or cynicism that comes with another weekend ending far too quickly taking a few more brain cells with it – but one wonders the truth about the Evandale Veneer Mill being canned and where it fits in the bigger picture of Gunns Ltd.

John Gay suddenly canned the veneer plant project at Evandale and the reason given to the media was community concerns. Community concern is pretty minimal compared to that over the pulp mill.

There is more to it. If Northern Midlands Council approved the development it would definitely have been appealed, meaning months of costly work for consultants and lawyers. David Bartlett has asked (in so many words) for other sites to be looked at for the proposal, i.e. Scottsdale. In David Bartlett’s speech to the TCCI last week Here he stated that he now supports the pulp mill project. Have John Gay and David Bartlett agreed that if the veneer plant goes to Scottsdale Bartlett will support the mill?

We can assume the South Australian site was the typical “we’ll take the jobs elsewhere” threat. Economically they need the site as close to the wood supply as possible.

Gunns will probably be able to expand the operations at Evandale to a certain extent through licensing without the tricky and public development application process. The whole affair could be used for positive spin and will not be seen as separate from the greater PR battle over the pulp mill.

We shall wait and see…

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  1. Frank

    August 7, 2008 at 10:56 pm

    Spot on, 10 out of 10 Bob!

    The project was a lure, a poor one, who whould fall for that?
    Nothing needs to further explained me thinks, like water under the bridge…
    But who cares about Scottsdale and the North East, who cares for sustainable management?

  2. Bob McMahon

    August 7, 2008 at 1:42 pm

    The Evandale “proposal” always was a fishing expedition – bait the hook, throw the line in the water and see what bites. Gunns core business is the handling of public subsidies and the veneer proposal was a means of generating some.

  3. Dave Groves

    August 5, 2008 at 8:51 pm

    Plenty of room in the big bed it seems

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