John Hawkins
I then suggested to him that I would like to embark on a campaign to hire a helicopter, advise all those living in Launceston adjacent to a Public Park that I was going to spray the park with Dominex Duo. On the basis of Archer’s comments above, it would seem that only those living within 100 metres of the park need to be informed. How does the State Government view this course of action?

Subsequently I have written to the Mayor of Launceston informing him that I am willing to donate a free helicopter spraying of City Park with Dominex Duo to prevent infestation of the historic Elms with Dutch elm disease as caused by the Elm Bark Beetle a disease now found in the Elms in Fitzroy Park Melbourne. As no home is within 100 metres of the centre of the park I will not have to ask permission of the adjoining householders or rate payers, I only have to gain the approval of the land owner, namely the Launceston City Council.

Doubtless, using Mr Lee- Archer’s aforesaid expertise this will be a given, as no harm will come to anyone as the chemicals used are totally complimentary to human beings and their way of life. After all we spray the residents of rural Tasmania with gay abandon, they rarely complain, they should be so lucky.

To whom it may concern,

On the 3rd February 2009 I had lunch with Bob Loone and Peter Lee-Archer. Archer stated that he was the head of and the only employee of the Spray Information Referral Unit of DIPIWE he informed us of the following:

• Aerial spraying can take place within 100 metres of an adjoining property but the property owner has to be advised. This advice does not have to be in writing and maybe verbal.

• The spraying is conducted on behalf of the Company who owns the plantation and it is responsible for what is sprayed, in what quantity and when.

• A contractor is employed by the company for the North West of the State it is Tas Helicopters, contact Darryl Taylor of Latrobe.

• A log of what is sprayed is kept by the helicopter company together with GPS records and the quantities sprayed and in what concentration. The public are not allowed to know what is sprayed nor do they have any say in what concentration it is sprayed. This information could only be discovered under Freedom of Information but that we should note that it is not required that the company should inform the department as to when spraying takes place, nor to record the event.

• Mr Peter Lee-Archer said there were very few justified complaints to him as the head of the unit and this had resulted in the odd warning but no cases have been brought before the courts, he only became involved when complaints were made.

• With regard to drift and spraying, a maximum wind of 20km per hour is recommended beyond which spraying should not take place, but there are no written regulations.

• The insecticide used generally on plantations is Dominex Duo, levels recommended for aerial spraying as per the label, the APVMA is 250 mils per hectare with a general dilution of this quantity into 10-15 litres of water per hectare, but the volume of water is not critical and does not matter. They could spray the neat chemical but it would not get through the jets. Further Lee-Archer has no idea if this chemical is banned in other countries.

• In the three years he has been operating in his position he personally has seen no side effects from the spraying of this chemical and all investigations are his call.

• All cases that he has investigated are listed and the documents are in his office and I could apply to see them under Freedom of Information. He doubted if I would be allowed access, as there were no proven cases as to the deleterious effects of aerial spraying.

I then suggested to him that I would like to embark on a campaign to hire a helicopter, advise all those living in Launceston adjacent to a Public Park that I was going to spray the park with Dominex Duo. On the basis of Archer’s comments above, it would seem that only those living within 100 metres of the park need to be informed. How does the State Government view this course of action?

Subsequently I have written to the Mayor of Launceston informing him that I am willing to donate a free helicopter spraying of City Park with Dominex Duo to prevent infestation of the historic Elms with Dutch elm disease as caused by the Elm Bark Beetle a disease now found in the Elms in Fitzroy Park Melbourne. As no home is within 100 metres of the centre of the park I will not have to ask permission of the adjoining householders or rate payers, I only have to gain the approval of the land owner, namely the Launceston City Council.

Doubtless, using Mr Lee- Archer’s aforesaid expertise this will be a given, as no harm will come to anyone as the chemicals used are totally complimentary to human beings and their way of life. After all we spray the residents of rural Tasmania with gay abandon, they rarely complain, they should be so lucky.

John Hawkins
Chudleigh