Tasmanian Times

The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. No price is too high for the privilege of owning yourself. ~ Friedrich Nietzsche

The individual has always had to struggle to keep from being overwhelmed by the tribe. If you try it, you will be lonely often, and sometimes frightened. No price is too high for the privilege of owning yourself. ~ Friedrich Nietzsche

Environment

The trial of Michelle O’Byrne

GARRY STANNUS On this — World Environment Day — a citizens’ court puts Environment Minister Michelle O’Byrne on trial …

MICHELLE O’BYRNE … I am complaining to you in the strongest terms about the smoke that is all around Launceston. We have had it for another day again and it is unbelievably bad. Take a look out in St John St down the Tamar, or east down Paterson St and the hills. You are Minister for the Environment and you are responsible for the shocking state of affairs. This is a threat to public health and it is causing acute distress to people with respiratory problems brought on by our wretched air quality. We have a right to clean air. Please be aware that I am going to put you on trial in the court of public opinion. I will send you a statement of specific charges in the near future. (May 12, 2009).

Download charges and Minister O’Byrne’s response … mock_trial.doc

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203 Comments

203 Comments

  1. Geraldine Allan

    March 23, 2010 at 8:49 pm

    #206. That’s a cop-out answer slaked lime.

    Your response is more of the same put-down stuff, which doesn’t add dignity to you or the Minister. By continuing in your dishonourable mode, you are also further humiliating Ms. O’Byrne. Don’t you think she has done enough damage to herself without you adding to her self-inflicted injury?

    Courteously, I asked you what was to your mind, the ‘right’ process to gain remedy. That was my attempt to engage in reasonable discussion with you.

    Like Minister O’Byrne, you have avoided the inevitable, which leads me to further believe you are one of her stool pigeons. Your anonymity adds to my belief. Can’t she speak for herself? You conveniently avoid answering my question. I thus take it there is no alternative on offer than to put the Minister on public trial, which we did.

  2. slaked lime

    March 23, 2010 at 7:25 pm

    203# If all Minister O’Byrne is guilty of is refusing to see people such as you lot, then she has gone up in my estimation.

    Get it. There isn’t an alternate view. It was much ado about nothing.

  3. William Boeder

    March 23, 2010 at 6:14 pm

    Little argument can be found in the comments by Geraldine Allan, in fact it is quite a detailed and telling synopsis, of that which is considered unimportant to the ministers of the Lib/Lab- (let the forestry entities rule the land,) -world of corporate obsequiousness.
    To hell and damnation to the people of this proud State, we will e’er continue to favor the corporate realm.
    Thus I believe it to be fair, that I cast a lively pox upon this Lib/Lab coalition government.

  4. joey

    March 23, 2010 at 4:14 pm

    SL, you spent ‘time’ writing, yeh? (leave aside time spent reading in order to make an informed judgement, or was in an ill-informed one?) as did those you attack. you judge the usefulness of time spent, as i did, follow?

    again, it is not your time so to judge it as a waste is demonstrated ignorance.

  5. Geraldine Allan

    March 23, 2010 at 3:02 pm

    #202. Slaked lime, I would like to see you contribute to this thread in a more positive way. So far, your comments have been critical, without offering any alternative solutions. Now, if you are for real and not an O’Byrne stooge, put your brain where your keyboard is and tell us what you would do in this case.

    Let me remind you the trial, which you claim was a “stunt” was all about failure of Minister O’Byrne, who is responsible for overseeing the environment portfolio. In simple terms, she failed to take appropriate action to prevent smoke particle pollution. Her failure permitted serious health damage to occur.

    Please tell TT readers what your number one remedial action would be, when Minister O’Byrne refused to meet with and listen to, the persons who were suffering severe consequences of her inaction. Nobody set out to have a dogfight. But something rather than nothing, had to happen. I ask you what is your preferred “something”?

    Or, said another way, rather than criticise the public trial process we undertook when it seemed every other approach for remedy failed, please tell the readers what you would do, if you were suffering as Clive Stott described in his post #188 — Victim Impact Statement, and were denied a hearing by the Minister responsible for the cause of your agony.

    It is really exasperating to read sarcastic remarks and criticisms, yet the writer never offers an alternative solution. So, with genuine respect I ask you along with any other critics, to respond and set out any alternative method of gaining a remedy as could have been possible in the given circumstances.

    It is nonsense to say nothing was achieved by the trial. A great deal was accomplished. Those suffering the consequences of Minister O’Byrne’s inaction and refusal to meet, at least gained a hearing and public recognition of the anguish caused by the terrible situation. At most, there was full-blown disrespect publicised towards the Minister’s practice of rejecting those whom she had a duty to consider. Ms. O’Byrne has to live with that public shame and she has nobody to blame but herself, and/or her advisors.

  6. slaked lime

    March 23, 2010 at 10:11 am

    It does not follow that it is a waste of time telling you (#200) and the others that they have pathetically wasted their time. Pity you cannot see the difference.

    Something as silly as this stunt demands a comment such as 199 on the record so that when aliens visit earth from their space ship, they don’t immediately ask Scotty to beam them back up after inspecting this thread.

  7. William Boeder

    March 23, 2010 at 12:41 am

    Who are you slaked lime? #199
    Why are your comments ever in the form so similar to that of a frightened sniper running from reality?

  8. joey

    March 22, 2010 at 11:27 pm

    #199, why do you waste you time then SL? it is not your time others use, and i am sure it is a rewarding use of their time for them. as for pathetic, well….

  9. slaked lime

    March 22, 2010 at 8:19 pm

    what a pathetic waste of time

  10. Geraldine Allan

    March 22, 2010 at 7:18 pm

    #194. Mark, I refer you to the Examiner @
    http://www.examiner.com.au/news/local/news/election-2010-tasmania/wightman-waits-in-race-for-fifth-seat/1781792.aspx
    and I quote in part
    “…
    The Winnaleah principal celebrated election night at Launceston’s Sporties Hotel with Michelle O’Byrne, who was experiencing her fifth campaign at federal and state level.

    Her result was well down on four years ago, with her primary vote slipping from 14,146 to 10,670 – but she said it was a much harder campaign for her this time because of her ministerial duties and the hard decisions made by the Government during the global financial crisis.

    Ms O’Byrne said she was excited about a new Parliament…”

    What “Ministerial duties and the hard decisions made by the Government”? Mmmm, excuses, excuses. From my viewpoint, part of the decline may be more accurately blamed on lack of performance of Ministerial duties.

    If my maths are correct, to drop from 14146 votes in 2006 to 10670 is a drop in popularity of -24.57%. Also factor in that Jim Cox retired, so expectations would be that some of his sitting member votes might transfer to Ms. O’Byrne. If that is so, a fall of near 25% in popularity obviously says more to me than it does to you. Fact: The trial team did not waste their time, Ms O’Byrne did waste an opportunity of Ministerial leadership.

  11. Geraldine Allan

    March 22, 2010 at 5:43 pm

    The genesis of People’s Court of Public Opinion grew out of — (i) frustration at the failure of elected representatives to act appropriately as requested, and (ii) serious illness of some Tasmanians, perpetuated by the unreasonable failures of others. There can be no shame in ordinary people stepping in to assist their fellow human beings, when others charged with that responsibility, fail to do so.

    To my mind it is a gravely horrific situation wherein we witness certain elected representatives taping their mouths and sitting on their hands when several Tasmanians are seriously hurting. That is unacceptable by any standard, but it did and continues to, happen. The three wise monkeys are alive and well in Tasmania.

    It gets to me in a big way that politicians can readily accept being generously paid from the public purse, grab every benefit offered to them, yet not assist members of the public when it is right and necessary to do so. My standards tell me — persons fitting that category must have an underdeveloped conscience to allow themselves to act in such an insulting, reprehensible and plainly shameful, manner.

    Repeatedly, over several years, I have witnessed a number of elected representatives, (from both the Labor and Liberal parties) who have allowed themselves to be swallowed by political loyalty. Shame. That ill-perceived loyalty takes precedence over fidelity to the public — whom they are elected and duty bound to serve. The situation instanced in this trial was one such example, but in my experience it is not a stand-alone case.

    Blatant and arrogant neglect by any elected representative gets right up my nose. It is a shameful state of public affairs and, it is primarily what motivated me to become involved in the trial. I refuse to tolerate injustice of any variety. As the trial progressed and I learned more of the shabby representation and of the shocking health circumstances of both Clive Stott and Angelika Allen, I became more appalled.

    This ground-breaking example of a People of Public Opinion Court trial can be, and I hope it is, a blue-print that depicts an alternative course of action to pursue when Tasmanians find themselves wronged and trampled on by their elected representatives and it appears there is nobody else to whom they can turn for assistance. It is so very wrong that those who experience inappropriate and disloyal representation as illustrated throughout the trial have nowhere to go. It is unethical, dishonest, immoral, insulting, wide of the mark and plainly wrong, wrong, WRONG. Oh, I am yelling, I am becoming increasingly angered as I write this.

    Exposure is necessary and acceptable. To my understanding it is always reasonable to alert the public to unjust and harmful behaviour. Many before us have had to accept the unacceptable and walk away unfairly harmed and crushed. If, in the process of bringing unacceptable matters to light, persons have to be named and shamed, then so be it. In saying that, I add that in fairness, those persons firstly must be afforded an opportunity to remedy any blunder. If they refuse the opportunity, they must accept the consequences of the veto.

    Every now and again, mainstream media do a flash-in-the-pan article in an attempt to bring the matter to light. Disappointingly, more often than not, there is no substantial exposure unless a crowd of people is affected.

    With praise to Tasmania Times, citizens no longer are left in the cold. We are readily provided with a forum in which we can do the work ourselves. That is power to the people. It must be credible. Fortunately, in the trial of Ms. M O’Bryrne, those who chose to be involved were here for as long as the mission took. That is the beauty of Tasmanian Times; it is not a one-day wonder. Thanks Lindsay Tuffin.

    Finally, I truly appreciate the solidarity of all those who supported the trial process. At the commencement I knew not one of them. Yet, they were prepared to trust me, and I was willing to do what I could to assist. I was not disappointed. We had to blaze a trail on a journey for justice and that we did whilst remaining focused on the objective.

  12. Shirley Brandie

    March 22, 2010 at 2:47 pm

    Michelle O’Byrne’s lack of common sense and empathy has been well established by this court. I would hope that she follows the directions of the court and attempts to correct her mistakes.
    I also hope that she will be removed from her position as she has no right to remain if she cannot prevent harm to the people she should be protecting.
    I want to add that I was pleased to be a part of this court and feel everything was done properly as would take place in a real court room.
    Well done!!!

  13. Mark Wybourne

    March 22, 2010 at 11:15 am

    This must be why she got re-elected!

  14. Garry Stannus

    March 21, 2010 at 11:42 pm

    I’d like to say thanks to William Boeder, Geraldine Allan and Clive Stott for the privilege of being able to work with them – how they gave their time and energy unstintingly in taking the trial process to its conclusion.

    I’d also like to thank the witnesses: Clive Stott, Richard Butler, Angelika Allen, Shirley Brandy, Greenwitch00 for the evidence that they gave. This was real and graphic. I felt ashamed to read what some of these, my fellow Tasmanians, have had to endure and my desire is that all those who read their evidence, including Michelle O’Byrne, will come to understand that we all must have clean air. Air to breathe, air to enrich us, to succour us.

    I’d like to thank those that followed the progress of the trial, or commented on it. My thanks go to those also, who chose to comment while remaining anonymous and outside the trial process. My hope is that you all read the (#188) Victim Impact Statement.

    A last thank you those others un-named who have helped, and finally thanks to Lindsay and his team who have supproted this experiment in people’s justice from its inception.

    It is a terrible thing to have respiratory problems brought on by exposure to (wood)smoke. It is terrible also to experience the other grave physical and social problems that develop as a consequence of such exposure. Why are such things being done to the citizens of this state?

    Now that the Trial is closed, I invite comment.

    Thank you.

  15. Garry Stannus

    March 21, 2010 at 11:04 pm

    Garry Stannus: Court Recorder.

    The document which follows below closes the formal proceedings that constituted “The Trial of Michelle O’Byrne”.

    TRANSCRIPT OF THE SENTENCE:
    Peoples Court of Tasmania – Sentences

    PEOPLE OF TASMANIA v MICHELLE ANNE O’BYRNE 15 MARCH 2010

    COMMENTS ON PASSING SENTENCE STANNUS J

    Michelle Anne O’Byrne did not appear in Court and entered no plea to the charges of failing as Minister to discharge her obligations under the Act [EMPC 1994], of occasioning material and/or serious environmental harm and of failing to discharge her duties and honour her obligations as an elected representative of the People of Tasmania.

    As Minister for the Environment she had a responsibility to oversee the protection and enhancement of the quality of the Tasmanian environment and to prevent environmental degradation and adverse risks to human and ecosystem health. She failed to discharge that responsibility. By overseeing the regular pollution by smoke from forestry and the Parks and Wildlife Service controlled burns, she permitted potential serious or material harm to the citizens of the Tamar Valley and of the north and north-east of this state. Further, she permitted actual serious and material harm to the health of five people. Two of these people had sought meetings with her and had sought to speak with her about their concerns and had been rebuffed. They had not been able to meet with the Minister, nor to speak with her by phone. In this way she also failed to discharge her duties and obligations as an elected representative of the People of Tasmania. As Minister, she was aware of the life-threatening consequences of these controlled burns, but did nothing to prevent them.

    She was responsible for the threats to life, acute pain, discomfort, illness, medical expenses et al. and loss of environmental amenity which was occasioned on these four residents and one visitor to the state by the smoke from the controlled burns of 2008 and 2009.

    She has no prior record in this court. However, no testimonials attesting to her good character have been presented to this court and, according to the evidence presented, her work record is one of poor service to Tasmanians requiring environmental protection. I have nothing before me to suggest that the defendant may not commit a repeat of the specified offence or similar crime. Indeed, it is pubic knowledge that in this 2010 ‘burn season’ just begun, some 150 burns will be conducted. An aggravating factor, which I must consider, is that to date she has shown no remorse and is set to allow another year of environmental degradation and harm to human health from controlled burns.

    The Court of Public Opinion occupies a unique position. It seeks to meet the individual and general public need for justice, a need for justice that is not achieved by the operation of the legal system in this state. Were this matter held in the Supreme Court, she would be facing a number of sentence options including imprisonment, fines, disqualification from holding public office, community service orders, probationary orders and rehabilitation program orders. (Sentencing Act 1997) This Court of Public Opinion shares with the Supreme Court a commitment to the following purposes of sentencing: punishment and retribution, rehabilitation of offenders, deterrence of offenders and other persons from committing offences (individual deterrence; and general deterrence), denunciation of the conduct of offenders and incapacitation. However, unlike the Legal Courts, this Court of Public Opinion has no coercive power and has no links with the Police or Prison system. It is the Public itself which will carry out such sentence as is imposed by this Court.

    Ms O’Byrne, you are convicted. Orders will be made for this conviction to be recorded and for the following sentence to be imposed:

    I authorise all members of the Tasmanian Public:

    -to take such measures as they deem appropriate, provided they are legal and humane, to prevent you from the continuation of this program of smoke pollution by way of controlled-burns,

    -to use their civic powers to ensure in the forthcoming election that you are removed from your position as the Minister for the Environment,

    -to demand that you meet with Clive Stott and Angelika Allen and learn from them how you can attempt to make good the wrongs that have been done to them,

    -to demand a public apology from you on behalf of all those harmed by your derelictions of duty and to also demand from you a public statement of recognition of the harm to your victims caused by your failures.

    FINALLY this Court sentences you to be known and remembered as a Minister for the Environment who willfully failed to prevent risks to human health, thereby causing actual serious harm to the health of those you were required to act on behalf of – the members of the Tasmanian Public.

  16. Russell

    March 16, 2010 at 2:35 pm

    Devonport, Railton and everywhere between there and Kimberley were today shrouded in a thick, stinking, ash-filled smog haze.

    Why aren’t the FT polluters before the courts as would be anyone else if their wood heater smoked longer than 15 minutes?

    That aside, thanks FT for reminding us who you represent just before 20th March 2010.

  17. Garry Stannus

    March 16, 2010 at 1:21 pm

    Obviously Michelle is fiddling while Tasmania burns … again. Launceston covered in smoke last night from controlled burns and this morning all of Lilydale covered in smoke. School students complaining — threat to everyone’s health — asthmatics have nowhere to hide.

  18. Geraldine Allan

    March 11, 2010 at 4:57 pm

    …/Cont

    I have also suffered emotional or psychological harm
    There is continued aggravation for me as the needless burning continues. I feel distress for others as well.

    It bothers me immensely to be locked up in my own home for months at a time, not being able to breathe, or open a window to get fresh air when there isn’t any, and having to live and breathe the choking stench inside that permeates clothing, bedding, and in fact all soft furnishings. To me, it is scandalous and criminal. The fine particle pollution gets in my hair, my nose, lungs and blood stream. The smell is soon as bad inside the home as it is outside, and this smoke is toxic. It is all so very, very wicked and yet was apparently wholly acceptable to Environment Minister Michelle O’Byrne MHA. That is sickening.

    Additionally I have had financial loss inflicted on me
    There has been a significant financial drain for me since I became ill. I am keeping a diary of expenses and some of the figures can be accessed from within http://www.cleanairtas.com/couldyou.htm.

    These figure are by no means the true total cost. There are all the telephone calls, prescription and non prescription medications, vehicle running costs plus added maintenance, and having to pay people to undertake work for me that I could have previously performed myself.

    The costs are never ending
    There is always the constant worry of added costs.

    The loss incurred by me as a result of all this keeps rising. The costs keep on coming in even when the smoke might stop for a little while or blows in another direction. The costs to the public health system are significant but are usually ignored or hidden.
    Being smoked out is a big price to pay.

    Denial and no accountability
    There has been no let up and there was nobody responsible that I could discuss the matter with. I found the minister’s advisor, Mr. Brad Arkell, to be a smart-alec and alarmingly — totally unsympathetic. The responsible minister, Ms. Michelle O’Byrne MHA, was anything but responsible. She has refused to talk or meet with me despite my many requests and even so with her electorate office only 15 minutes away. She is well aware of what has happened to me and others as a result of this planned burn smoke. That to my understanding is scandalous and dishonorable, at the very least.

    My ongoing frustrations
    On occasions I have had to cancel both doctor and specialist appointments because the smoke was too bad for me at their locations.

    I do not want to be on heaps and heaps of drugs because of somebody else’s residue.

    To think that laws can be made to stop people smoking in the Mall when all of Tasmania is being smoked out in such horrific concentrations is mind-boggling. To put it into perspective, in 2008 the total particle emissions to the Tasmanian airshed from heavy-fuel forestry industry planned burns alone, was estimated by the EPA to have been in the range of 86,000 to 120, 000 tonnes of particles after consuming 7.2 million tonnes of wood. This is an awful lot of cigarettes. I did not want to inhale this smoke and I asked the Environment Division to use their powers to stop it. They were not even interested in listening.

    Political and other concern non apparent
    I have become disillusioned with the two major political parties, whereas I was once interested in politics. They refuse to stop the smoke at the source and it upsets me the Asthma Foundation in Tasmania will not lobby, even for our children’s sake, to stop the smoke at the source. It troubles me that they know the health damage it is causing to the population and yet they allow this pollution to continue, despite Tasmania having the highest rates of asthma and cancer (non skin cancer) in the country.

    I, and everyone else, am suffering because of this orchestrated pollution and the EPA has not prosecuted anyone to date for an air quality breach, and there have been many such breaches. This of course plays on one’s mind.

    As I said earlier in this statement it is all so very, very wicked and yet apparently wholly acceptable to Minister Michelle O’Byrne MHA.

    How ongoing daily life now has to be for me
    My health will never return to how it was before this pernicious planned burn smoke took over, and continues to take over, our state. That on its own is an atrocity as a result of an act of environmental violence immorally and illegally forced on me, and others.

    I declare this statement is true.
    Clive Malcolm STOTT

    Date: 12th March 2010

    That completes the Prosecution’s pre-sentencing comments, your Honour.

  19. Geraldine Allan

    March 11, 2010 at 4:53 pm

    VICTIM IMPACT STATEMENT

    I, Clive Malcolm STOTT, have suffered grave, life-threatening physical injuries.

    Injuries suffered
    In March/April 2008 I suffered episodes of a runny nose, sinus pain, headaches, blocked ears, raspy voice, tightness in the chest, infection, shortness of breath, and asthma when I could not escape the planned burn smoke

    As this pollution worsened my condition turned into severe asthma. It got to the stage all I could do was sit in a chair and not move. I felt I was suffocating. If I tried to lie down I could not breathe at all. I could feel my heart thumping right throughout my whole body. Airflow from my lungs had reduced significantly according to my monitoring equipment.

    This went on for weeks as I sat propped up in a chair trying to maintain life, and trying to avoid the smoke that was seeping into the house.
    I developed clots in my left ankle, calf, behind the knee, and in the groin. I developed a below-the-knee deep vein thrombosis (DVT) in the left leg. Parts of it broke away and passed through my heart and into both lungs.

    The subsequent pain suffered as a result of the injuries
    My breathing deteriorated further. The pain in my chest was unbearable. I thought my head and lungs would burst and that my body wouldn’t be able to take any more and give up. Many times I thought I would die.

    It was extremely distressing physically for me to get to hospital while I was in pain and couldn’t breathe. I had to endure IV cannulas for drugs and blood tests, and needles into arteries to measure arterial blood gasses (ABG’s). This was an extremely painful procedure, especially when I was at my lowest level.

    I was required to blow for as long and as hard, as I could into an instrument called a spirometer. I found this really distressing in my condition and it caused me real discomfort. On top of this, I had to inject myself in the stomach.

    I likened the clots in my leg to having a tourniquet tightened around the upper part of my leg all day and night. The swelling and pain from the DVT in my left leg was excruciating. I could not put a shoe on or walk very far without having to sit and elevate my leg for long periods of time. Just to have the ultrasound probe pushed along the leg and pressed hard on the vein for an ‘exposure’ was extremely painful.

    Pain management and medication
    For me to have to sit upright for extended periods whilst nuclear scans were done on my chest wasn’t easy.

    I had more trips to hospital for pain management.

    The asthma medications made me ‘hyped’ until I was almost out of my brain and I was sleep deprived all this time, dozing for just two hours most days.

    In 2008, and in 2009 during the burn season, I was on higher levels of asthma preventers, relievers and oxygen. I was on every prescription medication that my doctors and specialists could prescribe to me. At times when I was desperately ill, I had to take doses at much shorter intervals than recommended, and was on life support oxygen.

    At present I am reasonably well because the air is clearer as I write this. My breathing is not as bad but I find I have to start taking additional medication because my sensitivity to smoke and other triggers has increased markedly after repeated exposure and bad episodes.

    I am required to take blood thinning medication now for the rest of my life, and have had visits to specialists to discuss the discomfort and risk associated with my thrombosed leg.

    How the injuries impacted on my daily life, and continue to do so
    My life is different now to what it was before these smoke events.

    I am required to take higher than normal doses of blood thinners. My readings are hard to stabilize. I am required to give up a lot of my time to attend doctors and specialists. I have to constantly try to keep my dosage in range because if it is too low I could clot, and if it is too high I could bleed to death. These medications are affected by certain foods so I have to now watch closely what I eat. I have to be extremely careful not to sustain a physical injury because I could bleed internally or externally. I am pretty much a hemophiliac these days. If I need to have dental treatment or surgery I have to alter my medication regime well in advance.

    These are all additional to the breathing problems and something I don’t really need.

    I have to wear a respirator mask now when there is a hint of smoke about and I have found I am now susceptible to more triggers after these serious, deliberate environmental fumigations.

    …/Cont

  20. Geraldine Allan

    March 11, 2010 at 4:41 pm

    THE COURT OF THE PEOPLE OF PUBLIC OPINION
    The Queen for The People Of Tasmania
    v
    Minister Michelle Anne O’BYRNE, MHA

    Prosecution pre-sentence comments

    Thank-you your Honour. I do not intend to take up much of the court time. The defendant, Ms. Michelle Anne O’BYRNE has been found guilt of the charges as listed.

    Your Honour, it is the prosecution’s claim that Minister O’BYRNE was in a position of power and she abused that power. The Tasmanian citizens trusted environmental control to her care and she abused that trust. She failed to honour her duty of care, and that is a most serious error of judgment, which had nasty outcomes.

    There can be no more important objective for State Government and its ministers, than to firmly protect the safety of its citizens. An appropriate system of fair dealing with suitable penalties in this court’s justice system is essential to ensuring that objective. One of the aims of this court is to assist those Tasmanians who have been denied their due entitlement of proper access to and action by. elected representatives.

    Any sentence you impose is beyond my control your Honour, but Tasmanians will get comfort from the knowledge that elected persons acting inappropriately can be brought to account in this their very own public court.

    I summarise adequate punishment as preventing crime using deterrents, protecting the community, promoting rehabilitation of the offender, making the offender accountable, denouncing the conduct of the offender and recognising the harm done to the victim.

    Thus, your Honour, I urge you to impose a sensible sentence that will include an apology for the harm done to the victims. If it is your intention to include a parole period in the sentence, I encourage you to mandate that must only apply to any period of public shame, if the defendant provides the abovementioned apology.

    There is no need for me to comment further since Mr. Clive STOTT has prepared a Victim Impact Statement (VIS), which I will table following these remarks. A VIS is broadly regarded as a statement that provides details to the court of the harm suffered by a victim resulting from the offence.

    If it please your Honour.

  21. gianni.fratelli

    March 11, 2010 at 3:59 pm

    Ciao e tutti, I read this transcript with a sense of humor and notice, e it is stupido !! No surprise. I understand from cousin mia that you have election soon. So a question for the judge e jury etc, what a happen when or if the minister looses her seat or if she e get a new portfolio. I suppose the trial will fall over then ???

    Ah why bother, I think e time for some pasta e, vino rose e buono notte, ciao ciao

  22. thebeak

    March 11, 2010 at 3:12 pm

    Michelle O’Byrne is looking like groucho marx; what are we running here a freak show. between her and her brother eddie munster ( David O’byrne ); come on labor get it right

  23. slaked lime

    March 11, 2010 at 10:39 am

    Hells bells, are thease guys crazy or what?

  24. Red Bob

    March 11, 2010 at 12:55 am

    Five trials Geraldine? Yeah, about par with me. Yours’ sound much more interesting!

    Obviously if a court needs to be brought to order then you will hear the word, but in this context? It’s just silly really. And, yes, a little pedantic for me to even comment upon it.

    I read the transcript of one of those cases you are refering to. Sounds like a harrowing experience to be in court for that – let alone to be the victim. I’m pleased the offenders were justly dealt with by the courts.

  25. Ian Rist

    March 11, 2010 at 12:04 am

    Fact Red Bob, maybe you have only changed departments. Same Red bob different job description.

  26. Geraldine Allan

    March 10, 2010 at 11:30 pm

    Red Bob #179, I have no idea what your courtroom observer experience is, but from my viewpoint you have not been where I have been, nor observed as I have.

    I have sat on 3 juries, and have been an almost full time observer though an abduction and rape trial, and a full time observer through a death by dangerous driving trial.

    In those experiences/observations, I noted that the courtroom gallery were brought to order on several occasions, particularly towards the end of trial, and more especially when judgment was brought down. Sentencing was another story on its own, with court security being visible in plentiful supply and the judge threatened on more than one occasion to clear the courtroom unless there was immediate silence and court respect.

    Then there was the outside court fiasco to deal with. I ducked for cover around the side of the Supreme Court. Even the females were into it, handbags ‘n all.

    Recognised Court Observer

  27. Red Bob

    March 10, 2010 at 10:46 pm

    Re 179, broken record Ian, broken record.

  28. Ian Rist

    March 10, 2010 at 10:21 pm

    You seem to be avoiding the fox issue lately Red Bob (redbananas1928@hotmail.com)…

  29. Red Bob

    March 10, 2010 at 9:39 pm

    Garry, they do not shout `order’ at every stage in court. Maybe you should have gone and observed a court in action before conducting your mock trial.

    I must say I’ll be interested to see the sentence . . .

    I hope you write a letter or email to Ms O’Byrne so she knows of the outcome and the sentence. I would imagine she would get a kick out of that.

  30. Garry Stannus

    March 10, 2010 at 9:16 pm

    [Garry Stannus: Judge, Court of Public Opinion.]
    ORDER! [‘The defendant will rise’]:
    Michelle Anne O’Byrne, you have been found guilty of the following charges:

    1. Failing to discharge your obligations as minister under the Act [Environmental Management and Pollution Control Act 1994 (N0. 44 of 1994)] and with occasioning material and/or serious environmental harm to CLIVE STOTT and RICHARD BUTLER, both of the Tamar Valley, by continuing to allow/promote, despite continued requests, various planned burns across Tasmania and pernicious smoke in and around the Tamar valley.

    2. Failing to discharge your duties and honour your obligations as so sworn in the House of Assembly, as an elected representative of the People of Tasmania.
    The Court will now consider sentencing submissions. Michelle Anne O’Byrne, you have been found guilty of the above charges. Is there anything you wish to say before sentence is passed on you?

    Counsel, please prepare your sentencing submissions.

    ORDER!
    [submissions to bear the full name of the sender]

  31. Garry Stannus

    March 10, 2010 at 8:35 pm

    Garry Stannus – Court Recorder:

    The following document is accepted into the record of Trial proceedings:

    “People of Tasmania v O’Byrne: The Judgement”
    Judgement.pdf (http://oldtt.pixelkey.biz/images/uploads/Judgement.pdf)

  32. William Boeder

    March 10, 2010 at 8:25 pm

    Well Red Bob, Unfortunately, you have only presented that of which this Court required so little of, that of being the part accorded to and acting the role of, the ignorant public sector.

  33. Blair Trumpet

    March 10, 2010 at 8:17 pm

    Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

  34. Red Bob

    March 10, 2010 at 11:24 am

    Well, let’s all be pleased this waste of bandwidth is over.

    I did find amusing the participants’ woeful lack of knowledge of what goes on in our courts though. Constantly shouting `ORDER’ – just doesn’t happen.

  35. Garry Stannus

    March 5, 2010 at 4:44 pm

    Cont/…
    DECISION:
    The Court declares the accused, Michelle O’Byrne, to be a defaulting defendant, and will accordingly move to judgement in default of appearance.

    The Court thanks the members of the jury who attended this Court and expresses its disappointment that through the non-appearance of the accused, and the lack of any defence, that there is no contested evidence which a jury might examine. Thank you for your consideration and for your time. The Court of Public Opinion notes that jury members may still express opinions though the public comment section of the Trial pages, and welcomes any comments. However, again the Court thanks you for your attendance, and now discharges you from further duties.

    Regarding that part of the Prosecution’s application – that the Court finds for the case of the prosecution – the Court reserves its judgement.

    In the Trial of Michelle O’Byrne, the Minister is charged with:
    “Failing to discharge her obligations as minister under the Act [Environmental Management and Pollution Control Act 1994 (N0. 44 of 1994)] and with occasioning material and/or serious environmental harm to CLIVE STOTT and RICHARD BUTLER, both of the Tamar Valley, by continuing to allow/promote, despite continued requests, various planned burns across Tasmania and pernicious smoke in and around the Tamar valley” and secondly,
    “Failing to discharge her duties and honour her obligations as so sworn in the House of Assembly, as an elected representative of the People of Tasmania.”

    ORDER!
    THE COURT IS NOW ADJOURNED.
    Garry Stannus – JUDGE

  36. Garry Stannus

    March 5, 2010 at 4:42 pm

    Garry Stannus – JUDGE
    ORDER! ORDER!
    The Prosecution has made application that owing to defendant O’BYRNE MHA being in default, the Court immediately proceed to a judgment, finding for the case of the prosecution.

    The Prosecutor, Geraldine Allan, is relying on the Rules of the Supreme Court of Tasmania to underpin her application to have the defendant regarded as being in default and have the Court proceed to judgement. Moreover, the first of the defendant’s charges is in regard to the State of Tasmania’s Environmental Management and Pollution Control Act 1994. This Court of Public Opinion seeks to work within the existing framework of law, and has in this trial, sought where possible, to observe some of the broader forms of legal practice. It cannot mirror actual legal practice, for example, it cannot subpoena witnesses.

    The Prosecution, in its motion, has asked the Court to move to judgement, for reason of the defendant being in default due to non-appearance. The Court sees before it two questions to decide. The first is whether to such an application is properly made and can be granted and, depending on this, secondly, whether the prosecution’s motion for judgement interferes with an accused’s right to trial by jury.

    1 The Prosecution in supporting its application, cites the Rules of the Supreme Court of Tasmania of which Division 2 allows for judgements in default of appearance or pleading. The Court notes that Rule 353 (1) authorises the Court to “give any judgment on the statement of claim to which the plaintiff is entitled against a defaulting defendant”. While it can be argued that this Rule is used for civil matters, given the extra-legal status of the People’s Court of Public Opinion, the power to have the accused brought into court is lacking, and it is the Court’s opinion that Rule 353 (1) can be used in these proceedings to apply to matters criminal. The term ‘criminal’ is used because it is noted that while an offence of nuisance is under the Environment Management and Pollution Control Act 1994, defined in s140 of the EMPCA it is also noted that the EMPCA itself (s50) provides for penalties of both fines and/or imprisonment of up to four years. The Court accepts the validity of the Prosecution’s claim that the defendant, having been served a writ, is in default by virtue of her non-appearance in this court. The Court also accepts that the defendant has been given fair opportunity to present a defence.

    2 Of serious concern to the Court however is the proposition that the Court itself moves to judgement in the absence of a jury. The Court notes that s80 of the Australian Constitution provides that trials on indictment shall be by jury, and though this has no jurisdiction to matters within the state of Tasmania, it does express the common sentiment that juries are necessary to determine the facts, that is for judges to decide the law.
    What then does Tasmanian law say on this issue? The right to trial by jury is enshrined in the Supreme Court Civil Procedure Act 1932 (s33). Yet s29 indicates that in certain instances, trials can be held without juries – indicating that parties can choose to forgo such a right. The Juries Act 2003 s41, gives a Court the authority to discharge a jury ‘in the interest of justice’ at any stage in a trial. Further, s5 (3) of the Criminal Code Act 1924 suggests that the right to jury trial has to be activated by application from the defendant. In the case of a Supreme Court criminal trial, this Court of Public Opinion recognises the right to trial by jury comes into play when the defendant contests the charges against them. This is usually associated with a plea of ‘Not Guilty’. Where there is no appearance by a defendant, and in this case, no rejection of claims of matters of fact, the Court is of the view that being no contested evidence, there is no role for the jury. The Rules of the Supreme Court of Tasmania s557, recognise the right, with some exceptions, that parties to a proceedings have to a trial by jury. Yet the same Rules, s570, provide that in the event of absence of a party from a trial, the applicant “may prove the claim against that defendant…” The Courts accepts the view of the prosecution that where a respondent party to a proceeding in this Court is by virtue of non-appearance deemed to be in default, that the claims as made by the plaintiff (prosecution) by default stand proven and that the Court move to judgement.
    …/Cont

  37. Geraldine Allan

    March 4, 2010 at 3:46 pm

    With respect your Honour, further to the court recorder’s post #169, I consider it important that the comments transcript indicate here the general order of the Prosecution motion, which you have retired to chambers to consider.

    A few days ago, I submitted the MOTION for default, and for the People’s Court of Public Opinion to proceed directly to judgment for the prosecution. This can be viewed in full @ http://oldtt.pixelkey.biz/index.php?/P20/

    The order of presentation of MOTION headers are: –
    1. The MOTION

    2. Recap on How The PCOPO Prosecution Got To Here
    The Role Of Prosecutor In This Trial
    These tests must be applied in every case. They are: –
    1. The evidential test
    2. The public interest test

    3. Rationale — Further Justification for the MOTION
    Question 1: What is default?
    Answer: A defaulting defendant means a defendant who does not –
    (a) appear to a writ within the period required by these rules; or
    (b) file and deliver a defence within the period required by these rules.

    Question 2: Is the defendant in default?
    Answer: Clearly, the defendant is in default by
    (i) Her non-appearance in this court, and
    (ii) The absence of appearance of any defence (representative) counsel.

    4. Has the Defendant been afforded Fair Opportunity?
    Question: Has the defendant been given a fair opportunity
    to present a defence?
    Answer: Yes.

    5. Does the Defendant have a fair chance of success?
    Question: Is there a case that the defendant may have reasonable prospects of success?
    Answer: None at all, because no defence case has been presented to this court.

    6. The Jury
    Question: Why by-pass the jury process?
    Answer: Reasons set out below.

    7. Immediate Judgment
    Question: Why bring about a judgment now?
    Answer: Your Honour, immediately proceeding to judgment is the most equitable, appropriate and practical way forward.

    8. Evidence
    Question: What evidence must the court now consider?
    Answer: By default of the defendant it is my submission that the case for the prosecution must stand, unless extremely doubtful.

    9. Challenge to Evidence
    Question: Was evidence for the prosecution challenged through the court?
    Answer: Absolutely Not.

    10. Questions for Your Honour to decide
    Question: Precisely what must your Honour decide?
    Answer:
    (i) Whether or not the prosecution case presents a genuine case of material fact,
    (ii) If the defence has no reasonable prospect of successfully defending the action.

    11. The Charges as Amended
    For completeness your Honour I restate the charges upon which I ask you to bring down a judgment …

    12. Environmental Injustice Has Occurred

    13. Summing up
    Question: Is it reasonable to proceed to judgment for the prosecution?
    Answer: Yes.

    14. This Trial Has Been All About Being Fair, Fearless and Effective

    15. Final thoughts —
    1. Extract from MICHELLE O’BYRNE MHA maiden (Address In Reply) speech 18/03/06: –
    2. Mission statement

    If it please your Honour.

    Geraldine Allan for this, the People’s Prosecution

  38. Garry Stannus

    March 2, 2010 at 9:28 pm

    Addition to the COURT RECORD:

    RESUMPTION OF THE COURT OF THE PEOPLE OF TASMANIA
    Prosecution MOTION to Proceed Directly to Judgement (Defendant O”BYRNE in default)

    SUMMARY OF PROSECUTION MOTION:
    In a surprise development at the re-convened proceedings in the Trial of Michelle O’Byrne in the Court of Public Opinion before Trial Judge Garry Stannus J, People’s Prosecutor Geraldine Allan has requested the Court move to judgement.

    Prosecutor Allan, citing the defendant’s non-appearance in Court and failure to appoint a Defence Counsel, has in effect moved to dismiss the jury from the case and has moved that in place of the jury, the Court judges the case itself.

    Prosecutor Allan’s motion can be viewed here: Download ‘MP Motion.doc’ at http://oldtt.pixelkey.biz/index.php?/P20/

    This “MP Motion Document” now forms part of the Record of the Trial of Michelle O’Byrne.

    – Garry Stannus
    Court Recorder

  39. William Boeder

    March 1, 2010 at 11:50 pm

    I am sympathetic to the reactive writings of Blair Trumpet #166, in that the comments so contributed suggest little more than a frenzied desire to be noticed.

  40. Blair Trumpet

    March 1, 2010 at 11:22 pm

    Please, can you not spare us.

    You people are even responding to yourselves!

    No defence, just a kangaroo court with people giving themselves titles and acting with all the 18th century pomp of a bewigged lawyer.

    Spare the rest of us … Pretty please?

  41. Geraldine Allan

    March 1, 2010 at 12:07 pm

    #162. Your Honour, thank you for those kind remarks. Yes, it has been a much longer than expected recovery, and I do apologise for the inconvenience and delay caused to this court trial.

    Nonetheless, I am back, and yes I am ready to proceed. As prosecutor, I intend to follow this with my rather lengthy and I hope final address in this court today.

    Of necessity, it is in download format, and will be linked back to this trial comment thread. No doubt the court recorder will attend to the requirements, in order that the trial transcript reflects this mentioned prosecution action.

    Geraldine Allan,
    People’s Prosecutor in the Court of Public Opinion Trial of MICHELLE ANNE O’BYRNE MHA

  42. Geraldine Allan

    February 28, 2010 at 11:19 pm

    A Allen — Correction to the post @ #160.
    I had some difficulty when I tried to access the links you nominate at the beginning of your post that are listed as: –
    § Launc_PM_2.5_Exceedences__Patersonia_Pollution_.doc
    § QAT_Update_June_2009.doc
    § 12_May_North_East_Tasmania_avoidable_Pollution_final.doc
    § Why_Air_Pollution_is_an_issue_in_Tasmania_9-9-09.doc

    It then occurred to me if I deleted the § at the beginning of each one, the link opened without any problem. So these are the amended links: –
    Launc_PM_2.5_Exceedences__Patersonia_Pollution_.doc
    QAT_Update_June_2009.doc
    12_May_North_East_Tasmania_avoidable_Pollution_final.doc
    Why_Air_Pollution_is_an_issue_in_Tasmania_9-9-09.doc

    Geraldine Allan
    Increasingly Interested & Learning Observer,
    Court of Public Opinion Gallery

  43. Geraldine Allan

    February 28, 2010 at 11:13 am

    re post #160
    I find your article Smokewatch — Anji
 28.02.10 11:55 am appearing yesterday in TT@
    http://oldtt.pixelkey.biz/index.php/news-views-cartoons/
    additionally informative. For those of us who are not affected, Particle Pollution is a difficult subject to comprehend.

    For those of you who suffer serious health problems as a result of smoke particle pollution, daily life must be a painful and hard slog at times. I admire the way you push on, trying to educate those of us who, before you drew our attention to the frightening facts, thought it was just SMOKE.

    Geraldine Allan
    Increasingly Interested & Learning Observer,
    Court of Public Opinion Gallery

  44. Garry Stannus

    February 28, 2010 at 8:34 am

    THE TASMANIAN COURT OF PUBLIC OPINION IS AGAIN IS SESSION. THE TRIAL OF MICHELLE O’BYRNE CONTINUES.

    ORDER!
    The Court appreciates the evidence given above, and thanks Mrs Allen for her attendace in the Court, and for the testimony that she has given. Let her testimony and those documents contained in the links supplied by Mrs Allen be accepted into the Court record.

    A number of other matters need canvassing. The Court notes that:

    1. Despite the delivery of documents of notification of these proceedings to the accused at her premises, Michelle O’Byrne has failed to appear in Court, has failed to answer the charges against her, and has not requested legal representation.

    2. Despite repeated requests, no citizen member of the public has been found willing to present evidence on the accused’s behalf.

    3. Despite repeated requests, no person has come forward to act as Counsel for the accused.

    THE COURT FURTHER NOTES THAT:
    4. There have occurred a number of attempts to besmirch the integrity of the Court by some who fancy that by not revealing their names, that their identities remain unknown. The Court refers to a number of comments by persons using ‘pen-names’, which at times have been derogatory, ie: ‘Blair Trumpet’ ‘Fair Strumpet’, ‘Dave’ ‘Red Bob’ and ‘Fletch’

    5. The Court finds however that the attempt by Dave [Comment 84] to direct the Court, dismiss the jury, drop the charges and close the case is a very serious matter, and one which this Court will not countenance.

    THEREFORE
    LET ‘Dave’ and any other would-be miscreants be warned, any such repeat of this behaviour will be dealt with by this Court of Public Opinion.

    AND NOW
    The Court is ready to hear from Counsel. Madame Prosecutor, welcome back to our Court. We missed your learned presence and the corridors without seemed that much gloomier for your absence within. I see that you are yet not accompanied by Counsel for the accused – regrettable. However, are you ready to proceed?

    -posted by Garry Stannus, Judge, Court of Public Opinion

  45. William Boeder

    February 28, 2010 at 3:41 am

    Why has this harmful and destructive forestry industry been given the licence to place itself and its health damaging activities so well above and beyond the laws of the land?
    Further to the recalcitrant serial offending entities of Gunns Ltd and Forestry Tasmania, the secrecy and defences given by this government, to this destructive industry, is seen and understood to be an excessive blight upon the whole of Tasmania.
    A letter to the Tasmanian Greens may precipitate the introduction of the appropriate legislation to remove the cloak of secret, covert conducts and activities from the offensive overlords and present State government body of ministers?

    A letter bearing this request will soon find its way to Greens Leader Nick McKim.

  46. A Allen

    February 27, 2010 at 9:46 pm

    On 9th September 2009, I submitted an extensive article in Tasmanian Times headed Quality Air Tasmania. It can be found @
    http://oldtt.pixelkey.biz/index.php?/article/quality-air-tasmania/
    wherein I provided the following links for an even greater grasp of the situation.
    § Launc_PM_2.5_Exceedences__Patersonia_Pollution_.doc
    § QAT_Update_June_2009.doc
    § 12_May_North_East_Tasmania_avoidable_Pollution_final.doc
    § Why_Air_Pollution_is_an_issue_in_Tasmania_9-9-09.doc

    I now wish to add further witness evidence to the trial of Ms. Michelle O’Byrne MHA.

    Briefly, I live in Patersonia and have done so for the last 15 years. Patersonia is a small rural valley between Mt Arthur and Mt Barrow. It had mostly farms dotted with a few houses until a few years ago when there began a massive increase in native logging and plantations accompanied by an massive increase in logging burn off smoke

    A couple of autumns ago Mr Clive Stott rang me after he saw me in The Examiner wearing a gas mask due to logging burn off smoke.

    I support Clive in his quest to ban logging burn off smoke due to the damaging health effects of this passive smoking. Michelle O’Byrne MHA advisor, Brad Arkell, promised me an appointment with her to discuss the Patersonia logging smoke problem, but she reneged.

    Despite several requests from my husband and I over the last couple of years, Ms O’Byrne has refused to meet or even speak over the phone, with either of us over this air issue. I consider she has therefore been evasive and dismissive of her responsibilities as Environment Minister. I am surprised and extremely disappointed that she has gone to such great lengths to also ignore Clive Stott’s serious health impacts. Clive deserves to be given the respect to be heard. He was very sick and given that Michelle O’Byrne was in a position to have influence over the smoke situation, it was heartless of her to refuse to see him.

    Her published strategy is not to reduce logging smoke but to continue to let burners burn (Department of Environment says that industry burners were not obliged to follow the bids issued by the FPA in 2009), attempting to only “reduce impacts of smoke”. Under this strategy Minister O’Byrne allowed Launceston to have 13/18 consecutive days of exceedence( standard and levels) due to the government allowing industry to burn in winter when winds were blowing towards civilisation. (Smokewatch 2009)

    A previous witness in this trial referred to as “the wide scale use of fire as a land management tool in Tasmania”. My family has been personally affected by this pollution. Industrial burning is anti-health and pro-pollution and is replaceable with clean technologies like those used in Canada. The Kent Group National Parks in Tasmania rely primarily on lightning strikes for land management and almost all of the offensive burning that occurs in rural Tasmania is from forestry logging burn offs.

    Over the last few years, these excessive burns have caused me to have respiratory and smoke sensitivity problems, which I have never had before. My daughter also had her first recurrence of asthma symptoms (since she was a baby living in Launceston) during the same year that I was affected by smoke. After completing the Patersonia Smoke Diary in 2008, I discovered that Patersonia had shared many of the exceedences (recorded by the Environment Department) in Launceston for the previous 18 months.

    However, for 12 years prior to this time, smoke had never been a problem in Patersonia, even when we had a bushfire. It certainly did not leave any permanent health problems until 2008 when forestry burnt logging burns 360 degrees around Patersonia over many months with a pattern of exceedences confirmed by Dr Bicevskis.

    Until 2007 I had not needed to evacuate my home due to adverse distress from the forestry burn season smoke.

    Logging burn offs are not land management but industry forcing the public to smoke passively to the peril of our health and lifestyle.

  47. Garry Stannus

    February 17, 2010 at 2:49 pm

    Garry Stannus: Court Recorder
    The following document is entered into the court record:
    “A PUBLIC ADDRESS from the COURT OF PUBLIC OPINION”
    This document contains some information on the circumstance which led to the commencement of these Trial proceedings, and it also presents links to the evidence given during the course of the Trial.
    It can be accessed via the following web address:
    http://oldtt.pixelkey.biz/index.php?/weblog/article/the-trial-of-michelle-obyrne-a-public-address/

    G. Stannus
    Court of Public Opinion

  48. Blair Trumpet

    February 15, 2010 at 1:49 pm

    It’s the pathetic apeing of the pomp and ceremony of the courts system that baffles me.

    If these people don’t want to accept the decision of the ‘authorities’ then why ape their institutions?

    And why is no-one allowed to speak in M O’B’s defence?

    Which is it? Use the rules of the courts or ignore them?

    Please spare us this travesty people.

  49. Red Bob

    February 15, 2010 at 12:36 am

    Yep, I’ve been saying for ages this is a waste of bandwidth. Does anyone think Michelle O’Byrne cares?

  50. Fletch

    February 15, 2010 at 12:10 am

    No way, dont get rid of it, its hilarious.

    This is a classic, prattling on about a REAL trial. All you’ve managed to do is blow smoke up your own asses : )

    Once again we see truth in ‘The only true wilderness is the space between a greenies ears’

    And just spotted another classic, you call yourself the Tasmanian Times, yet your post times appear in QLD time, where are you located really????

  51. Dave

    February 14, 2010 at 7:09 pm

    Hear hear, what a lot of crock once again. It seriously is about time that the TT pulled this one off as it is such a lot of hot air and deserves no space here on the pages.

  52. Blair Trumpet

    January 26, 2010 at 1:44 pm

    Not this again.

    You pretend to be a part of a system that has produced and protects the likes of Michelle O’Byrne yet deny her, or her advocates, any right of response or defense.

    If you want to play judge, jury and executioner, must you inflict it on the rest of us?

  53. Garry Stannus

    January 26, 2010 at 1:38 pm

    Public Notice:
    Trial of Michelle O’Byrne, in the Court of Public Opinion

    A ‘MOCK TRIAL’ of the Minister for Environment, Parks and Heritage, Michelle O’Byrne, was commenced in June of last year, 2009.

    It continued, hearing evidence, till September, when the Court Prosecutor, Mrs Geraldine Allan, sought an adjournment to allow her to travel interstate. This application was granted. However, while in Victoria, Geraldine had a very unfortunate accident, and has had to slowly fight her way back to mobility and, in the case of the ‘Trial’, to be able to return to the keyboard as Prosecutor. This has taken some months, and we are very glad to announce that she is now sufficiently restored to be in a position to resume her prosecutorial duties in our Court of Public Opinion.

    With the opening of the Court of Public Opinion Legal Year, the Trial is about to resume … please expect further Trial posts onto TT in the near future.

    Garry Stannus
    Court Recorder.

  54. Garry Stannus

    October 10, 2009 at 12:14 pm

    [Court Recorder]
    The Court of Public Opinion has received advice from our Prosecutor’s Office. Mrs Geraldine Allan, our Court Prosecutor, has as a result of mishap, sustained an injury which will prevent her for some weeks from resuming her prosecution of the proceedings against the defendant, Minister Michelle O’Byrne.
    The Court will further advise participants when more details come to hand and when a date for the resumption of proceedings becomes known.
    On behalf of all its participants and members of the Public Gallery, the Court of Public Opinion wishes Geraldine a speedy and successful recovery. She is in our thoughts.

  55. Garry Stannus

    September 27, 2009 at 9:16 pm

    JUDGE:
    Madam Prosecutor,
    I thank you for your request. Let me respond by reminding members and observers in this Court, that this is the Court of Public Opinion. Let me remind all those within and without the Court that what is sought here is JUSTICE – by the people, for the people and of the people.

    No monies change hands in this Court, no careers advanced, no privilege accorded. This is a people’s Court, run by the people, for the people and of the people.

    Madam Prosecutor,
    this Trial, about to enter its fifth month, has as its purpose, the hearing of the charges that have been brought against the Minister. The Court recognises that a People’s Court is beholden to the needs of the People, and in recognition of the service already performed by you, as ‘Citizen Prosecutor’, is inclined to grant an adjournment for the period as requested.

    Does any member of the Court, be it on the Bench, Jury or sitting in the gallery, have something to say on this adjournment request?

  56. Geraldine Allan

    September 27, 2009 at 4:08 pm

    Thank-you your Honour. Once again during this trial, I wish to seek your indulgence.

    Due to circumstances which require me to be interstate until 8th October 2009, I am therefore unavailable for this Court from 30th September 2009.

    I thus request your acquiescence in granting this prosecutor leave of court attendance during that specific timeframe.

    If it please your Honour.

  57. Garry Stannus

    September 27, 2009 at 11:36 am

    JUDGE

    ORDER!

    Thank you indeed Justice Boeder. The Court wishes to express its gratitude for your willingness to take responsibility for the proceedings while I ‘stepped down’ to give evidence. The Court looks forward to your continued presence alongside me on the bench as we continue with what is turning out to be a quite lengthy trial.

    In the absence of anyone willing to undertake a defence of the defendant, Michelle O’Byrne, I would call on the Prosecutor, Mrs Allan, to outline to the Court the next stage in the presentation of her case, and, if appropriate, to call her next witness.

    You may proceed, Madam Prosecutor.

  58. William Boeder

    September 17, 2009 at 12:53 pm

    Post 1.Thank you Madam Prosecutor.
    I now ask Mr. Stannus to hold his seat for the present, for any defendant defence issues to be addressed.
    Does any person here wish to represent the defence, if so please stand, announce your identity then to please address the court?

    Post 2. As there is no response from any defence counsel, nor does there appear any citizens prepared to stand up in court to cross examine the witness, this witness may now stand down.

    This ends the witness statements from the prosecution bench for today.

    I now call on the prosecution to advise the court if there are any further witnesses that are to be called to give evidences and be presented to the court in respect to this matter?

    thank you to all for the manner of conduct during this case, given that there have been some electronic and communication shortcomings experienced, by and large the Court is satisfied with the processes employed during this entire matter to date.

    Before the court is adjourned I would like to remind the gallery that there are multiple roles available to each and every member, even in their joining or so doing from hereon in?

    A last call for persons to act in the role of defence in this case?

    Failing in this second call for anyone present to answer in defence, or cross examine the witnesses, I call this court to order to announce the adjournment of this court.

    Court adjourned.

    William Boeder A J.

  59. William Boeder

    September 17, 2009 at 12:38 pm

    [William Boeder – Asst. Judge]
    As there is no response from any defence counsel, nor does there appear any citizens prepared to stand up in court to cross examine the witness, this witness may now stand down.

  60. William Boeder

    September 17, 2009 at 12:36 pm

    [William Boeder – Asst. Judge]
    Thank you Madam Prosecutor.
    I now ask Mr. Stannus to hold his seat for the present, for any defendant defence issues to be addressed.
    Does any person here wish to represent the defence, if so please stand, announce your identity then to please address the court?

  61. Geraldine Allan

    September 15, 2009 at 10:35 pm

    PROSECUTOR:
    Thank you, Mr STANNUS. I have no further questions.

    If it please your Honour.

  62. Garry Stannus

    September 15, 2009 at 10:16 pm

    Mr. STANNUS — [Response to Prosecutor Q22]

    For those wanting to view the MOU, and how the EPA gave away its complaints investigative role to the FPA, please see 3.3 and 3.4 of the Memorandum of Understanding at: http://www.fpa.tas.gov.au/fileadmin/user_upload/PDFs/Admin/FPE_EPA_MOU.pdf

  63. Geraldine Allan

    September 15, 2009 at 10:09 pm

    PROSECUTOR:
    22. You have just told the court that the Environmental Protection Authority has in effect signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Forest Practices Authority. Are you able to provide the jury members with a reference to the MOU for jury members?

  64. Garry Stannus

    September 15, 2009 at 9:45 pm

    Mr. STANNUS — [Response to Prosecutor Q21]
    The Trial was born out of frustration that a city and a valley of more that 100,000 people can be covered in smoke and that the police won’t intervene, the government won’t intervene, in fact its Environmental Protection Authority has in effect signed (1/12/08) a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Forest Practices Authority to the effect that complaints with regard to forestry will not be handled by the EPA, but will be forwarded to the FPA – the rabbit keeping guard over the lettuce patch.

    While acting out of frustration, my motivation was a desire to do something to try and stop the ongoing pollution of our air, so that people like Clive Stott and Richard Butler could live their lives in peace and health which is their right. However, I am afraid that in Clive’s case, he might never be able to return to the state of health that he previously enjoyed, before his health was affected by the smoke burns of 2008.

    Some say that ‘this burn here’, or that ‘that burn there’ was not under the control of the Minister or rather, was a Forestry matter, and that if pollution from smoke happened, it wasn’t the Minister’s Dept, which allowed it but, for example, Forestry Tasmania which allowed it. I would refer these people to the large-scale smoke event that was created by the Department of Parks and Wildlife, on the 12th May 2009, to which I have already referred in this evidence. At that time Parks were under the control of the Minister for the Environment, though now that the Government has abolished the Dept of Environment, I cannot say what Minister is now responsible for Parks.

  65. Geraldine Allan

    September 15, 2009 at 8:26 pm

    PROSECUTOR:
    21. Are you able to tell the jury what it was that provoked you to go to the extent preparing an indictment against Minister O’Byrne?

  66. Garry Stannus

    September 15, 2009 at 6:05 pm

    Mr. STANNUS — [Response to Prosecutor Q20]

    On the morning of the 22nd May 2009, Launceston was immersed in smoke, some residual from the previous days’ smoke events and some from industrial emissions. I was reminded of Dickensian England as I looked down over Invermay and Mowbray. It might have been around the end of May that I began preparing and collating the material that forms the indictment which was served on the Minister by hand delivery to her office by Clive Stott on Fri, 5th June 2009.

    I included in the indictment a Deposition from Clive Stott, Friday 22nd May, a reply from Michelle O’Byrne’s office (28 May 2009) acknowledging my complaint (12 May 2009). The letter said that the Minister would answer my concerns about smoke as soon as possible. I decided not to wait, but to move to put the Minister on trial for permitting the pollution of our air and for allowing the health of Tasmanians to suffer as a result of it. At the end of the indictment I included four images grouped together which recalled the smoke events of the previous year, 2008.
    This ends my direct reference to the contents of the indictment

  67. Geraldine Allan

    September 15, 2009 at 5:35 pm

    PROSECUTOR:
    20. Thank-you for that Mr. Stannus. Is there anything else that is factually relative to this trial concerning the May 2009 incidents, which you believe the jury should know?

  68. Garry Stannus

    September 15, 2009 at 5:16 pm

    Mr. STANNUS — [Response to Prosecutor Q19]
    Yes, I did. Out of concern for my friend Clive Stott, and out of concern for all of us who were living in these conditions, I checked the legislation to see if there was any protection for us against these relentless assaults. The law told me that environmental harm is any adverse effect on the environment (of whatever degree or duration) and that environmental harm can be material if it has a high impact or is on a wide scale, or if it involves an actual adverse effect on the health or safety of human beings that is not negligible. Serious environmental harm is defined in the Environmental Management and Pollution Control Act 1994 as involving an actual adverse effect on the health or safety of human beings that is of a high impact or on a wide scale … or it involves an actual adverse effect on the environment that is of a high impact or on a wide scale…

    In Schedule 1, Part 2, Clause 3(b) of the EMPCA 1994, one aim of the system established by the Act is listed as “… to prevent environmental degradation and adverse risks to human and ecosystem health by promoting pollution prevention, clean production technology, reuse and recycling of materials and waste minimization programmes;…”. Section 8 of the Act states that “It is the obligation of any person on whom a function is imposed or a power is conferred under this Act to perform the function or to exercise the power in such a manner as to further the objectives set out in Schedule 1.” The Act also provides for the establishment of a Board to perform a number of duties, two of which are to “protect the environment of Tasmania; and further the objectives of the Act.” Section 15 of the Act places the Board under the control of the Minister. The Act also provided for the setting up of the EPA, under the overall control and guidance of the Minister.

    Section 28 of the Act allows for environmental agreements between persons, but requires that they provide for matters intended to attain the objectives of the Act, as in Schedule 1 – such agreements must have the prior agreement of the Minister. The Act requires that the sustainable development of air and other resources includes “safeguarding the life-supporting capacity of air, water, soil and ecosystems.”

    Given the details in the Act that are referred to above, I formed the opinion that the Minister, by allowing the regular and continued pollution of our air, to the detriment of the health of some of the state’s citizens, was prima facie in contravention of the Act.

  69. Geraldine Allan

    September 15, 2009 at 4:55 pm

    PROSECUTOR:
    19. You have just told the jury members of your uneasiness about various smoke pollution you came across.

    Did you make any further enquiries relative to your concerns?

  70. garry stannus

    September 14, 2009 at 6:47 pm

    Mr. STANNUS — [Response to Prosecutor Q18]

    Yes. Families were down at Royal Park with the sunset brought on early by the smoke. You can see them in the first photo that is in the Indictment. It is the first photo in that document, captioned ” Launceston 21st May 5:15pm ‘There is a tide which flows…’ ” Downriver, in the distance can be seen one horizontal plume of smoke. At the top of the photo seems to be a general mass of dark cloud, not in the shape of the plume further down-river. Yet it too is smoke, a cloud of it – it just looks different when you are standing more or less directly under it.

  71. Geraldine Allan

    September 14, 2009 at 6:22 pm

    PROSECUTOR:
    18. You just told the jury about additional photos you took. Can you provide them with an explanation of those photos?

  72. garry stannus

    September 14, 2009 at 6:15 pm

    Mr. STANNUS — [Response to Prosecutor Q17]
    No. On leaving the Minister’s office on that afternoon (12th May), I took more photos of the smoke. I drove north out of town to pick up my wife. The smoke haze was all around, a smoky sun glinting off car windows, reflecting in the water of the Tamar. Out in Newnham, in the housing areas, the sky was full of smoke. The sun was a weak white orb with a touch of pink, seen through the smoke, that is, when you could see it. I drove back to town; the light was dark from the smoke. In the distance the far hills were bathed in sunshine, which Launceston only saw by peeking out through a slit of clear view between the horizon and the bottom of the smoke cloud. Cars had their lights on. Photos of the events of 11 and 12 May are contained in the Indictment, published in Tas Times, “The Trial of Michelle O’Byrne” on the 4th June 2009.

    A week later, Tue 19th May, the City and its suburbs were again shrouded in smoke. The air above it was full of smoke-drift. On the following day, Wed 20th May, there was smoke in the Tamar, in the city itself and down along the river. This smoke had come from the west beyond the hills that define the river valley. In the photographs that I took, you can see the smoke in the morning, down near Tamar Island, settled in every fold of the hills, in the trees, across the slopes and over and beyond the distant skyline. At sunset photos that I took from the CBD show the huge mass of smoke straddling the valley below the town.

    None of this prepared me for Thursday 21st of May 2009. That day there were two plumes of smoke crossing the Tamar. I photographed them from Bald Hill in Trevallyn, over Tamar Island. I had never seen anything like this. Clean green Tasmania! Oh my goodness! Clever Kind and connected! Members of the jury and members of the public can see for themselves what was going on by looking at the relevant pictures in the indictment.

  73. Geraldine Allan

    September 14, 2009 at 6:01 pm

    PROSECUTOR:
    17. Now, can you tell the court if that letter of complaint to which you have just referred, was the end of the matter for you?

  74. garry stannus

    September 14, 2009 at 5:50 pm

    Mr. STANNUS — [Response to Prosecutor Q16]
    Yes, I went into Michelle O’Byrne’s office and wrote a letter of complaint about the smoke. It was the 12th of May, 2008. I reproduce it here:
    “Michelle O’Byrne
    I am complaining to you in the strongest terms about the smoke that is all around Launceston. We have had it for another day again and it is unbelievably bad. Take a look out in St John St down the Tamar, or east down Paterson St and the hills. You are Minister for the Environment and you are responsible for the shocking state of affairs. This is a threat to public health and it is causing acute distress to people with respiratory problems brought on by our wretched air quality. We have a right to clean air. Please be aware that I am going to put you on trial in the court of public opinion. I will send you a statement of specific charges in the near future.

    You can contact me by mail at:
    78 Balfour St. Launceston. 7250, or garrystannus@hotmail.com
    Yours sincerely
    GARRY STANNUS”

  75. Geraldine Allan

    September 14, 2009 at 5:24 pm

    PROSECUTOR:
    16. Thank-you Mr. Stannus.

    Following on from what you have just told the jury, can you now tell them if you personally did anything else?

    Posted by Geraldine Allan on 15/09/09 at 01:22 PM

  76. Garry Stannus

    September 14, 2009 at 5:10 pm

    Mr. STANNUS — [Response to Prosecutor Q15]
    Yes, there was. The following comments were published in Tas Times:
    “I watched it from my home on the side of Mt Dismal. It was lit about 1.30pm and covered an area of length, by my estimate, of approx 2km. The length of the flames meant that either the burn was coordinated by a series of on ground personnel, or lit from the air. I could not believe that a cloudy, dull day, with no wind, was ideal conditions to burn near residential homes. The smoke made it across the West Tamar, over the river and as far East as the East Tamar Hwy until a light breeze and a little rain eased conditions. It continued to burn the next day. Who was responsible? What was the air monitoring reading? Michelle?
    Posted by Tony Saddington on 14/05/09 at 06:55 PM

    Mike the source was the Asbestos/Dazzler Ranges. One of the first parts of Tasmanian in which clear felling took place. At least two fires where burning that day.
    Posted by Karl Stevens on 14/05/09 at 08:18 PM

    I live on a ridge with a valley either side, between the Tamar River and the West Tamar Hwy. I saw the 2 smoke plumes rise on Monday and that night had trouble sleeping with a sore throat. Tuesday there was no wind to speak of but the smoke did a couple of spread out circuits from Beaconsfield to Exeter, Frankford etc and then gathered thickly together like in the photo and headed for the river valley. I have photos of it going over my place, also from Exeter, Brady’s Lookout and Bridgenorth. When it went over my place I thought of Clive, and knew Launceston would have a bad night. That pattern is how the smoke always seems to act, first the mushroom cloud, then the dispersal, then the gathering together and rolling down the river valley.
    PS I live about level with Longreach so that is a real clue about the atmospheric behavior from Longreach to Launceston.
    Posted by Shirley Glen on 14/05/09 at 11:08 PM

    From the Minister’s office on the corner of St John’s St and Paterson, I could see the smoke plume down St John St. There was smoke in the town itself; the sunshine had that smoky glow to it. There was smoke in the distance too when I looked down Paterson St and also south down St John St.

  77. Geraldine Allan

    September 14, 2009 at 2:41 pm

    PROSECUTOR:
    15. Was there any reaction to your publishing those photos and details, and if the answer is yes, can you tell the jury what the upshot was?

  78. logged_in_screen_name}

    September 14, 2009 at 3:06 am

    The Court thanks the prosecution for the tolerance displayed during the lengthy processes this issue of evidence presentation has wrought upon us all.
    Both the prosecution and witness Mr. Stannus may step down for now. This Court shall resume the following day of the 15th instant, subject to no further electronic mishap or delay as so caused.
    Further, as advised by the Court Recorder that all records of evidence as so given this day are complete, this court is so adjourned.

    William Boeder. AJ

  79. Garry Stannus

    September 14, 2009 at 12:59 am

    Mr. STANNUS — [Response to Prosecutor Q14]
    I will refer to events and photographs and other material published in the Tas Times Indictment document.
    On Monday 13th April 2009, I photographed widespread smoke haze to the northwest and north of Launceston. A week later, on the 20th of April, I photographed smoke haze over Invermay and Newnham, such that visibility was reduced. Two days later, Wed 22nd April, I photographed smoke crossing Trevallyn and Riverside. The next day, Thursday 23rd, at Landfall, home of premium beef, I photographed the hills and valleys through to Mount Arthur swaddled in smoke. The valley that Lilydale sits in was filled with smoke on the next day, Fri 24 April. Clive Stott emailed me [see indictment], telling me how he was “Barely able to walk at the time because of asthma, clots and DVT in the leg and clots in both lungs. On the 29th of April an extensive smoke haze lay across the Tamar estuary north of Tamar Island and extending beyond Mt Direction. And then the air improved around the time that Targa was being held.

    In the first two weeks of May of this year, 2009, there were several large-scale smoke events, which occurred in Northern Tasmania. Peter Power photographed these in the week beginning May 5, who captured a huge mass of smoke from Falmouth to Flinders Is. and by Dave Groves, Mike Adams and myself in the Tamar Valley on May 11/12th 2009. These photos are also published in Tas Times. Clive Stott emailed me briefly to say that he wasn’t well enough to proceed with the preparation for the trial, that the smoke had got him and that he would need a couple of days to get over it. A photo that I took on that day, 11th May, from Newnham, looking in the direction of the city, showed a visibility of c. 1-2km. In other words, you couldn’t see the city, where normally you can easily pick out all the familiar buildings, the Scots Church, Myers and so on, The next day Parks and Wildlife gave notice of a 400 hectare burn at Anson’s Bay and of a 1700 hectare burn in the Dazzler range, south east of Port Sorrell. At that stage, the Parks and Wildlife Document [see indictment] claimed to have already conducted 18 controlled burns, the largest to date being 1500ha. What was to come was to be bigger.

    That day, 12th May 2009, in the morning, the Tamar Valley and areas to either side and down towards the coast were choked with low-lying smoke from the day before. Looking back to town you could see Newnham covered in smoke, Invermay in smoke, Riverside, Trevallyn and West Launceston covered in smoke, the CBD in smoke. That was early in the day, before work. After work I drove back to town from Lilydale. I came down through the hills through smoke sections, smelling it and seeing more as I came down Finger Post hill.

    The view of the valley from Rocherlea showed me a huge mass of smoke straddling the river. I drove into town and parked. I wanted to complain to the Minister for the Environment. By any stretch of the imagination she had a responsibility to stop this sort of wide scale pollution of our air.

    Your Honour, the hour is getting on, could I be granted a break in this examination and continue at a later stage? I would be most grateful if you would.

  80. Geraldine Allan

    September 14, 2009 at 12:00 am

    PROSECUTOR:
    14. Thank you for that explanation Mr STANNUS. Can you now take that account further, in order to provide the jury with some detail as to how you pursued your concerns about the particle pollution?

  81. Garry Stannus

    September 13, 2009 at 11:21 pm

    Mr. STANNUS — [Response to Prosecutor Q13]
    Yes I did. And just as well too. I came across some information; it was concerning Launceston air pollution exceedances [http://www.environment.tas.gov.au/index.aspx?base=166] for the last year, 2008. I recall that elsewhere Minister O’Byrne had published information which said that in all of 2008 Launceston only experienced one bad air-quality day, and also that she/Warren Jones (EPA) said that came from a bush-fire. And yet I had seen the whole town covered in smoke from a controlled burn on the night of June 5/morning of June 6th, 2008. Minister O’Byrne’s press release “Launceston Air Quality Continues to Improve” [http://www.media.tas.gov.au/print.php?id=25002] claimed that there were in Launceston in June, July and August 2008, no “wintertime PM10 exceedence”. I do not believe this … I saw with my own eyes the smoke blow back over the city on the night-morning of June 5-6, 2008.

    I kept on taking photos; it’s a nice hobby. Here and there I see smoke and I get a picture of it. It’s amazing how much smoke is a part of our lives.

  82. Geraldine Allan

    September 13, 2009 at 11:00 pm

    PROSECUTOR:
    13. You told the jury earlier of how you kept an eye on the smoke pollution on specified days. After that time, did you continue your interest in monitoring the smoke pollution?

  83. Garry Stannus

    September 13, 2009 at 10:47 pm

    MR STANNUS — [Response to Prosecutor Q12]
    I saw the inappropriateness of Clive having been admitted to hospital, to try and get him better, and then having been sent back home for the smoke attacks to start all over again. “…chronic airflow limitation” – it sounds like being stifled with a pillow, really horrible. And then it got worse, “confined to a chair” DVT and pulmonary emboli. He got released again – he had learnt to inject himself at home so he could try and thin his blood against the smoke, even while they continued with further burns which made him worse. He said he was in a great deal of pain. I tried to understand what he meant by “a great deal of pain”. I was sure that he had down-played it. Five words … ‘a great deal of pain’. I felt that he was brave, stoic, trying not to overstate his suffering. I wouldn’t have been like that. I would have been more of a ‘woos’. He knew he wasn’t ready for being at home, but said he felt guilty because other people needed beds in hospital too. I didn’t think he should have felt like that. I wanted him to feel that he was entitled to all of the time and all of the care that he needed. I was upset that a man could be allowed to be put through this, because of stupid, wrongful, dangerous actions done with the knowledge and approval of our Government.

    How is anyone meant to feel? How can you just stand by and watch as a person is pushed to the limits of being able to function, tolerate pain, breathe and ultimately, to keep living? It was hurting me to think of it, that for the want of being able to get to hospital, to get treatment, his suffering could be extreme, also that there might be things needing doing around the house that he couldn’t do, that maybe if he didn’t have any friends, I should try and help him with. I had never met him, and knew nothing of him, but I felt that you just couldn’t just leave a fellah there to suffer or to possibly die, on his own, in pain and worse, just because the government wouldn’t help him.

    I was concerned for him and found his email on TT and contacted him, offering any help that he might want and that I could give. He understood and thanked me for the offer. We became friends though we had never actually met at that time.

  84. Geraldine Allan

    September 13, 2009 at 10:32 pm

    PROSECUTOR:
    12. Mr STANNUS, could you now please tell the jury how you felt about what you read?

  85. Garry Stannus

    September 13, 2009 at 7:37 pm

    Mr. STANNUS — [Response to Prosecutor Q11]
    Yes, it reads: – Clive Stott (www.cleanairtas.com) tells us his own story.
    “As a result of the forestry smoke this year (2008), I was admitted to the local hospital’s Accident and Emergency department on April 13 with chronic airflow limitation about two weeks after the burns started (March 28) and after trying unsuccessfully to manage my condition at home. I was treated and sent back home in amongst the smoke to recuperate. As a result of having to remain indoors confined to a chair because of the wood smoke outdoors and my exacerbation, I was back in A & E again on the May 25; this time the diagnosis was deep vein thrombosis DVT) and pulmonary emboli which is clots in the leg and lung, a potentially life threatening condition (in addition to my induced asthma). I was released to free up a bed because I had learnt to inject myself at home with blood thinners. I now also take blood-thinning tablets, probably for the rest of my life. I am in a great deal of pain in my leg because of the clots and breathing is extremely difficult because of them. I should be taking up a bed in hospital until I am well enough to be at home, but I feel guilty for the time I have been in there already taking up valuable resources when they are short of beds! One week later (1/6/08) I had another trip to A & E to sort out clot pain that couldn’t be managed at home. Then it’s back outside to ‘enjoy’ Launceston and the Tamar Valley’s smoke, not to mention further trips in it to my local doctor, chemist, pathology, hospital, specialist, and so it goes on. … You know before all this I was quite well.”

  86. Geraldine Allan

    September 13, 2009 at 4:54 pm

    PROSECUTOR:
    11. Mr. Stannus, I now wish to continue from your evidence given earlier this day @ http://oldtt.pixelkey.biz/images/uploads/Stannus_Evidence_-_1.doc

    You have just told the ladies and gentlemen of the jury how you know the plaintiff Mr Clive STOTT, and how it came about that you published a range of photos. In so publishing you said you included some text. Can you tell me what that text says?

  87. William Boeder

    September 13, 2009 at 4:34 pm

    Further to the matter of The Peoples Court of Opinion.
    The Trial of Michelle O’Byrne.
    As has been advised to you all, I William Boeder, have accepted the short term role of Assistant Judge, in the temporary absence of The Honorable Mr. Stannus, the appointed judge presiding over this matter.
    In order to allow the courts processes to continue in the manner as so set during the earlier stages of this Peoples Court,
    I request that the evidences relevant and available continue to be addressed to the court.

    Please proceed.

    William Boeder AJ.

  88. Garry Stannus

    September 13, 2009 at 2:49 pm

    [ROLE: Court Recorder]

    Your Honour, [Boeder AJ]

    1. I seek leave to enter into the Court Records, the examination of the witness, Mr Garry Stannus. The Prosecutor has commenced her examination and has asked the witness ten preliminary questions, to which Mr Stannus has responded. The text of these questions from Counsel, Mrs Geraldine Allan, and the responses from Mr Stannus have been published today (Sept 14 2009) in the Court of Public Opinion (News, Views, Cartoons section of the New Tasmanian Times). This block of evidence can be accessed at:
    http://oldtt.pixelkey.biz/images/uploads/Stannus_Evidence_-_1.doc

    2. Your Honour, with the agreement of the Court, the further sections of Mr Stannus’s evidence will be published directly into the comments thread of the Trial of Michelle O’Byrne, at a point below this entry.

    If it please your Honour.

  89. Garry Stannus

    September 13, 2009 at 12:14 am

    Garry Stannus – ROLE: Judge

    ORDER!
    Pursuant to RULES OF COURT, COURT OF PUBLIC OPINION, RULE 4, which has been posted variously in court documents and is listed above [see #86],

    “4. Participants may adopt more than one role – separate comments for separate roles. Please identify in which role you address the Bench.”

    it is the intention of this member of the bench, STANNUS J, to temporarily take a second role in the Court, that is, to appear as a WITNESS for the Prosecution, and to give evidence, and to make myself available for examination by Counsel.

    It gives me some pleasure to welcome to the Bench, a learned friend, who is already known to the Court, having been registered as a member of the Public Gallery since the commencement of the Trial, and having also elected to serve as a Juror in July of this year. William Boeder, I’m sure, will shine light throughout the Court in his capacity as Assistant Judge, BOEDER AJ, and I now advise the Court Recorder, to make the necessary adjustments to the Court Records.

    Mr Stannus is moving to the Witness Box, This Court of Public Opinion is now guided by William Boeder AJ.

    ORDER!

  90. Garry Stannus

    August 30, 2009 at 11:03 am

    ROLE: Court Recorder/Judge

    Order!
    The Court accepts into the record of evidence the statement from Greenwitch00 which was made in comment 109.

    This is done under Court Rules, Rule No 2:
    “2. Real names, not pseudonyms, are required in this trial in the TT Court of Public Opinion.
    [exemptions, e.g. for whistleblowers, available. CONTACT garrystannus@hotmail.com]”
    which appear in comment #86 and in other court documents.

    Greenwitch00 has contacted this Officer of the Court and has given reasons for retaining anonymity which have satisfied the requirements of Rule 2 and which have been accepted by the Court.

    – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

    Greenwitch00’s statement read:
    “While not registered as a witness in this trial, I beg the Court’s indulgence in making a comment on the same problem as stated by Mr. Butler. My husband is a late onset asthmatic and we came to Tasmania because we thought the air would be clean, having believed all the propaganda. We bought on the Tamar River, again believing this would be the best spot. In just a few months his asthma had become progressively worse and we couldn’t understand why. We then went to Sydney for a week, staying in the very centre of the city, and noticed, after a couple of days, that he hadn’t coughed at all. This greatly surprised us and we couldn’t understand what was happening. His coughing started again when we stopped in Launceston on the way home from the airport. We have noticed that this sequence happens all the time; even in heavily polluted European cities his need for nebulisers is one tenth of that required here in ‘clean green Tasmania’. I also agree that the ACCC should be contacted re the Tas. Govt. misleading the Australian people – the comments made by Mr. Bartlett recently about the ‘cleanest air in the world’ (a small patch on the far north west coast) is disingenuous on a grand scale.

    My husband has been told by a respected specialist that he should leave the Tamar Valley permanently, and Tasmania for the burning period. As that’s not practical we are leaving for the cleaner air on the mainland.

    I thank the Court for this opportunity to comment.”

    [Posted by greenwitch00 on 21/08/09 at 01:51 PM]

    – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

    Thank you Greenwitch00, your statement is now included in the Record of the Proceedings of this Trial in the Court of Public Opinion.

    The Court understands that there has been a change in the list of further witnesses to be called and adjourns proceedings while this matter is attended to.

    Order!

  91. Garry Stannus

    August 24, 2009 at 1:29 am

    [ROLE: Judge]
    And of course, fruitless though it may be, does any person appear for the defendant Michelle O’Byrne? This is another opportunity in the Court of Public Opinion for citizens to stand in Court, state their real names, and cross-examine the witness.

    If not, I will call on the Prosecutor to introduce her next witness. Let the Public be reminded, that all positions are open for multiple-occupancy, that there is room on the bench for Judges alongside myself, that more than one can Prosecute the case, that more than one can Record, that the Jury list remains open, that Discovery is ongoing, and finally, that the Court regrets that there has not yet been found one citizen who will appear (under their own name) for the Defendant.

    Pray proceed, with either a Defence cross-examination of Mr Butler, or the examination of the Prosecution’s next witness.

    The Court will now hear from either Defence or Prosecution.

    Order!

  92. Garry Stannus

    August 23, 2009 at 12:56 pm

    Role – JUDGE
    Thank you Madam Prosecutor. It seems our Recorder has finally fixed the present problem, a ‘technical glitch’ I believe you called it, Madam Prosecutor. The Court trusts we are now able to proceed without further ado?

  93. Andrew Preece

    August 21, 2009 at 5:04 pm

    Just testing the comment system!

  94. Garry Stannus

    August 21, 2009 at 3:15 pm

    …/Cont

    PROSECUTOR:
    7 So it sounds to me that this Tasmanian experience makes you feel very angry, Mr BUTLER.

    Mr. BUTLER:
    7 This is a bit obvious. I could have died. I was hardly skipping about in a state of joy.

    PROSECUTOR:
    8 Mr BUTLER, I am no medical expert, but it sounds to me that you were very ill. Did it occur to you that you ought go to hospital?

    Mr. BUTLER:
    8 At the time I was in my view, borderline overdosing on Ventolin and started to feel very ill. My pulse was very elevated and I was experiencing a number of other issues – very hot temperature and so on. I also became lightheaded and felt most secure and safe lying on the cold floor and moving as little as possible. Had we driven up to outpatients I would have been very car-sick or collapsed or both.
    PROSECUTOR:
    9 Thank-you Mr. BUTLER. Is there anything further you need to add that that you believe is relevant to smoke pollution and this particular trial?

    Mr. BUTLER:
    9 No.

    PROSECUTOR:
    10 If you will, I would like you to comment on the vision of Tasmania Together in the context of this trial. The published vision is: –
    “Tasmania is an island community, unique for its natural and cultural environment, where people enjoy a prosperous lifestyle based on quality, creativity and opportunity.”

    Mr. BUTLER:
    10 That may be the case up on the far north west coast – but less than 4 hours away in the Tamar Valley – the air at times is so poor it exceeds fine particulate legal levels under World Health Standards. The Tamar Valley – kind of clean one day and 3rd world the next. What a sick joke that is.

    PROSECUTOR:
    11 Now finally Mr BUTLER, can you comment to the jury about the fact that here in Tasmania in order to avoid further health repercussions, our Department of Environmental Health recommendation to vulnerable persons, is to stay indoors when there is smoke pollution?

    Mr. BUTLER:
    11 Well what a pathetic response from a pathetic and incomplete department. The wording should be re-drafted to announce:
    ‘Owing to the fact that we don’t have full control of pollutants and those who are legally allowed to pollute, we ask you to stay indoors until the proceeds of their activities subsides. After all, we wouldn’t want to have to engage in the legally sanctioned conduct from others – even if it kills a few people on the way – now… would we?’

    If it please your Honour.

  95. Garry Stannus

    August 21, 2009 at 3:14 pm

    COURT RECORDER – Garry Stannus
    …/Cont

    PROSECUTOR:
    4 So from your answer to my Q.3, it appears the smoke was really thick and widespread. Was it coming from wood heaters and if not, where do you believe it was coming fro m?

    Mr. BUTLER:
    4 Well later in the evening we drove towards Exeter and then up to Brady’s Lookout, and the closer we drove to Launceston the clearer the air was. So although it wasn’t clean air, it was clear that the burn came from areas other than Launceston.

    PROSECUTOR:
    5 Is there anything more you wish to tell the jury about the damage smoke pollution has caused you or about particle pollution in general that you believe is relevant to this trial?

    Mr. BUTLER:
    5 Only that my exposure to the atmosphere of the kind we experienced was probably about 8 hours, and although I slept on the floor in the evening to get as low as possible and as far away from the smoke that I could – my overall health suffered substantially, and had I been in my home state I would have self admitted to hospital

    PROSECUTOR:
    6 You refer to medications necessary to get you back on track. Now we do have a witness medical practitioner, who will be giving evidence later. I will ask him about the extent of the use of Ventolin and Seretide, if they are powerful drugs and if they can be dangerous at the application to which you required. Meanwhile, I would like to ask you as a layman what you know and how you believe you ought administer your own relative medication?

    Mr. BUTLER:
    6 My doctor is clear on dosages. In my case Ventolin is not meant to exceed 4 puffs every four hours. Exceeding that can cause other stresses like heart palpitations – however when my asthma gets ‘out of control’ oxygen transfer into my bloodstream can reduce to below 94% and when that occurs I can quickly slip into a very dangerous coma and in all likelihood – die. So on the rare occasion the preventive management fails to work – advice to me from a number of specialists in Melbourne has been to get into a quiet and passive position and keep taking the Ventolin as often as is needed to ease the difficulty in breathing.

    My usual dose of Ventolin is by a conventional puffer however I needed to take 4 vials of Salbutamol – a much stronger concentration in liquid form and in this case the Salbutamol is poured into a mask and vaporized. I have only used a mask ventilator on two occasions in my life and this use was far more that I have ever previously used.

    Seretide is a cortical steroid. It is a cortisone-based drug and is a de-sensitizer and anti-inflammatory drug, applied in my case to airways by breathing in a fine powder. So I breathe in a dose in the morning and in the evening.

    Cont/…

  96. Geraldine Allan

    August 20, 2009 at 5:29 pm

    Role — PROSECUTOR
    I apologise for the delay in proceedings your Honour, there appears to be a technical glitch in posting to this thread. The court recorder is experiencing difficulties, thus we are unable to proceed further until the records are updated.

    If it please your Honour.

  97. Garry Stannus

    August 20, 2009 at 10:56 am

    COURT RECORDER – Garry Stannus
    [Continuation of evidence by the witness, Mr Richard Butler, under examination by the Prosecutor, Mrs Geraldine Allen.]

    PROSECUTOR:
    1 Are you the same Richard Butler who has been recognised as a member of the court gallery who commented on this trial site, on 5th June 2009?

    Mr. BUTLER:
    Yes I am the same person.

    PROSECUTOR:
    2 Can you tell my why you wrote the following: –
    “I’ve just come in having sucked in some very clean air – dramatically, DRAMATICALLY cleaner than any in what is fast becoming a ‘dirty ditch’ The Tamar Valley. Yep. I’m off my nebuliser, off the Prednisalone and back onto maintenance doses of Seretide. Not a hint of any asthma, and I’m evening jogging again.
    Yep the clean air – much cleaner than Tamar regions is the Victorian Burnley Tunnel, The South East Freeway and the smog collecting in Ferntree Gully.
    Those ads being run showing Boags Beer being produced from magic water (magic is right – its full of Atrizine) and those glossy ads printed in the Age on Sundays showing clean well retouched shots of vineyards on grassy slopes in retouched and clean air. Someone ought to get onto the ACCC for gross misrepresentation of reality. Clean Tasmania? Army Intelligence? Bartlett and Leadership? Effective EPA?
    Apple schmapple- a disgraceful and disgusting gaggle of oxymorons.”

    Mr. BUTLER:
    Because I am an asthmatic and have been so for around 35 years. My asthmatic condition is caused through a normalised response to cigarette smoke, woodsmoke, the atmosphere in pubs and other places where there is a lack of ventilation and smoke.

    PROSECUTOR:
    3(a) Can you tell me if you are aware of any Tasmanian situation related to smoke pollution?
    3(b) If you are aware of any circumstances, can you tell me how you came to this knowledge?

    Mr. BUTLER:
    3(a) Yes I am aware through my own experiences, and my knowledge of others who have suffered similarly. Since moving interstate from Launceston to a capital city with over 4 million people my asthma management program and the incidence and severity of my asthma has substantially reduced from what it was in Launceston.

    3(b) Forestry and Gunns would seem to have a license to damage, abuse and cause harm in Tasmania. Not just to native forest, but to its people.

    Around 18th May 2009, a friend and I had spent the best part of a week on the West Coast, and after a few days away needed to drive back to the Tamar Valley. We drove up past the Savage River mine, with its great grey green greasy tailings lake in the middle of some superb country. We drove through the Hellyer Gorge and out the other side towards Warratah where there are acres of destroyed bush – the ground laid bare except for rows of dead trees pushed up to make way for plantation timber. Further along, dense geometrically perfect rows of trees with moss and lichens growing on the trunks and limbs. No air, no growth and in some cases where they’ve ripped out the crop the scrub is reappearing and reclaiming some space. But not the forests that once were. They’re gone.

    Then, in the late afternoon and into the early evening – so between 6.30 and 7.30 pm, when it was fully dark just outside Exeter I thought we were driving into the thickest fog I’d ever seen. The lights of the car seemed like white columns of concrete in front of the vehicle. It wasn’t fog, it was smoke – and I immediately got bad asthma – worse that I get in Melbourne where there are close to 3.5 million people and about a third as many cars. I had not had any Seretide for a week, and I didn’t seem to need it. I was immediately ill when we arrived and got out of the car. That evening I required over 52 doses of Ventolin across an 11-hour period. I needed nebulised product 4 times when I got back into Melbourne.

    Inside the McMahon Exeter home the smell of smoke was enough to make me convinced there was a fire in the house, and we could not see across his paddock to the front gate – distance no more than 30 metres. I had clothes on the line and they all needed to be re-rinsed and a coat I have will need dry cleaning.

    How this can continue year on year without someone picking up a weapon and causing some real indiscriminate harm is beyond me. Melbourne, Sydney and even Calcutta are not a patch on the crappy air in the Tamar Valley. It was the equivalent density to the recent fires in Victoria – the sun was as blocked there is it was at Exeter that day.

    All advertising promoting the area as clean and pristine should be referred to the ACCC

    Cont/…

  98. William Boeder

    August 20, 2009 at 2:30 am

    Blair Trumpet and Fair Strumpet # 105-106.

    Contrary to each of your statements, there is inherent in this Court of the people, a strong determination to exact some form of broad recognition in and toward the inexcusable and irresponsible conduct of ministers within this present State Labor government.

    The fact is that the citizenry of Tasmania feel the compulsion to enact a court trial so to present in detail what they deem as absolute ill-governance and gross failure of office by a minister in this government.
    The nay-sayers, the fence-sitters, the blind and the misled, all of whom are critical of this court, are in denial to what has driven this most compelling need to hold such as this public court.

    Do realise that the most deplorable and lowly standards in representation of the people, added to this the extreme lack of accountability by said minister, is but just cause for having such as this public trial.

    There is far too much blind following and dumb allegiance awarded to those whom so miserably fail in their duty to their high ministerial office.
    Soon there may be need to dwell upon minister Graeme Sturges for the abject failure he has shown to his portfolio responsibilities.

  99. Fair Strumpet

    August 20, 2009 at 12:43 am

    What an astonishing assemblage of gibberish.

  100. Blair Trumpet

    August 19, 2009 at 3:20 pm

    While your various points may have merit, as may your grievances, your actions mirror those of the government that you abhor.

    You are engaging in a kangaroo court that fails to represent or mount any defense to the supposed accused.

    How is this any different to the biased rants of the ALP government and its apparatchiks?

  101. Garry Stannus

    August 18, 2009 at 2:55 pm

    JUDGE: Garry Stannus
    Thank you Madam Prosecutor, please proceed with putting Mr Butler’s evidence before the court. Thank you Mr Butler, for your willingness to assist the Court of Public Opinion by giving evidence. Your giving evidence is seen by the Court as an exercise in honourable civic-mindedness, as is that of Mrs Brandie and Mr Clive Stott.

    This Court has none of the usual legal or coercive powers and relies on nothing but the input from members of the General Public for its existence and authority.

    Pray proceed.

  102. Geraldine Allan

    August 17, 2009 at 6:03 pm

    RESUMPTION OF THE COURT OF THE PEOPLE OF TASMANIA
    Witness Evidence Continued

    ROLE —WITNESS ANSWERS.

    Your Honour, I apologise for the delay. There has been a misunderstanding due to my communications with the witness not being sufficiently clear about the process. The witness has answered my earlier questions as follows: –

    1. PROSECUTOR:
    Would you please state your full name?

    Mr. BUTLER:
    Richard BUTLER

    2. PROSECUTOR:
    And next, will you please take the oath or affirmation, as you prefer.

    Mr. BUTLER:
    Taken

    3. PROSECUTOR:
    Mr. BUTLER (a) are you a resident of Tasmania? If the answer to that question is no, then (b) can you say if you visit the state very often?

    Mr. BUTLER:
    (a) No,
    (b) I visit often

    4. PROSECUTOR:
    First of all Mr. BUTLER, I refer to your various articles and comments @
    http://www.oldtt.pixelkey.biz/
    These are available for members of the jury to peruse, by searching “Richard Butler” on that website. I note that in March 2008, a Mr. Dave Groves wrote about you @
    http://oldtt.pixelkey.biz/index.php?/weblog/article/portraints-of-activists/
    “A local boy in his youth, Richard loves this magical island jewel Tasmania, its people and its precious environment”. In order to acquaint yourself and your relationship with Tasmania, to the ladies and gentlemen of the jury, could you briefly tell them about you and your Tasmanian history?

    Mr. BUTLER:
    I grew up in Tasmania. My formative years were spent at Bridport before it was overrun with new/ merchant and golf money, Coles Bay before the road was sealed, Lune River, King River Gorge and the west coast before it became a tea and scones stop-over for Australian Pacific bus tours. My father used to fish the Pieman in the late 1930’s and early 1940’s. I have learned over the past 25 years that one can take a boy out of Tasmania, but one cant take Tasmania out of the boy. Some of my closest and most respected friends remain in Tasmania. I’m not aware of any authorship in reference to me, however I know Dave Groves is a wonderful cartoonist.

    If it please your Honour I shall now continue with my next questions.

  103. Garry Stannus

    August 12, 2009 at 10:37 pm

    JUDGE – Garry Stannus”

    Thank you, Madam Prosecutor, you may proceed. Let the witness respond.

  104. Geraldine Allan

    August 12, 2009 at 9:05 pm

    THE COURT OF THE PEOPLE OF TASMANIA
    Witness Evidence Continued
    Prosecutorial questions of next witness Mr Richard BUTLER.

    Thank-you your Honour. I firstly apologise for the delay. The Crown’s next witness, Mr BUTLER has been interstate and unavailable until now.

    I now call Mr Richard BUTLER to the witness stand.

    1. PROSECUTOR:
    Would you please state your full name?

    2. PROSECUTOR:
    And next, will you please take the oath or affirmation, as you prefer.

    3. PROSECUTOR:
    Mr. BUTLER are you a resident of Tasmania? If the answer to that question is no, then can you say if you visit the state very often?

    4. PROSECUTOR:
    First of all Mr. BUTLER, I refer to your various articles and comments @ http://www.oldtt.pixelkey.biz/
    These are available for members of the jury to peruse, by searching “Richard Butler” on that website.

    I note that in March 2008, a Mr. Dave Groves wrote about you @
    http://oldtt.pixelkey.biz/index.php?/weblog/article/portraints-of-activists/
    “A local boy in his youth, Richard loves this magical island jewel Tasmania, its people and its precious environment”.

    In order to acquaint yourself and your relationship with Tasmania, to the ladies and gentlemen of the jury, could you briefly tell them about you and your Tasmanian history?

    If it please your Honour.

  105. Garry Stannus

    August 9, 2009 at 1:47 am

    JUDGE: Garry Stannus

    Order! thank you, Madam Prosecutor. The Court calls for interested members of the Public to identify themselves and commence a cross-examination of the witness, Mrs Brandie. In case there are no such expressions of interest, and in order to expedite matters, the Court also issues a simultaneous call for the Prosecutor to begin the process of calling and swearing in her next witness.

    Likewise, Mrs Brandie, thank you for having made yourself available to give your evidence from the northern hemisphere – and across several time zones. The Court asks that you and the other witnesses in this case, remain prepared for possible subsequent recall to the witness box. That is all for the time being, you may stand down Mrs Brandie.

  106. Shane Weatherall

    August 7, 2009 at 9:26 pm

    All opposed to smoke.

    Would you be prepared to accept financial and social responibility of your actions in stopping burnoffs did work, and hundreds (maybe thousands) of people died in the resulting fire-storms.

    And please, no comments about using other methods as a complete replacement such as mulching – it doesn’t work and it is still fuel.

  107. Garry Stannus

    August 6, 2009 at 11:44 am

    …/Cont
    PROSECUTOR:
    Mrs. BRANDIE can you say what brought you to protest?

    Mrs BRANDIE:
    I am protesting for the health of those affected by wood smoke that they are forced to breathe, even though the authorities know that it is making the residents sick.

    It seems that the Government, Environment and Forestry care more about financial gain over the health of their residents. All smoke has cancer-causing substances. There is no such thing as ‘good’ wood smoke! Also, the environment is being damaged severely with the toxins that are being dispersed into the air, water and soil.

    PROSECUTOR:
    And further to that, Mrs. BRANDIE, could you please tell the jury if you see common ground and damage in — wood burner smoke damage when compared with forestry burn-off smoke?

    Mrs BRANDIE:
    I certainly do! Both forestry burns and wood burners emit smoke. It’s the particulate matter that invades the lungs of the unsuspecting that causes health effects that can lead to cancer, asthma, heart attacks and even death.
    All smoke contains noxious toxins and causes damage to both human health and the environment. Most people don’t realize how far smoke travels, dispersing its poisons along the way.

    PROSECUTOR:
    Thank-you Mrs. BRANDIE. Is there anything further you need to add that that you believe is relevant to smoke pollution and this particular trial?

    Mrs BRANDIE:
    I think that more people should stand up for their rights. It annoys me to no end to hear people complain yet take no action.

    I am so proud of Clive for all he is doing.

    There must be safer ways to get rid of those trees than to endanger the residents. Having seen what is going on there, I don’t think I’d ever want to go there at all. I used to think it was so beautiful there and I guess that’s what they want vacationers to think.
    I wonder if the Forestry officials were threatened with the exposure to the truth of what goes on during these burns, if they would end this craziness. But, I doubt even that would work.
    The most important thing in all of this is the danger that they are putting their residents in. And, they don’t care!

    PROSECUTOR:
    Thank-you Mrs. BRANDIE. Could you tell me if you are aware of the Tasmanian situation regarding health damage caused by smoke pollution? And … if your answer is yes, could you tell me how you know about it, and briefly what you know?

    Mrs BRANDIE:
    While doing some research on the health effects of wood smoke, I came across Clive Stott’s web site. Upon noticing the almost identical symptoms of the people of Tasmania who are deluged in smoke from the forestry burns to those of us dealing with wood heaters that emit smoke, I contacted Clive. I have been following the updates of the forestry burns and am astounded by the fact that it continues even though the residents have filed complaints about the many health issues they are dealing with due to smoke inhalation.

    It is quite obvious to me, and should be to all others, that just viewing the amount of smoke that is dispersed by forestry burns shows that the burns create far more particulate matter in an even shorter amount of time than do wood heaters. This smoke travels for miles endangering everyone and everything in its path. To throw the blame on wood heaters is absolute nonsense when one can see the vast outpouring of smoke from the burns.

    PROSECUTOR:
    I appreciate that explanation, Mrs. BRANDIE. Now finally, can you comment to the jury about the fact that here in Tasmania our Department of Environmental Health recommendation is to stay indoors when there is smoke pollution?

    Mrs BRANDIE:
    Being told to stay indoors is not the answer. I was indoors and tried everything I could think of to keep the smoke out of our house. There was nothing that could stop it. It seeps in through doorways, windows, roof-vents and is pulled in by the furnace and/or air conditioner. I tried leaving the bathroom fans on to try to pull it out but that didn’t work either.

    I have had people tell me that they tried taping all around their windows and doors and even sealed off rooms in an attempt to keep the smoke out. Nothing works.

    In their homes, with smoke invading it, they become almost disoriented from the stench and a feeling of panic sets in as they realize that they are poisoning themselves by living in these conditions. Even so, they cannot sell their homes without releasing the fact of the air conditions in their homes. It is law here in Canada. And, doing that, who in their right mind would buy it?
    What frightens me the most, and why I keep trying to get wood smoke stopped, is that not many people can afford to hire a lawyer as we did and get an injunction. Nor do they have someplace to escape to for the many months it takes to get though the legal system, and so they are forced to live in these dangerous conditions and become sick, as so many have.

    If it please your Honour.

  108. Garry Stannus

    August 6, 2009 at 11:42 am

    COURT RECORDER: Garry Stannus
    The following prosecution examination of the Witness, Shirley BRANDIE, was posted separately in the Tasmanian Times on 7th Aug 2009. That document can be viewed at http://oldtt.pixelkey.biz/images/uploads/Shirley_Brandie_Qs_1.doc

    PROSECUTOR:
    Would you please state your full name?

    Mrs BRANDIE:
    Shirley Ann BRANDIE

    PROSECUTOR:
    Would you please take the oath or affirmation, as you prefer.

    Mrs BRANDIE:
    I swear to tell the whole truth and nothing but the truth in this court of public opinion.

    PROSECUTOR:
    Mrs. BRANDIE, first of all I refer to your website @ http://WoodBurnerSmoke.net
    In order to acquaint yourself and your situation with the jury, I would like you, if you can, to briefly in perhaps one or two sentences, tell the jury why you found it necessary to establish that site.

    Mrs BRANDIE:
    I decided to start my web site to be able to show what can happen to people when there is no help available and also to try to help others who are being smoked out of their homes. From there it led to the newsletters and now a Forum on my site.
    I will fight for a total ban on residential burning until I get one!

    PROSECUTOR:
    Thank-you. Now Mrs. BRANDIE will you further explain your ‘warfare’ on smoke (generally) to jury members.

    Mrs BRANDIE:
    I have tried every authority that I could think of to end the wood smoke.
    I received plenty of sympathy but no action. It seemed they all had ‘no control’ over the issue and suggested I call our Town Council.
    Of course, I had already done that only to be told there were no bylaws covering it.
    Seems to me that a by-law could have been created in no time at all and enforced, but they have chosen to await our trial before dealing with my request for a total ban in residential areas.
    So, we went the legal route, at great expense, to get a temporary injunction. Trial should be sometime before the end of this year.

    PROSECUTOR:
    Mrs. BRANDIE can you be specific about the damage smoke has caused to you.

    Mrs BRANDIE:
    The smoke that invaded our home & property caused severe symptoms that eventually drove us out of our house. They included sore throats, upper respiratory infections, burning eyes, headaches, nausea, bleeding nasal ulcers, dizziness, digestive problems and stress beyond belief when no help was obtained.

    We could not open our windows for fresh air because there was none! No amount of begging the neighbor to stop did any good at all and, in fact, spurred him on to burn more intensely.

    Our home had to be stripped to the bare bones to rid it of toxins (we had an air quality specialist live here for 3 days and did sampling of the indoor & outdoor air. He found very dangerous chemicals). We had to dispose of all carpeting, bedding, mattresses, ductwork, furnace, air conditioner (the airconditioning fan just blows air straight from outside into the ducting that is distributed throughout the house), all plastics, etc. and the walls and everything had to be washed down and repainted. It was a lengthy and expensive restore!

    Cont/…

  109. Red Bob

    August 4, 2009 at 3:10 am

    Re: 95. If one were a defence counsel one would object to question five on the grounds that it presumes fact that would no doubt be in dispute (i.e. that the witness has suffered smoke damage) and on the grounds that the witness is not qualified to answer whether they have suffered smoke damage or not and to what degree. Of course, one does not need a defence counsel to object because a judge has a duty to ensure the defendant has a fair trial. So let’s see if he rules the question and any like it out of order . . . Or is this where the `realism’ of this exercise is found to be lacking?

  110. Geraldine Allan

    August 3, 2009 at 6:52 pm

    RESUMPTION OF THE COURT OF THE PEOPLE OF TASMANIA

    Witness Evidence Continued
    Interrogatories

    ROLE — Prosecutorial questions of next witness.

    Thank-you your Honour. I now call Mrs Shirley Brandie of Ontario, Canada, to the witness stand.

    1. PROSECUTOR:
    Would you please state your full name?

    2. PROSECUTOR:
    Would you please take the oath or affirmation, as you prefer.

    3. PROSECUTOR:
    Mrs. BRANDIE, first of all I refer to your website @ http://WoodBurnerSmoke.net
    In order to acquaint yourself and your situation with the jury, I would like you, if you can, to briefly in perhaps one or two sentences, tell the jury why you found it necessary to establish that site.

    4. PROSECUTOR:
    Now Mrs. BRANDIE will you further explain your ‘warfare’ on smoke (generally) to jury members

    5. PROSECUTOR:
    Mrs. BRANDIE can you be specific about the damage smoke has caused to you.

    6. PROSECUTOR:
    Mrs. BRANDIE can you say what brought you to protest?

    7. PROSECUTOR:
    And further to that, Mrs. BRANDIE, could you please tell the jury if you see common ground and damage in — wood burner smoke damage when compared with forestry burn-off smoke?

    8. PROSECUTOR:
    Thank-you Mrs. BRANDIE. Is there anything further you need to add that that you believe is relevant to smoke pollution and this particular trial?

    9. PROSECUTOR:
    Could you tell me if you are aware of the Tasmanian situation regarding health damage caused by smoke pollution? And … if your answer is yes, could you tell me how you know about it, and briefly what you know?

    10. PROSECUTOR:
    Mrs. BRANDIE. Now finally, can you comment to the jury about the fact that here in Tasmania our Department of Environmental Health recommendation is to stay indoors when there is smoke pollution?

    If it please your Honour.

  111. Garry Stannus

    August 2, 2009 at 11:08 pm

    JUDGE – Garry Stannus

    Madam Prosecutor:

    The Court receives this news with some degree of ambivalence. While sympathy and concern for Mr Stott are naturally foremost in our minds, we are yet left wondering whether the prosecution is confident of its ability to bring its case to conclusion.

    The Court notes that you have another witness, a Mrs Shirlie Brandie, from Ontario, in Canada, who is ready to give evidence while Mr Stott is indisposed. The Court will grant your request to have Mr Stott stand aside on the grounds of present ill-health, for possible recall at a later date, and for Mrs Brandie to be called as the next witness for the prosecution.

    It must be said that we would expect that her testimony will be pertinent to the matters undergoing examination in this trial, and we now give you leave to call her to the stand.

  112. Geraldine Allan

    August 2, 2009 at 2:24 pm

    ROLE — PROSECUTOR (rising, with pleading smile on face)

    Your Honour, if it so please, I beg your indulgence relating to the continuity of proceedings in this trial.

    In relation to witness STOTT, I report that he is currently indisposed due to a fall resulting in broken ribs. Thus I seek (1) your permission for him to temporarily stand aside from the witness box and (2) your consent that I recall him at a later time if that becomes necessary.

    At this point of time, I have a witness on standby — Mrs Shirley BRANDIE, from Ontario Canada. She is ready to give evidence, thus I seek your approval to call her as the next witness for the prosecution.

  113. Geraldine Allan

    August 2, 2009 at 2:09 pm

    COURT OBSERVER — Geraldine Allan whispering to other observers in the gallery

    Methinks His Honour is a bit grumpy today. Maybe the week-end inclement weather prevented his game of golf and 19th hole activities!

  114. Garry Stannus

    August 2, 2009 at 10:21 am

    JUDGE – Garry Stannus

    ORDER! …. ORDER!

    There being no indication of any parties rising to speak on behalf of the Defendant, or to cross-examine Mr Stott, the Court will proceed. Perhaps the weekend weather has proved too inclement for some.

    Mr Stott, you can stand down for the time being, until the Court gets some clear sense of direction.

    Prosecutor Allan, I presume you intend to recall Mr Stott, though given the pace of the Prosecution’s address and questioning of its first witness, it may well be the case that you have further questions of him now.

    Indeed Madam Prosecutor, would you be so kind as to inform the Court of your intentions and hopefully get on with your witness interrogatories without further delay? Are you ready to call your next witness?

  115. Garry Stannus

    August 1, 2009 at 8:45 pm

    JUDGE – Garry Stannus
    THE COURT HEARS MR WILLIAM BOEDER.
    Mr Boeder, you have raised a number of questions and issues concerning which the Court is inclined to provide the following responses:

    Q Whether the Court has granted leave to an anonymous person for the purposes of addressing the court and “making statements and critique upon the actual commencement and purposes” of the Court.
    A Under the Rules of this Court of Public Opinion, (2 in #86) so far developed, there is provision for exemptions from the requirement for the full identification of all persons in the Court. As noted in parentheses following R2, exemptions in certain circumstances are available, upon application to Mr Garry Stannus at his email address: garrystannus@hotmail.com .
    The Court advises Mr Boeder that no such application has been made and that no such leave has been granted.
    The Court further advises Mr Boeder that it does not envisage an application being successfully made were it based on the desire to make statements calculated to be detrimental to the good order of the Court and which in some wise could be seen to interfere with the ability of the Court to reach a fair and just verdict with regard to the Defendant, Michelle O’Byrne, and the charges on which she is being tried.

    Q Complaint against an attempted disruption of the proceedings of this Court by such anonymous person
    A The Court views seriously any attempt to disrupt the course of justice in this trial. Any such disruption would be seen as compromising the Defendant’s right to a fair trial and as such would be likely to be deemed as an action In Contempt of Court. Contempt of Court is viewed as a serious offence in all Legal Jurisdictions and it is similarly viewed here, in the Court of Public Opinion.

    Q Whether this said person has supplied the Court with reasons for remaining anonymous.
    A The Court has not been supplied by any person, either privately or publicly, with reasons for such a person or persons appearing in the Court while yet maintaining anonymity.

    Q Request for this person’s removal and exclusion from the Court and for the removal of all references and statements made by this person.
    A Mr Boeder may rest assured that the Court will not allow unidentified/disruptive persons to be present in the Court during the course of this trial. Mr Boeder is advised that the Court’s members are generally speaking, those who by having identified themselves publicly on TT, have thus occupied seats in the Public Gallery – and it is noted that some of these members have also elected to nominate for active courtroom duties. The records of the Court are to be found variously in TasTimes, for example in the original indictment, and subsequently in articles posted by Mrs Allan, the Prosecutor, by Mr Stott, the first Witness, in updates posted by the Court Recorder, Mr Stannus and variously amongst many but not all of the posts which appear in this comments thread. Those posts in which the writer is properly identified and in which the role in which they are acting is clearly stated, become part of the record of proceedings of this Court and will ultimately, post trial, be included in the published transcript of proceedings.

    The Court apologises to Mr Boeder and others generally if this has not previously been made clear as to who is to be regarded as being present in the Court and also as taking part in the proceedings of the Court and as to what is regarded as part of the Court’s present and future documentation. This is hardly surprising – it is indeed both a novel and a difficult matter. The Court thanks Mr Boeder for raising this matter and seeks to throw some further light into the darker corners of this online-public trial:

    THE COURT DOES NOT CONSIST OF those who simply post comments on this thread in the Tasmanian Times. The thread has so far received 89 posts from 23 people, 15 of whom have identified themselves publicly and so have been recognized as members of the Court in the public gallery and of these latter, eight persons have nominated for various roles in the conduct of the trial, one of which indeed, is yourself, Mr Boeder. The Court recognises your commitment and concern in having raised these questions and issues. Of these 23 people who have so far posted on this thread, 8 have provided no proper identification and THUS ARE NOT IN THE COURT, and likewise NOT MEMBERS OF THE COURT and being outside the Court, ARE NOT HEARD BY THE BENCH – neither are their thread comments SEEN BY THE BENCH.

    The Court trusts that this answers your questions, Mr Boeder and further that it has satisfactorily explained its responses to the issues that you have raised. Thank you, Mr Boeder, you may resume your seat.

  116. William Boeder

    August 1, 2009 at 1:16 pm

    If it may please the court Your Honour, I as an observer must question the inappropriate entry, (into this court of public opinion,) by the hostile intended Dave?
    Has this anonymous Dave been granted any particular leave to address the court, then without warrant, to leap forthwith with his unwarranted outrageous statements and critique upon the actual commencement and purposes of this uniquely established court of public opinion?

    No court in the land should allow its conducts purposes and jurisdictions to be meddled with by intruders.
    I William Boeder, as a member observer of this unique court, question the attempt by this aforementioned person to disrupt the proceedings of this court?
    I further wish to question the intended obfuscation of name, of this person, has this person named Dave, (of which there must be thousands of anonymous Dave persons in this State,) given reason for such anonymity?
    As such I would like to see this unwarranted person removed from the court immediately and subsequently banned as a result of his intended obfuscatory and anonymous status, along with all references and statements so made?

    I thank your Honour.

    William Boeder. Recognised Court observer.

  117. Garry Stannus

    July 31, 2009 at 9:26 pm

    JUDGE and COURT RECORDER – Mr Garry Stannus
    Thank you Madam Prosecutor. The Court will now hear from persons who, in compliance with the Rules of the Court (#86), wish to cross-examine the Witness, Mr Clive Stott. Please now make yourselves known to the Court.

    The court remains open for 24 hours from the time of this post’s publication in the Tasmanian Times, for eligible persons to nominate for cross-examination of the witness. In the event that no persons come forward, the court will then call the next witness.

  118. Dave

    July 28, 2009 at 2:16 pm

    Your Honour in reference to your so called Court rules, I am afraid then that I must be heard, as my name is infact Dave, (David) as given to me by my Parents so that totally refutes your claims otherwise. Henceforth I am to be heard, as I have played by your rules.

    Now, and contrary to the notions you have presided upon, the information, questions and comments made are to be dealt with first, since as a matter of Law they must. You havnt dealt with them and so hence I have made the recommendation to the Court’s superiors that a charge of contempt must be brought against you. I am afraid there is no alternative, unless you properly address the matters I have raised as the People of Tasmania’s legal Counsel.

    And yes I have by my various comments addressed the Court that by default I have defended the Minister’s position. The charges as i so rightly and previously expressed have been brought against the incorrect Minister. You must note this and deal with this matter.

  119. Garry Stannus

    July 27, 2009 at 11:52 pm

    JUDGE and COURT RECORDER – Mr Garry Stannus

    ——————————————————————————————————-

    Thank you Mr Stott for your evidence, which the Court notes has been submitted in Comments 67-68 and in Comments 75-81. The Court also notes that this evidence has been presented separately in the form of articles in their own right on TT, firstly in:

    …/first-witness-gives-evidence/

    and secondly in.

    …/Clive_2_final.doc

    ——————————————————————————————————-

    The Court reminds interested parties of its established rules. They are

    RULES OF COURT

    1. All Court positions are open to all members of the Public.
    2. Real names, not pseudonyms, are required in this trial in the TT Court of Public Opinion.

    [exemptions, e.g. for whistleblowers, available. CONTACT garrystannus@hotmail.com]
    3. DISCOVERY is ongoing:
    4. Participants may adopt more than one role – separate comments for separate roles. Please identify in which role you address the Bench.
    5. The Court of Public Opinion operates on the principle of mutual respect – language used will be appropriate and respectful.
    6. All remarks, questions and addresses are to be directed to myself and my colleagues on the bench, with the exception of cross examination
    of witnesses [This is a trial in a public courtroom, not a discussion forum or a chat room].

    ——————————————————————————————————-

    The Court (TTComments#45) dealt with a number of matters brought to its attention by Prosecutor Allan. The Court noted that #44 Blair Trumpet would not be heard, having failed to meet the conditions of Rules of Court 2 and 4. The Court also notes that Dave, in #73, #74, #83 & #85 is not heard by the Court for similar reasons. Implicit in the requirement for real names to be used in this Court of Public Opinion, is the notion that this includes both Given Name and Family Name. Further to this consideration is the issue of clarity of roles and the Court refers the public to Rule 4.

    ——————————————————————————————————-

    The Court expresses mild surprise that there has as yet been found not one person on the island willing to name themselves publicly, and willing to speak in defence of the accused, Michelle O’Byrne. Is there no one present in the Court who is willing to defend the Minister?

  120. Dave

    July 24, 2009 at 10:22 pm

    In answer to our learned friend Rollem, whether what he says is or is not the case, as the matter before the Court has failed to follow due process in dealing with the legal matters I raised before it, and as advised that both his Honour and the Prosecutor are now to face charges of Contempt of Court, the matters you raise are now of little matter. The case has been dismissed.

    If there are serious issues at hand that need dealing with it is clearly that the incorrect Minister was accused, placed on Trial, that the Court failed in its duty to advise the defendant of the need for legal Counsel, and that his Honor failed in empanelling the jury, as it is quite clear that the selected Jurrors were anything but impartial. Henceforth, there was no alternative but for this Trial to be struck down as a Mistrial.

    The trial of his Honour and the Prosecutor should make for interesting copy in the Mucury and the Exagerator.

  121. Rollem Rawhide

    July 24, 2009 at 8:13 pm

    This is a fabulous in-depth and very clear indictment into the despicable inaction of the government. That it has been left to members of the public to fight for basic rights to have their and others health protected, is a confirmation of the inadequacy of proper government care and action for the people of Tasmania. People only need to read the correspondence from the government and industry representatives on the ‘cleanair’ website to see they use standard lines to try and shove the public sideways. Ministers and key industry players can try and hide from the substantiated facts being presented here, however that does not make it any less true.

  122. Dave

    July 24, 2009 at 12:26 pm

    Your Honour

    I must seriously protest. As Legal Council representing the people of Tasmania, you obviously have failed in carrying out your legal obligations to the Court , respect for due process to the Law under Tasmania and therefore ultimately the people of Tasmania.

    In my previous attempt to point out of these matters of Law which must be dealt with appropriately beforehand, I have now been faced with the most difficult situation. You are clearly incapable of upholding the Law of this land, and shown disrespect to the Court and the Law and for your position.

    In view of this it is my duty to advise the Court that I will be recommending to the Chief Magistrate and the Attorrney General that a charge of Contempt of Court must be brought before his Honor and the Prosecutor, and that you yourselves will now face this Court to answer these charges brought against you. I trust I make myself clear.

    Furthermore in failing to acknowledge the most serious issues I brought before this Court it is clear to me that the case now is dismissed since no legal outcome can be derived from the inaccurate and biased evidence being presented.

    I therefore direct the Court for the matter to be stood down. The Jury is dismissed, and all charges are dropped against the accused. Case Closed.

    ALL RISE.

  123. Red Bob

    July 24, 2009 at 2:19 am

    Talk about a waste of bandwidth. Are we supposed to read any of this? Hardly doing any credit to this site.

  124. Garry Stannus

    July 23, 2009 at 7:11 pm

    …/Cont

    PROSECUTOR:
    How did you feel about this outcome as per your answer to my question k) 1. above?

    Mr STOTT
    I always maintained I would take any punishment that was handed out to me. I even commented after the decision was handed down that the decision was fair.
    There certainly were extenuating circumstances in the case and had my health not been ruined to the state it was by all the smoke I might have thought differently how I handled the court matter. Instead I took it on the chin showing I was responsible for my actions which is more than I can say for people like the poorly performing Mr. Brad Arkell and the defendant, Minister Michelle O’BYRNE who ran and hid when they were meant to be responsible for seeing the environment is protected. Shame on them.
    There comes a time when you can only be pushed so far. My body had suffered enough and it was time to do something about it.

    PROSECUTOR:
    In relation to your item l) Correspondence your discovered list is comprehensive. Mr STOTT, would you please tell the jury if there are any specific documents in that discovery to which you wish to draw particular attention, and if so why?

    Mr STOTT
    I wish to draw your attention to a letter from Mr. Warren Jones, Chairman of the EPA on the 22/4/2009. He claims:
    “I appreciate and understand that smoke from planned burns is a concern for the community in areas impacted by smoke. In order to address improved smoke management from planned burns, the EPA is working with the FPA on the implementation of a coordinated Smoke Management Strategy. For a trial period during the 2009 burn season, planned burns are being undertaken as part of this Strategy and in accordance with new Smoke Management Guidelines that have been released.” What a failure!
    Another would be a press release from Michelle O’BYRNE on the 11/5/2009 in regards to coastal vegetation vandalism of all things after her 1000’s of Ha burns on coastal vegetation by PARKS, and FORESTRY TASMANIA under her control. How hypercritical!
    If you want a laugh have a look at Dick Adams MP letters. He lost the plot completely.
    The OMBUDSMAN’s findings and observations re FOI and Tasmania Police after the flare incident make interesting reading.
    There are many other incredibly ridiculous bits of correspondence I have received, BUT, please read the Asthma Page letters to see what a poor organisation they are when it comes to representing people with this disease made worse by planned burn smoke.

    PROSECUTOR:
    Referring to your item m) Links, Mr STOTT, could you please tell the jury of any specific links that you believe are important for their better understanding of the evidence in this trial?

    Mr STOTT
    Madam Prosecutor I would direct the jury to the:
    Environmental Management and Pollution Control Act 1994
    FPA – Smoke Management from Planned Burns 2009
    Discover Tasmania – Gordon Craven
    World Health Organisation (WHO) Air Quality Guidelines
    Tasmanian Air Quality Strategy 2006
    Environment Protection Policy (Air Quality) 2004

    PROSECUTOR:
    Thank you Mr STOTT.

    If it please your Honour.

  125. Garry Stannus

    July 23, 2009 at 7:11 pm

    PROSECUTOR:
    Mr STOTT, when answering my question relating to your item i) Is Smoke Dangerous you told the jury that the Environment Department’s website confirms “the harmful substances in woodsmoke.” In reference to your web- page revelations of “the travel distance for the two sizes of particles that are measured to determine our air quality” you believe a lot of people will be shocked when they read this. Will you now please explain your statement to the jury that you believe “Many people would get a shock when they read this?”

    Mr STOTT
    Because Tasmania has many rural regions, the roads are mostly single lane and it takes awhile to get any distance, people have a notion that anyone that does not live in one of the four major regions lives a long way away. In actual fact no distances are very great ‘as the crow flies’ or as smoke travels in Tasmania. Tasmania is only about 300Km wide and less in height.
    People feel if a large burn is over the hill, it won’t worry them, but how wrong this is. If they are down wind from the source of this particle pollution, or if the wind direction changes like it often does in Tasmania, then their health can be seriously affected when they inhale smoke.
    People need to know that PM10 particulates from these burns can travel up to 100Km and PM2.5 particles (the dangerous ones that go deep into your lungs and stay there) can travel up to a 1000Km+. It would be fair to say that there really is not a place in Tasmania that could be called a “smoke free zone” when planned burns are taking place.
    This is why I believe people would be shocked, because they would not realize ills they might be suffering like asthma, COPD, heart attacks, low birth weights, infant mortality, some forms of diabetes, cancers and so on, could very well be as a result of this smoke and they would not even connect it.

    PROSECUTOR:
    Mr STOTT, in responding to my question relating to your item j) Asthma Foundation you tell of your attempts to dissuade others from supporting the foundation until it is prepared to call for an end to plantation burning. You say its policies are contrary to those of the WHO. Will you now please tell the jury: –
    If you have been notified of any reasons why Asthma Foundation Tasmania (AFT) do not lobby to prevent forestry plantation burning?

    Mr STOTT
    What they say is very clear and the message is very clear that ASTHMA FOUNDATION TASMANIA is not putting asthmatics first; the organisation really is just thinking of themselves and forestry.
    They say in the press, “we can’t become a lobby group”.
    They claim they do not support “the simplistic” idea of demanding a ban.
    They say they are worried about their funding arrangements.

    PROSECUTOR:
    Why you say AFT “are snubbing” the World Health Organisation (WHO)?

    Mr STOTT
    The WORLD HEALTH ORGANISATION is concerned enough about people’s health to announce to the world there is no safe level of fine particle pollution. This statement comes as a result of the best scientists from around the world doing scientific and medical trials. This is what they found.
    ASTHMA FOUNDATION TASMANIA does not subscribe to what the WHO states because it will not call for immediate total bans on what we know are extraordinarily high levels of pernicious particle pollution from planned burning. In effect they are saying it is ok, you are going to have to put up with it because it isn’t going to stop overnight.

    PROSECUTOR:
    Mr STOTT, in responding to my question relating to your item k) Peaceful Demonstration you admitted that you discharged a smoke flare at the defendant O’BYRNE’S electoral office and you told the court that this action came about as a result of the Minister’s refusal to meet with you, in order that you could discuss your health problems with her. Now, I realise you have covered this in your discovered documents, but as a reminder to the jury: –
    Could you tell the court of the outcome to you of discharging the smoke flare at defendant O’BYRNE’S office?

    Mr STOTT
    Because my 60 seconds of smoke received a great deal of attention in the media, I was charged by the police and fined by the court for committing a public nuisance.
    My fine was paid by world known author and psychologist Mr. Steve Biddulph, and the organisation TAP into a Better Tasmania.

  126. Garry Stannus

    July 23, 2009 at 7:10 pm

    …/Cont

    PROSECUTOR:
    To your knowledge, why is the monitoring of the air quality not performed independently of the Tasmanian Government, “who own Forestry Tasmania and support other private forest industries?”

    Mr STOTT
    This government likes to do its own monitoring which I believe might not always be in the best interest of the people. I think it is in the best interests of the GOVERNMENT and the FOREST INDUSTRIES to do their own air monitoring. I am seriously considering purchasing my own monitor and when this was mentioned to the Air Monitoring Division I was informed the readings would not be admissible as court evidence because the readings obtained are only indicative, not 24 hour weighted average. The sampler I propose to purchase is to be the same model as the fifteen new ones Environment Division is at present installing around the state, so what does this say about them?

    PROSECUTOR:
    Why do you say there are deficiencies in the monitoring practices if the high concentrations of forestry smoke only surpassed two PM10 National Air Quality Standards per year?

    Mr STOTT WITNESS ANSWER h) Q. 5 —
    As a person with a strong background in instrumentation I believe a true picture is not being generated as to our air quality.
    Visual Air Quality (VAQ) is a recognized form of determining air quality. By noting how many kilometers away an object can be seen on a clear day, then air quality can be determined on a polluted day.
    If visibility is <20Km but >10Km air quality is unhealthy for sensitive people.
    If visibility is <10Km but >5Km the air quality is unhealthy for all people.
    If visibility is <5Km but >1Km the air quality is very unhealthy.
    If visibility is <1Km the air quality is hazardous.
    This information is sourced from EPA Victoria but is used world wide.
    Now turn your attention to http://www.cleanairtas.com/photos.htm and you will see visibility reduced down to 2Km or less as a result of planned burning and yet the TAMAR VALLEY AIR MONITORING STATIONS do not record these dangerously high pollution levels. This happens time and time again when wood heaters are not being used and yet we are being told our air quality is ok, and that we haven’t breached any National Environment Pollution Measures.
    Something is definitely wrong with the calibration or sighting of our air monitoring stations or the interpretation of readings being supplied to us during the polluting burn season.

    PROSECUTOR:
    Why you have quoted the defendant, Ms. O’BYRNE in this web page and to which you referred in your discovered documents. You use that quote in the context of your claim that “Tasmanian’s are not getting the air quality monitoring they rightly deserve because….” For the benefit of the jury, can you explain in a few words what you understand the defendant Minister O’BYRNE was then saying?

    Mr STOTT
    I believe Minister O’BYRNE was saying air monitoring is being performed at a minimal number of stations in Tasmania using different methods, but none of these provide validated real time data. (I believe this is still to be the case with the new 15 monitoring stations being installed around the state.} Real time air quality readings will only be indicative.

    Cont/…

  127. Garry Stannus

    July 23, 2009 at 7:07 pm

    …/Cont

    PROSECUTOR:
    In relation to your item g) Health Department’s Answer you categorised the State Health Department as inept (my word not yours) for its hands-off approach to the health problems connected to the said burns.
    I note the scan of your discovered document relating to this has no reference to the Tasmanian Department of Health. How can the jury be sure of the source of this document?

    Mr STOTT
    You are right Madam Prosecutor, the document Smoke from Bushfires and Planned Burning does not have a heading and it does not indicate who it was produced by, only a date.
    One time when the smoke was really bad I went into Henty House in Civic Square in Launceston to make a complaint. While the form was being filled out I noticed that document on the wall so I asked could I have a copy. That is how I came upon it.
    I wrote soon after that to Dr. Roscoe Taylor who is Director of Public Health. A copy of my letter can be found at http://www.cleanairtas.com/outwards/Roscoe%20Taylor%2021.6.08.doc Madam Prosecutor, amongst other things, I mentioned the document you refer to. Dr Taylor arranged for his senior medical officer (Dr. Martin Bicevskis, Environmental Health) to visit me at my home to discuss my letter in depth. Dr. Bichevskis acknowledged he had written the document.

    PROSECUTOR:
    Would you please explain to the jury what you see as the difference in the Health Department (DHHS) general warning to Tasmanians, and Dr. Roscoe Taylor’s (DHHS) direct response to you?

    Mr STOTT
    This is now impossible for me to answer. Our Department of Health and Human Services has redone its website and there is not a mention of the effects of environmental smoke on their health pages anywhere. There is not even a mention of Air. Perhaps they got scared when I mentioned litigation could result from the document they put out in g) 1 above, and have ‘thrown in the towel’.

    PROSECUTOR:
    Are you able to provide a source reference to your statement that “The World Health Organisation claims there is no safe level of fine particle pollution”?

    Mr STOTT
    This is an older WHO statement. The World Health Organisation, Global update 2005 – Air quality guidelines for particulate matter, ozone, nitrogen dioxide, and sulphur dioxide, now reads:
    “The risk for various outcomes has been shown to increase with exposure, and there is little evidence to suggest a threshold below which no adverse health effects would be anticipated.”
    In other words there is no known safe level.

    PROSECUTOR:
    In relation to your item h) Air Quality Monitoring — you told the jury of specific weaknesses and shortcomings in the current management of this monitoring. Mr STOTT, would you now please tell the jury
    If it has ever been explained to you why is it not possible to publish up-to-date Air Quality readings?

    Mr STOTT
    The National Environment Protection Measure (Ambient Air Quality) states that air monitoring for PM10 is to be a 24-hour average weighed reading. This involves weighing and conditioning filters before they are put in the air sampler for 24 hours, and then the filter needs to be sent to Hobart and again conditioned before it is weighed, presumably on a micro balance. This after process can take several weeks to arrive at a validated figure as per the NEPM Standard. PM10 readings are required to be carried out as per the NEPM but are only for data gathering purposes and therefore are only indicative readings.

    PROSECUTOR:
    If the readings are so outdated, what do you understand is the benefit of publishing them on the web site months later?

    Mr STOTT
    There is little benefit to me at all. It is a bit like getting a water bill three months after you have had a burst water pipe. Provided you have weeks to wait it can belatedly tell you what happened at a given time on what day. I guess it gives people sitting in an office something to do.

    PROSECUTOR:
    To your knowledge, are the readings available to the public from any other source at an earlier date?

    Mr STOTT
    Readings are available in Tasmania earlier than this from the same air samplers but they are not validated readings and do not comply with NEPM Standards.

    Cont/…

  128. Garry Stannus

    July 23, 2009 at 7:05 pm

    …/Cont

    PROSECUTOR:
    Mr STOTT, when I asked you about your item c) headed Environment’s answer you told the jury that you consider the state Environment Division’s claim that it “is working to address air, noise and water pollution issues” as nonsense. Can you now please tell the jury if you attempted to raise your concern that the Department was NOT working to address air, noise and water pollution issues, with the defendant and Minister responsible, Ms. Michelle O’BYRNE?

    Mr STOTT
    I tried on many occasions to raise my concerns with Minister Michelle O’BYRNE and other politicians at state and federal level. These are documented at http://www.cleanairtas.com/correspo.htm. I do not believe I could do anything more as Michelle O’BYRNE said through her advisor, Mr. Brad Arkell, that she would not meet with me. They made out in the first instance they would do something for me, even to the point of kidding me along that a meeting would take place. When they were pushed for a date, it became clear there would be no meeting and quite frankly because of Mr. Arkell’s changing stories and deliberate ‘smart alec attitude’ I made my mind up I did not ever want to deal with him again.
    This smoke from planned burns has been going on for years and has been even worse in the last few years. I made this clear to them. The government, the forest industries, and in particular Environment have not been working at all to address the shocking quality of our air from planned burning. They are not even prepared to look at different methods to burning that I and others have put to them. For example, masticators could be used which are large mulchers on front end loader type machines, and then there is slow pyrolysis, a process by which decomposition is achieved by exposure to high temperature without oxygen, and gives off useful by-products such as biochar, biofuel, or electricity.

    PROSECUTOR:
    Mr STOTT, in your response to my question about d) Parks & Wildlife Planned burns you told the jury of world experts’ confirmation of the wide-ranging effects. You reminded the jury that the defendant, Minister O’BYRNE has responsibility for Parks & Wildlife hence your claim she is to blame for the consequences of the toxic smoke on your health and well-being.
    Could you please tell the court if, to your knowledge the defendant and Minister responsible, Ms. Michelle O’BYRNE accepts, or accepted as the case may be, that she — as you say “has the responsibility for Parks and Wildlife creating some of it, and our air quality?”

    Mr STOTT
    Michelle O’BYRNE at the time of all this burning was Minister for Environment, Parks and Wildlife to name but two. Being in charge of Parks she was responsible for the smoke that was created from Parks’ planned burning.
    The Minister acknowledges in her Statement of Intent to the EPA “As Minister for Environment, Parks, Heritage and the Arts, I am responsible for administering the Environmental Management and Pollution Control Act 1994.”

    PROSECUTOR:
    Mr STOTT, in your reply to my question about e) Forest Industry’s answer you said Forest Industries’ self-governance “is not working in this state”. Will you please explain to the jury what you mean by your claim that Forest Industries are self-governed?

    Mr STOTT
    The FOREST INDUSTRIES are self-governed when it comes to burning and smoke from those burns. The FOREST PRACTICES AUTHORITY decides who can burn and when they can burn. Obviously our EPA is happy with this because they have entered into an agreement with FPA and handed full authority back to them to manage all smoke complaints from FORESTRY INDUSTRY planned burns. The EPA and FPA are independent to government so for these reasons I say the FOREST INDUSTRIES are self governed.

    PROSECUTOR:
    In your answer to my question about f) Photos you told the jury that these images indicate “how deliberate and careless the forest industry can be when they light smoky burns at a time when wind directions are forecast to push this smoke to populated areas.” Mr STOTT, will you now please tell the jury who took these photos and can that person or persons testify they were taken on the days you specify?

    Mr STOTT
    I took all the photos except one and do testify they were taken on the days stated. The original digital files verify this information. I have only published some of the photos I took on my website.

    Cont/…

  129. Garry Stannus

    July 23, 2009 at 7:03 pm

    …/Cont

    PROSECUTOR:
    Referring to your previous evidence, a) About me you told the ladies and gentlemen of the jury that you believe you are well qualified to speak with authority about the harmful effects of polluting smoke. Now, Mr STOTT, could you please tell the jury —
    If, with your knowledge and experience in dealing with your poor health, you are now able to successfully manage and thus prevent the health troubles associated with particle pollution?

    Mr STOTT
    No, I cannot; please let me explain. I have successfully managed any health problems I have had in the past, apart from planned burn smoke. Even with all my experience in managing asthma all my life I have to admit that it is impossible for me to have my asthma under control during the burn season.
    The only way I know of preventing health troubles associated with particle pollution of this magnitude is to wear a respirator mask when the smoke is about and this means wearing it indoors and outdoors which is far from satisfactory.

    PROSECUTOR:
    Does the advice received from the various authorities you nominate, assist you in the struggle to maintain a healthy breathing schedule?

    Mr STOTT
    Absolutely not. I followed Environmental Health’s advice to the letter and still got really ill. In fact, I had extended talks with one of their officers and explained it was wrong to tell people to stay indoors when smoke levels were high for some time. With the months of high level smoke from these burns, the inside of my house was as polluted by smoke as it was outside. So staying inside affords little or no protection. I could not go outside, I could not open a window for fresh air because there was none, and I could not breathe indoors.
    It is impossible to smoke proof a house at these concentrations.
    Likewise, being told to go into a public building can have the same consequences. Any public buildings that I know of do not have absolute, or hospital grade air filters installed to rid the air of these toxic fine particulates that occur in smoke. These are the harmful ones listed on the environment division’s own website. http://www.cleanairtas.com/issmoke.htm

    PROSECUTOR:
    …When I asked you about your item b) headed Could you live like this? — you told the jury that you wanted people to know just how your life and body had been affected by being forced to breathe the residue or rubbish from plantation activities. Mr STOTT, would you now please tell the jury if, other than the serious health problems you have already detailed, are there other life problems you have suffered as a result of the pollution?

    Mr STOTT
    Every time a person is exposed to an allergy or trigger, and wood smoke is a trigger for many people, they will usually develop a greater intolerance to it. The only way to lessen this over time is to remove the trigger at the source. I have been sensitised to this smoke having breathed so much, and I would expect my heath to be significantly impaired. I suspect (from my association with other lung patients), I will be on supplemental oxygen for the rest of my life and that my lifespan will be reduced, like with any smoker!
    These particles are so fine they can lodge deeply into the lungs and stay there. The smaller ones can cross over into the bloodstream carrying their attached toxins with them. Studies have shown that blood thickens as a result of particle pollution and since my Deep Vein Thrombosis and Pulmonary Emboli, I will now be on blood thinners for the rest of my life and am now classed as a haemophiliac because of reduced clotting factors. For that reason I have to be extremely careful to not injure myself. I have been told the pain in my leg will not go away.
    This environmental particle pollution has been severe enough to affect people’s hearts and cause diabetes. Goodness knows if I will be one of the unlucky ones.
    In addition to the physical pain involved with all this, there is a feeling of despair and the not knowing. Not knowing if and when one is going to get better. Not knowing for example which drugs to take because nothing seems to be working and so on.
    Everything has to go on hold and the emotional worry increases dramatically. Independence was taken away and I found that hard to accept. The financial burden increases with doctors/hospital/ specialists/chemist visits, and being handicapped and having to pay someone to do jobs that normally would be done routinely is no fun. The price is high!
    Cont/…

  130. Garry Stannus

    July 23, 2009 at 7:00 pm

    Clive STOTT, Witness – Answers to Prosecution Interrogatories

    PROSECUTOR
    Now would you please tell the jury about what you say are the “serious health problems” you suffer? If, after a brief explanation, you prefer to refer the jurors to where these are documented, that is permissible.

    Mr STOTT
    After experiencing shocking and prolonged smoke inhalation from planned burning and the resulting confinement, my normally well-controlled asthma has taken a turn for the worst.
    These health problems do not just go away when the smoke stops. It takes a long time to recover and one never recovers completely. Confused with my asthma, I found I had blood clots in my legs and on both lungs. I was not aware this smoke could also thicken the blood until I did some research.
    You can read about this and my heath demise at http://www.cleanairtas.com/about.htm and, [Stott’s website: cleanairtas could you]
    PROSECUTOR
    You say your “serious health problems” occurred as a result of the pollution from forest industry burns. How are you sure these burns did occur on the dates you specify?

    Mr STOTT
    The information comes from the forest industries themselves. FORESTRY TASMANIA has its own website showing what FT burns are taking place and it is updated daily or more often.
    The FOREST INDUSTRIES update their website daily to show where planned burns are to be.
    Not all planned burns eventuate but when a lot of smoke travels on the wind, it is pretty obvious which ones are lit.
    FREEDOM OF INFORMATION has been used to determine which fires were lit on which days.

    PROSECUTOR
    How is it that you can be definite the burns were forestry industry burns?

    Mr STOTT
    Please refer to my previous answer. I think I have explained it there. However, I would like the jury to have a look at [Stott’s website: cleanairtas photos]
    The maps show without doubt the burns were conducted by the FOREST INDUSTRIES.

    PROSECUTOR:
    You allege that the pollution you claim occurred was in the form of smoke. What evidence do you have to demonstrate that?

    Mr STOTT
    I have taken many pictures, some of them can be found at [Stott’s website: cleanairtas photos]
    Many other people have taken pictures as well and they have appeared on Tasmanian Times. Satellite images have captured smoke coming from planned burns.

    PROSECUTOR:
    If, as you say the burns did occur, how do you verify that the pollution/smoke from those burns caused your illnesses?

    Mr STOTT
    We are talking about large smoky burns here. Tasmania is a relatively small place and we have previously established that my health, and that of others, suffers when planned burns are in progress.
    I live in an area that does not have problems from wood heater pollution and yet I get sick every burn season. The environment division and environmental health department in Tasmania in the past have acknowledged on their websites that health and life is at risk from large quantities of smoke. They even mention planned burn smoke.
    I have evidence from environmental health’s senior medical officer that particulate levels were raised at the time I was made ill.
    There is ample scientific evidence on the internet to link wood smoke with disease and illness.

    PROSECUTOR:
    Other than yourself, do you know of any other witnesses to the specific burns to which you refer?

    I believe there might very well be people in this very courtroom that could attest to these burns.
    I will name a Mrs Angelika Allen (who is not in the court) but I am sure would not mind me mentioning her name, as she too has been really sick from all this planned burn smoke and has been keeping a smoke diary.

    Cont/…

  131. Dave

    July 22, 2009 at 8:56 pm

    Your Honour, if I may beg a further indulgence from the Gallery, in addition to my previous comments made to this Court I believe that the views of Maria, Minnie Bannister, Blair Trumpet and Don Davy let alone myself (who is a real person and posting under my own name for the record) are legally quite correct, that a trial with no defendant present, no legal representation, no cross examination of the prosection’s witness is totally invalid and unconstitutional under Australian law and would ask you to so accordingly uphold the law of this Country.

    Failure to do so, as you would be clearly aware would be a derilication in your duties to the Court and the Law and see you being struck off. I am sure you would be aware of this. I would therefore seek that you consider such matters most seriously before permitting this trial to proceed any further.

    Furthermore if you will allow my indulgence, again, under Australian Law it is a legal requirement that the jurors are considered impartial in their opinions before a trial is permitted to commence. I see from their comments made by the jurors to this Trial in seeking to be entered for jury service that no such impartiality exists and hence forth would further seek you to carry out your legal responsibilities in asking them to stand down. No creditble outcome can come from a jury where they have already formed a decision without hearing the evidence, as you would well know.

    Thirdly, and in reference to my earlier comments to the Court, I would contend that the incorrect Minister is in fact on Trial, as the Minister for Forests, Minister Llewellyn has jurisdiction and responsibility for forest burn offs and the smoke such fires create. Hence in closing submission, unless you are willing to amend the charges to include this Minister, I am afraid you have no other option but to stand this case down.

    I thankyou for your time in listening to my submissions.

  132. Dave

    July 22, 2009 at 8:01 pm

    Your Honour

    As a new observer,(I don’t think I could be called a witness) to this most intersting case may I ask two simple questions of you and the Prosecuto. When does the witness(es) get to be cross examined by the defendant’s legal representation, for I thought that under Court procedings this was correct legal procedure in this Country ? And I don’t recall seeing this correct procedure having been followed.

    Secondly, I am not aware that the Minister’s portfolio responsibilities actully relates to Forestry matters and so hence why isn’t this case being taken against the Minister responsible for Forestry Tasmania, given that they and the industry they represent are responsible for the majority of forest regeneration burns?

    At my last check the Minister for Enviroment, has no legal jurisdiction over forest burn offs, apart from Parks ones,and perhaps this is the only area where the case has any validity.

    Regrettably the EMPCA for which the Environment Minister has parliamentary obligations has no jurisdiction over Forest burn offs carried out by Forestry Tasmania or Timber companies such as Gunns.

    Hence I suspect that for the majority of this case it should in fact be stood down and perhaps a new Trial ordered.

  133. Garry Stannus

    July 19, 2009 at 11:28 am

    [Garry Stannus: Judge, Court of Public Opinion]

    Thank you Madam Prosecutor, let the Witness, Mr Clive Stott respond and continue with his evidence.

  134. Garry Stannus

    July 19, 2009 at 11:26 am

    …/Cont

    PROSECUTOR:
    In relation to your item g) Health Department’s Answer you categorised the State Health Department as inept (my word not yours) for its hands-off approach to the health problems connected to the said burns.
    Mr STOTT,
    1. I note the scan of your discovered document relating to this has no reference to the Tasmanian Department of Health. How can the jury be sure of the source of this document?
    2. Would you please explain to the jury what you see as the difference in the Health Department (DHHS) general warning to Tasmanians, and Dr. Roscoe Taylor’s (DHHS) direct response to you?
    3. Are you able to provide a source reference to your statement that “The World Health Organisation claims there is no safe level of fine particle pollution”?

    PROSECUTOR:
    In relation to your item h) Air Quality Monitoring you told the jury of specific weaknesses and shortcomings in the current management of this monitoring.
    Mr STOTT, would you now please tell the jury
    1. If it has ever been explained to you why is it not possible to publish up-to-date Air Quality readings?
    2. If the readings are so outdated, what do you understand is the benefit of publishing them on the web site months later?
    3. To your knowledge, are the readings available to the public from any other source at an earlier date?
    4. To your knowledge, why is the monitoring of the air quality not performed independently of the Tasmanian Government, “who own Forestry Tasmania and support other private forest industries?”
    5. Why you say there are deficiencies in the monitoring practices if the high concentrations of forestry smoke only surpassed two PM10 National Air Quality Standards per year?
    6. Why you have quoted the defendant, Ms. O’BYRNE in this web page and to which you referred in your discovered documents. You use that quote in the context of your claim that “Tasmanian’s are not getting the air quality monitoring they rightly deserve because….” For the benefit of the jury, can you explain in a few words what you understand the defendant Minister O’BYRNE was then saying?

    PROSECUTOR:
    Mr STOTT, when answering my question relating to your item i) Is Smoke Dangerous you told the jury that the Environment Department’s website confirms “the harmful substances in woodsmoke.” In reference to your web- page revelations of “the travel distance for the two sizes of particles that are measured to determine our air quality” you believe a lot of people will be shocked when they read this.
    Will you now please explain your statement to the jury that you believe “Many people would get a shock when they read this?”

    PROSECUTOR:
    Mr STOTT, in responding to my question relating to your item j) Asthma Foundation you tell of your attempts to dissuade others from supporting the foundation until it is prepared to call for an end to plantation burning. You say its policies are contrary to those of the WHO.
    Will you now please tell the jury
    1. If you have been notified of any reasons why Asthma Foundation Tasmania (AFT) do not lobby to prevent forestry plantation burning?
    2. Why you say AFT “are snubbing” the World Health Organisation (WHO)?

    PROSECUTOR:
    Mr STOTT, in responding to my question relating to your item k) Peaceful Demonstration you admitted that you discharged a smoke flare at the defendant O’BYRNE’S electoral office and you told the court that this action came about as a result of the Minister’s refusal to meet with you, in order that you could discuss your health problems with her.
    Now, I realise you have covered this in your discovered documents, but as a reminder to the jury,
    1. Could you tell the court of the outcome to you of discharging the smoke flare at defendant O’BYRNE’S office?
    2. How did you feel about this outcome as per your answer to my question k) 1. above?

    PROSECUTOR:
    In relation to your item l) Correspondence your discovered list is comprehensive.
    Mr STOTT, would you please tell the jury if there are any specific documents in that discovery to which you wish to draw particular attention, and if so why?

    PROSECUTOR:
    Referring to your item m) Links, Mr STOTT, could you please tell the jury of any specific links that you believe are important for their better understanding of the evidence in this trial?

    If it please your Honour.

  135. Garry Stannus

    July 19, 2009 at 11:25 am

    [Garry Stannus – Court Recorder: The Prosecutor, Geraldine Allan has asked the Witness, Mr Clive Stott, a number of follow-up questions. They are published in TT at http://oldtt.pixelkey.biz/index.php?/weblog/article/resumption-of-the-court-of-the-people-of-tasmania/ and recorded below, in two comments]

    xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

    WITNESS EVIDENCE
    Interrogatories – Part 2
    ROLE — PROSECUTOR

    PROSECUTOR:
    CLIVE MALCOLM STOTT I remind you that you are still a sworn witness, as you resume your evidence.
    Following on from your given reasons for establishing a web site, I will ask you some more specific questions.
    1. Now would you please tell the jury about what you say are the “serious health problems” you suffer? If, after a brief explanation, you prefer to refer the jurors to where these are documented, that is permissible.
    2. You say your “serious health problems” occurred as a result of the pollution from forest industry burns. How are you sure these burns did occur on the dates you specify?
    3. How is it that you can be definite the burns were forestry industry burns?
    4. You allege that the pollution you claim occurred was in the form of smoke. What evidence do you have to demonstrate that?
    5. If, as you say the burns did occur, how do you verify that the pollution/smoke from those burns caused your illnesses?
    6. Other than yourself, do you know of any other witnesses to the specific burns to which you refer?

    PROSECUTOR:
    Referring to your previous evidence, a) About me you told the ladies and gentlemen of the jury that you believe you are well qualified to speak with authority about the harmful effects of polluting smoke.
    Now, Mr STOTT, could you please tell the jury
    1. If, with your knowledge and experience in dealing with your poor health, you are now able to successfully manage and thus prevent the health troubles associated with particle pollution?
    2. Does the advice received from the various authorities you nominate, assist you in the struggle to maintain a healthy breathing schedule?

    PROSECUTOR:
    When I asked you about your item b) headed Could you live like this? you told the jury that you wanted people to know just how your life and body had been affected by being forced to breathe the residue or rubbish from plantation activities.
    Mr STOTT, would you now please tell the jury if, other than the serious health problems you have already detailed, are there other life problems you have suffered as a result of the pollution?
    PROSECUTOR:
    Mr STOTT, when I asked you about your item c) headed Environment’s answer you told the jury that you consider the state Environment Division’s claim that it “is working to address air, noise and water pollution issues” as nonsense.
    Can you now please tell the jury if you attempted to raise your concern that the Department was NOT working to address air, noise and water pollution issues, with the defendant and Minister responsible, Ms. Michelle O’BYRNE?

    PROSECUTOR:
    Mr STOTT, in your response to my question about d) Parks & Wildlife Planned burns you told the jury of world experts’ confirmation of the wide-ranging effects. You reminded the jury that the defendant, Minister O’BYRNE has responsibility for Parks & Wildlife hence your claim she is to blame for the consequences of the toxic smoke on your health and well-being.
    Could you please tell the court if, to your knowledge the defendant and Minister responsible, Ms. Michelle O’BYRNE accepts, or accepted as the case may be, that she — as you say “has the responsibility for Parks and Wildlife creating some of it, and our air quality?”
    PROSECUTOR:
    Mr STOTT, in your reply to my question about e) Forest Industry’s answer you said Forest Industries’ self-governance “is not working in this state”.
    Will you please explain to the jury what you mean by your claim that Forest Industries are self-governed?

    PROSECUTOR:
    In your answer to my question about f) Photos you told the jury that these images indicate “how deliberate and careless the forest industry can be when they light smoky burns at a time when wind directions are forecast to push this smoke to populated areas.”
    Mr STOTT, will you now please tell the jury who took these photos and can that person or persons testify they were taken on the days you specify?

    Cont/…

  136. Garry Stannus

    July 12, 2009 at 11:35 am

    ROLE: Judge.

    Madam Prosecutor, do you have any more questions of the witness?

  137. Garry Stannus

    July 12, 2009 at 11:34 am

    [ROLE: Court Recorder]
    Text of Mr Clive Stott’s initial evidence session:

    …/cont.

    i) Is Smoke Dangerous
    The Environment Department’s own website lists the harmful substances in woodsmoke.
    There is a huge amount of properly conducted medical research published on the internet that links serious diseases with particle pollution.
    This page shows the travel distance for the two sizes of particles that are measured to determine our air quality. Many people would get a shock when they read this and would probably blame their sickness on something else.

    j) Asthma Foundation
    I believe the Asthma Foundation should lobby to bring about an immediate end to forestry burning, but they won’t. It disturbs me that children are put on asthma medication (for life in a lot of cases) so forestry can keep burning. Until Asthma Foundation Tasmania actively changes their agenda and calls for an immediate ban of plantation burning I will not support that organisation and will encourage others to do the same. I feel they are snubbing their noses at the World Health Organisation.

    k) Peaceful Demonstration
    I discharged a smoke flare at Minister O’Byrne’s electorate office in Launceston. You must remember I had suffered severely as a result of this smoke inhalation, had trips to hospital, and the Minister had refused to meet with me, and still does. It was to demonstrate what it is like to try and breathe in a respirator whilst enduring smoke and experiencing a prolonged asthma attack.
    You can watch the CCTV tape of the incident released to me under FOI and listen to the audio of my court appearance.

    l) Correspondence
    I believe it is important to keep a record of letters, emails and press releases on the subject of this very harmful environmental pollution. Here you can follow the paper chase.

    m) Links
    This page has amongst other things, links to Acts, Codes, Guidelines and Strategies, etc., connected to environmental smoke. People can come here to locate these. For example it also lists where people in authority can be found; right from the Prime Minister to the Federal Environment Minister, the Hon Peter Garrett. It also has a link to a comprehensive smoke diary from 2008

    n) Forum
    I set up a forum on my website to give people the platform to post issues of concern to them, and to meet others with similar interests.

    If it please your Honour.

  138. Garry Stannus

    July 12, 2009 at 11:32 am

    [ROLE: Court Recorder]
    Text of Mr Clive Stott’s initial evidence session:

    RESUMPTION OF THE COURT OF THE PEOPLE OF TASMANIA

    Commencement of Witness Evidence
    Interrogatories

    ROLE — WITNESS

    PROSECUTOR:
    1. Would you please state your full name?
    CLIVE MALCOLM STOTT

    PROSECUTOR:
    2. Would you please take the oath or affirmation, as you prefer.
    I swear to tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth in this court of public opinion.

    PROSECUTOR:
    3. Mr. STOTT, first of all I refer to your website @ http://www.cleanairtas.com
    In order to acquaint yourself and your situation with the jury, I would like you, if you can to briefly in perhaps one or two sentences, tell the jury why you found it necessary to establish the site and then if you will say a little about each of the following as they appear on that site: –
    The site http://www.cleanairtas.com came about as a result of the public being told no hospital admissions had occurred as a result of the forest industries planned burn smoke when in fact I myself had had four trips to accident emergency with very serious health problems as a result of the pollution from these burns. I wanted the truth to be told. I figured by putting up the site it would allow me to do this and to communicate with other people who were suffering in silence the same I had been. This has certainly proven to be the case with over 5000 hits in the first year, and a huge number of emails.

    a) About me
    This page gives people an understanding of my background and life experiences. This I believe qualifies me to speak with some authority in a practical and technical sense about the harmful effects of this smoke we are needlessly subjected to. Much more so than someone sitting at a desk thinking they are an authority on the matter.

    b) Could you live like this?
    Not being able to breathe is a frightening experience. It is especially frightening for children. In setting up this page I wanted people to know just how my life and body had been affected by being forced to breathe the residue or rubbish from plantation activities.

    c) Environment’s answer
    I found our state Environment Division had some very useful information about the adverse health effects of smoke on its website. I also found out that this information means nothing to the Department and the page may have well been blank because it claimed, “The Department is working to address air, noise and water pollution issues.” I strongly began to believe this was not the case with large scale environmental air pollution coming from the forest industries and affecting so many.

    d) Parks & Wildlife Planned burns
    The amount of smoke generated from one proposed 2253 Ha low intensity burn for example by Parks and Wildlife and Forestry Tasmania would have, according to world experts, wide ranging effects on our people, our water catchments, our animals, our health system, and so on. This smoke is toxic and our Environment Minister, Michelle O’Byrne, has the responsibility for Parks and Wildlife creating some of it, and our air quality.

    e) Forest Industry’s answer
    The Forest Industries have a lot to answer for in Tasmania when it comes to smoke inhalation by the people. They are made up of the private and government forest industries and they make the decisions about when to burn and they take complaints. Self governing is not working in this state as the smoke continues to still be released from the source, to be inhaled by all Tasmanians ands anybody else visiting the state.

    f) Photos
    A picture is worth a thousand words. I thought it would be good to show just how much smoke we have to breathe. People from all around the world have said they will not come to Tasmania until the smoke is stopped. The images also show how deliberate and careless the forest industry can be when they light smoky burns at a time when wind directions are forecast to push this smoke to populated areas.

    g) Health Department’s Answer
    The Department of Environmental Health claims it has no regulatory control over smoke from forestry burning. They acknowledge this smoke is harmful and instead of becoming pro-active to guarantee the good health of Tasmanians they adopt the line of just advising people to take refuge indoors.
    The World Health Organisation claims there is no safe level of fine particle pollution

    h) Air Quality Monitoring
    I have always maintained our air quality monitoring should be carried out by an independent body with NATA certification. In Tasmania we do not have real time validated readings and our intelligence is insulted when readings are released weeks later claiming everything is ok when we have been breathing in toxic pollution.

    …/cont.

  139. Garry Stannus

    July 9, 2009 at 6:57 pm

    [Garry Stannus – JUDGE, Court of Public Opinion]

    Thank you Mr Stott.

    The Court has received Mr Stott’s responses as Witness to the initial questions asked by Prosecutor Allan. The Court invites the Jurors to ask questions now and at any stage during the trial process. It would be appropriate if such questions were directed to the Bench, rather than to the Witness.

    Jurors so far empanelled:
    Ms Shirley Brandie JUROR, WITNESS
    Mr William Boeder JUROR
    Mr Charles Gilmour JUROR
    Mrs Claire Gilmour JUROR

    Using your own name, you may register now as a juror or as any other type of participant in this trial in the Court of Public Opinion. (Use the comments box to do this)

    Clive Stott’s evidence given in response the Prosecutor Allan’s initial questions, can be viewed here: http://oldtt.pixelkey.biz/images/uploads/witness8.7.09.doc

    Mr Stott has sworn to tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth in this court of public opinion and has explained how as a result of forest industry planned burns, he had to go to Accident and Emergency on four occasions last year, 2008. As a result of hearing that no hospital admissions had occurred as a result of the forest industries planned burn smoke, he set up the website http://www.cleanairtas.com
    in the desire, as he said, for “the truth to be told”. He has provided the Court with some background information in respect of himself and provided the Court with information about the difficulties of coping with the effects of exposure to burn smoke. Mr Stott’s evidence questioned Tasmania’s Environment Division’s claim that “The Department is working to address air, noise and water pollution issues.” Instead he noted that such burns have “wide ranging effects on our people, our water catchments, our animals, our health system, and so on.” His evidence was that smoke from planned burns is toxic and that the Environment Minister, Michelle O’Byrne, has responsibility for Parks and Wildlife, and is responsible for whatever harmful effects such burns might create. Mr Stott criticised the bureaucracy’s self-regulated approach on the grounds that it was not working and provided the Court with photographic evidence to support his claims. He saw fit to criticise the State’s Health Department for a hands-off approach to the health problems intendant on these burns and criticised the current regime of air-quality monitoring. Mr Stott cited research linking serious diseases with particle pollution and criticised the Asthma Foundation for not acting to support an end to plantation burning. He has admitted to the Court that he discharged a smoke flare at Minister O’Byrne’s electorate office in Launceston on World Environment Day last year and explained that the offence had come as a result of his smoke inhalation, trips to hospital, and the Minister’s refusal to meet with him to hear his concerns. Mr Stott informed the Court that he keeps extensive relevant records of correspondence, and that his website provides visitors with links to other things, links to Acts, Codes, Guidelines and Strategies, etc., connected to environmental smoke as well as providing a forum for those interested to be better informed by beingenabled to discuss these ‘burning’ issues.

    The Court invites any member of the public willing to come forward and identify themselves, as Counsel for the Defence, using their own names and to do so by submitting this information in the TT comments box as well as questions-as-cross-examination of Clive Stott, this first witness.

    At the same time the Court anticipates Prosecutor Allan’s further questioning of Mr Stott and calls for Madam Prosecutor to supply the Court with her further questions to which the witness will respond.

    The Court will hear from whichever of the Prosecution and Defence as is first to their feet.

  140. Geraldine Allan

    July 7, 2009 at 5:15 pm

    Role PROSECUTOR

    Posts #52-56. GARRY STANNUS – COURT RECORDER posted part 2 of my opening address in sections in accordance with the limits of the TT comments box. I am grateful for his assistance in my absence.

    For some unknown reason, there appears to be a small formatting problem in these records. For those readers who wish to read that section of the opening address unabridged, it appears @
    http://oldtt.pixelkey.biz/index.php?/weblog/article/the-trial-of-michelle-obyrne4/

  141. Garry Stannus

    July 7, 2009 at 10:35 am

    Garry Stannus: Role: Judge, TT People’s Court of Public Opinion.

    Thank you Madam Prosecutor for your suggestion.

    The witness has been called to take the oath or make affirmation and to respond truthfully to the questions that have been and will be put to him. I call on the first witness, Mr Clive Stott, to take the stand and in words of his own choosing, to promise to the Court to tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth.

    Let Mr Stott do so now.

  142. Geraldine Allan

    July 7, 2009 at 12:21 am

    Role— PROSECUTOR

    Thank-you Your Honour.

    This is the People’s Court of Tasmania insofar as citizens are conducting their own Tasmania Times Court in the absence of a more suitable forum as would be desirable to deal with the alleged impropriety and lack of service of one of our elected representatives in the House of Assembly.

    That being so, it is understandable that the witness, STOTT, has shown a partiality for a colloquial term of oath. However, we have previously set formal standards for this court when and where possible, thus it is important that all witnesses adhere to those standards.

    Witnesses may, as they prefer, take the traditional oath swearing to tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth, which subjects the oath-taker to a prosecution for the crime of perjury if he/she knowingly lies in a statement either orally in trial, or a statement given by a witness that is submitted in court in the witness’s absence, or in writing.

    Traditionally the oath concludes “so help me God”, but the approval of a supreme being can be and is, often omitted. The choice is entirely up to the witness.

    The oath is administered at the beginning of any testimony. Thus as PROSECUTOR, I have called on witness STOTT, to take oath or affirmation in item 2 above (#61).

    If it please your Honour.

  143. Garry Stannus

    July 6, 2009 at 10:59 am

    [Garry Stannus – Judge, Court of Public Opinion]

    “MADAM PROSECUTOR, could you remind the Court as to a suitable form of oath that the witness should swear to? The court recalls that the witness showed a predilection to an unusual form of swearing-in, we recall his use of the term ‘Bloody Oath’. Does Counsel consider such an affirmation to be appropriate to the People’s Court?”

  144. Garry Stannus

    July 5, 2009 at 10:11 pm

    [Garry Stannus – Judge, Court of Public Opinion]

    THANK YOU MADAM PROSECUTOR. LET THE RECORD SHOW THAT THE COURT HAS RECEIVED A LIST OF QUESTIONS FROM THE PROSECUTION, THAT THE PROSECUTION CALLS AS ITS FIRST WITNESS, MR CLIVE STOTT, OF GRINDELWALD.

    The Courts further notes that the Defendant has not presented herself to the Court and that no member of the Public has been prepared to appear in the Court on Michelle O’Byrne’s behalf. Let this fact also be recorded.

  145. Geraldine Allan

    July 5, 2009 at 2:51 pm

    RESUMPTION OF THE COURT OF THE PEOPLE OF TASMANIA

    Commencement of Witness Evidence
    Interrogatories

    ROLE — PROSECUTOR

    Thank-you your Honour. I apologise for the delay. Regrettably, I have been unwell and unable to proceed until now.

    Ladies and gentlemen of the jury, I now continue from part 2 of the prosecution opening address, but just before I do I remind you of the charges upon which at the end of this trial, you are duty-bound to make a decision. Those charges are: –

    MICHELLE ANNE O’BYRNE MHA is charged with two offences: –
    1. Failing to discharge her obligations as minister under the Act [Environmental Management and Pollution Control Act 1994 (N0. 44 of 1994)] and with occasioning material and/or serious environmental harm to CLIVE STOTT and RICHARD BUTLER, both of the Tamar valley, by continuing to allow/promote, despite continued requests, various planned burns across Tasmania and pernicious smoke in and around the Tamar valley.

    2. Failing to discharge her duties and honour her obligations as so sworn in the House of Assembly, as an elected representative of the People of Tasmania.

    A further reminder to you ladies and gentlemen — anything I said to you about the evidence in my opening address is not evidence (fact). Evidence is what witnesses say, or evidence tendered through this court.

    I now call on plaintiff Mr Clive STOTT as a witness for examination in chief and ask that before you give your testimony, you take oath swearing truth to your answers to my questions. I remind all witnesses, who appear before this court that breaking an oath (or affirmation) is perjury.

    It is important that the jury has before it the witness’s complete evidence as to the events testified in his documents already discovered and to which he has referred @ http://www.cleanairtas.com/correspo.htm.

    The witness will explain in his own words the full circumstances of the matters about which he is testifying. Of necessity in the circumstances of this trial, there can be no oral evidence; all evidence will be in writing; technical and scientific evidence is available through the plaintiff’s website, as listed in his discovery and as referred to every so often.

    As we move to the next step in the People’s Court trial it is necessary to enter the Q & A stage. Because the questions and answers are in writing they shall be referred to as Interrogatories. That is formal written questions during the legal proceeding and, they are to be answered under oath.

    PROSECUTOR:
    1. Would you please state your full name?
    WITNESS ANSWER:

    PROSECUTOR:
    2. Would you please take the oath or affirmation, as you prefer.
    WITNESS ANSWER:

    PROSECUTOR:
    3. Mr. STOTT, first of all I refer to your website @ http://www.cleanairtas.com
    In order to acquaint yourself and your situation with the jury, I would like you, if you can, to briefly in perhaps one or two sentences, tell the jury why you found it necessary to establish the site and then if you will say a little about each of the following as they appear on that on that site: –
    a) About me

    b) Could you live like this?
    c) 
Environment’s answer
    d) 
Parks & Wildlife Planned burns
    e) 
Forest Industry’s answer
    f) 
Photos
    g) Health Department’s Answer

    h) Air Quality Monitoring
    i) 
Is Smoke Dangerous
    j) 
Asthma Foundation
    k) 
Peaceful Demonstration
    l) 
Correspondence
    m) 
Links
    n) 
Forum
    WITNESS ANSWER:

    If it please your Honour.

  146. Blair Trumpet

    June 28, 2009 at 9:26 pm

    A trial in which there is no representation on behalf of the accused is no trial at all.

    Such an approach represents the worst example imaginable.

    Michelle is too dumb to be able to answer for herself in all of this. She’s just a Labor apparatchik who’s trying to be one of the ‘boys’. She is a pawn, not the Queen.

    Instead of legal posturing with the superficial pretence of fairness, a proper defence should be allowed, if only so debate is more robust, and the various parties respect for due process made apparent.

  147. Nurse Practitioner Jobs

    June 23, 2009 at 1:48 pm

    The air in Sydney is woeful, but they have an Environmental Protection Agency that will crucify anyone that sets fire to a pile of leaves in their backyard.
    Cars and trucks are the big killers there, not fires.

  148. Garry Stannus

    June 23, 2009 at 11:32 am

    GARRY STANNUS – JUDGE, PEOPLE’S COURT OF PUBLIC OPINION

    Thank you Madame Prosecutor, leave is so granted. The proceedings are adjourned till 28 June 2009. The Court will then hear from the Defendant’s Defence Counsel, should one be found, and proceed to the examination of witnesses.

  149. Garry Stannus

    June 23, 2009 at 11:27 am

    GARRY STANNUS – COURT RECORDER: Prosecutor Geraldine Allan’s Opening Address, Part 2, [final] Section (v)
    xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
    Jury members, I acknowledge this introduction to the legal process may have become somewhat tedious for some of you. However, it is necessary for me to draw your attention to these documents, which will become exhibits. As the trial progresses these will become relevant to some witness evidence. 3. The Standing Rules and Orders of the House of Assembly
    I now turn to item 2 of the indictment that alleges the defendant, Michelle O’BYRNE MHA has failed ‘to discharge her duties and honour her obligations as so sworn in the House of Assembly, as an elected representative of the People of Tasmania.’
    This is quite a separate issue to the allegations in item 1 relating to the defendant’s duties as a Minister of the Crown. This second charge alleges that, as well as failing in her duties as the Minister, the defendant has also critically failed to discharge her obligations as an elected representative of the people of Tasmania.

    I submit, your Honour, that this being a People’s Court, the obligations of the elected representative to the people, are most relevant to the charges as alleged.

    I refer in particular to items (c) and (d) in PART 2 of the Standing Orders and Rules, wherein it is stated: –
    PROCEEDINGS ON THE MEETING OF A NEW PARLIAMENT
    2. On the first day of the meeting of a new Parliament, the House having met at the time and place appointed –
    (a) The Governor’s Proclamation shall be read by the Clerk of the House;
    (b) The Writ of Election of each Member, with the Return endorsed thereon, shall be produced by the Clerk of the House, and laid upon the Table;
    (c) Members shall then be sworn or make affirmation as prescribed by law;
    (d) Members will then subscribe to the Code of Ethical Conduct contained in Standing Order No. 3;
    (e) Members will then subscribe to the Code of Race Ethics contained in Standing Order No. 4;
    (f) The House shall then proceed to the election of a Speaker;
    (g) Prior to such election the Clerk shall act as Chair to the House.
    (Highlighting (c) and (d) inserted by Prosecutor, Geraldine Allan)
    Then, ladies and gentlemen of the jury, Standing Order No 3, as above-mentioned in (d), reads: –
    3. CODE OF ETHICAL CONDUCT FOR MEMBERS OF THE HOUSE OF ASSEMBLY
    PREAMBLE
    As Members of the House of Assembly we recognise that our actions have a profound impact on the lives of all Tasmanian people. Fulfilling our obligations and discharging our duties responsibly requires a commitment to the highest ethical standards.
    STATEMENT OF COMMITMENT
    To the people of this State, we owe the responsible execution of our official duties, in order to promote human and environmental welfare.
    To our constituents, we owe honesty, accessibility, accountability, courtesy and understanding.
    To our colleagues in this Assembly, we owe loyalty to shared principles, respect for differences, and fairness in political dealings.
    We believe that the fundamental objective of public office is to serve our fellow citizens with integrity in order to improve the economic and social conditions of all Tasmanian people.
    We reject political corruption and will refuse to participate in unethical political practices which tend to undermine the democratic traditions of our State and its institutions.
    (Highlighting inserted by Prosecutor, Geraldine Allan)

    Your Honour, as I mentioned to the jury members earlier, all documents to which I have referred will be included in a list of exhibits at a later date in the trial.
    That concludes Part 2 of the prosecution opening address. I note that time has got away from me your Honour. Part 3 of the prosecution case will detail the defendant?s alleged failures and how they relate to the documents to which I have referred today. That will take some time, so bearing in mind the limited time remaining today, I believe it wise for the prosecution to break at this point.

    One final point if I may your Honour before the court adjourns today, is a matter of housekeeping ? I wish to notify you that due to family circumstances interstate, I shall be unavailable for this Court from 19th to 27th (inclusive) of June 2009. I seek your indulgence in granting this prosecutor leave of court attendance during that time.

    If it please your Honour.

  150. Garry Stannus

    June 23, 2009 at 11:21 am

    GARRY STANNUS – COURT RECORDER: Prosecutor Geraldine Allan’s Opening Address, Part 2, Section (iv).
    xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
    Ladies and gentlemen, document 2.2) to which I refer above is S.109. Administration of the Act. It reads: –
    Until provision is made in relation to this Act by order under section 4 of the Administrative Arrangements Act 1990 ?
    (a) the administration of this Act is assigned to the Minister for Environment and Land Management; and
    (b) the Department responsible to the Minister for Environment and Land Management in relation to the administration of this Act is the Department of Environment and Land Management.
    The reference to section 4 of the Administrative Arrangements Act 1990 ? refers to the obligation for administration of the Management and Pollution Control Act 1994 (N0. 44 of 1994) until the Governor reassigns responsibility to another Minister or Department, that responsibility remains with the appointed Minister.
    The reason I raise this for your attention ladies and gentlemen of the jury, is that I don?t want you to be confused with recent publicity about the closing down of the Department of Environment, Parks, Heritage and Arts (DEPHA) for which the defendant is the Minister in charge. Although DEPHA has gone, or is going as the case maybe, this rider is as it reads ?Until provision is made in relation to this Act by order under section 4 of the Administrative Arrangements Act 1990 ? the administration of this Act is assigned to the Minister for Environment and Land Management.
    (End of extract)

    Document 2.4) to which I refer above is Part 2A ? Environmental Duties. Ladies and gentlemen of the jury, this section reads as follows: –
    23A. General environmental duty
    (1) A person must take such steps as are practicable or reasonable to prevent or minimise environmental harm or environmental nuisance caused, or likely to be caused, by an activity conducted by that person.
    (2) In determining whether a person has complied with the general environmental duty, regard must be had to all the circumstances of the conduct of the activity, including but not limited to ?
    (a) the nature of the harm or nuisance or likely harm or nuisance; and
    (b) the sensitivity of the environment into which a pollutant is discharged, emitted or deposited; and
    (c) the current state of technical knowledge for the activity; and
    (d) the likelihood and degree of success in preventing or minimising the harm or nuisance of each of the measures that might be taken; and
    (e) the financial implications of taking each of those measures.
    (3) Failure to comply with subsection (1) does not itself constitute an offence or give rise to a civil right or remedy, but if a person has failed to comply with that subsection an environment protection notice may be issued to that person.
    (4) Where a person, in relation to an environmentally relevant activity, takes all measures specified, in a code of practice made and approved in accordance with the regulations, as meeting the requirements for compliance with the general environmental duty in respect of the activity, the person is taken to have complied with the general environmental duty in respect of the activity.
    (End of extract)

  151. Garry Stannus

    June 23, 2009 at 11:17 am

    GARRY STANNUS – COURT RECORDER:
    Prosecutor Geraldine Allen’s Opening Address, Part 2, Section (iii)
    xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
    2. The Sworn Oath, as Minister for Environment and Land Management
    Ladies and gentleman, I now wish to take that allegation a step further and explain to you the legislation that obliges the Defendant, Michelle Anne O?BYRNE, Minister for Environment and Land Management, to ensure all Tasmanians are protected from inappropriate interference with the air quality; that is in this instance her failure to ensure all Tasmanians are not subjected to environmental smoke and the resultant unsafe and injurious particle pollution.
    Then the following part of the allegation is what I will refer to as the second element of item 1 in the indictment. I?ll just remind you of that: –
    Failing to discharge her obligations as minister?
    (I have dealt with that component of the charge in item 1 above as the first part of allegation 1)
    and the second element carries on from those first seven words. It continues: –
    ? under the Act and with occasioning material and/or serious environmental harm to CLIVE STOTT and RICHARD BUTLER, both of the Tamar valley, by continuing to allow/promote, despite continued requests, various planned burns across Tasmania and pernicious smoke in and around the Tamar valley.
    Here, the prosecution is referring to the Ministerial obligations that arise from the defendant?s duties under the Environmental Management and Pollution Control Act 1994 (N0. 44 of 1994). They are: –
    1) S.5. Environmental harm
    2) 109. Administration of the Act
    3) Ss. 13A, 14, 15, 15A, 15B from Part 2 ? Administrative Division, 1 Administration
    4) Part 2A ? Environmental Duties
    5) Other, not yet specified, but may be required as the trial progresses.
    Ladies and gentlemen of the jury I will now explain some of these here because it will help you understand the Ministerial obligations; the others will become exhibits as the trial progresses.

    Document 2.1) to which I refer above is S. 5. Environmental harm. This plainly and without a doubt spells out the difference in interpretation of (a) serious environmental harm and (b) material environmental harm. For your benefit, this section of the Act reads:
    (1) For the purposes of this Act, environmental harm is any adverse effect on the environment (of whatever degree or duration) and includes an environmental nuisance.
    (2) For the purposes of this Act, the following provisions are to be applied in determining whether environmental harm is material environmental harm or serious environmental harm:
    (a) environmental harm is to be treated as serious environmental harm if ?
    (i) it involves an actual adverse effect on the health or safety of human beings that is of a high impact or on a wide scale; or
    (ii) it involves an actual adverse effect on the environment that is of a high impact or on a wide scale; or
    (iii) it results in actual loss or property damage of an amount, or amounts in aggregate, exceeding ten times the threshold amount;
    (b) environmental harm is to be treated as material environmental harm if ?
    (i) it consists of an environmental nuisance of a high impact or on a wide scale; or
    (ii) it involves an actual adverse effect on the health or safety of human beings that is not negligible; or
    (iii) it involves an actual adverse effect on the environment that is not negligible; or
    (iv) it results in actual loss or property damage of an amount, or amounts in aggregate, exceeding the threshold amount.
    (3) For the purposes of subsection (2), “loss” includes the reasonable costs and expenses that would be incurred in taking all reasonable and practicable measures to prevent or mitigate the environmental harm and to make good resulting environmental damage.
    (4) For the purposes of subsection (2), “threshold amount” means $5 000, or if a greater amount is prescribed by regulation, that amount.
    (5) For the purposes of this Act, environmental harm is caused by pollution ?
    (a) whether the harm is a direct or indirect result of the pollution; and
    (b) whether the harm results from the pollution alone or from the combined effects of the pollution and other factors.
    (End of extract)

  152. Garry Stannus

    June 23, 2009 at 11:09 am

    GARRY STANNUS – COURT RECORDER: Prosecutor Geraldine Allen’s Opening Address, Part 2, Section (ii)
    xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
    Jury members, I now continue from part 1. I am going to provide you with further and better particulars to the charges I have just outlined, as they appear in the amended indictment. Please remember in part 1 of my opening address I cautioned you that anything I say to you about the evidence in my opening address is not to be taken as verified evidence (fact). I re-iterate, established evidence is only what witnesses say through the court witness box or, other evidence tendered through the court, for example photographs etc.

    So, my commentary at this time of the trial is so that you will better understand ?
    a) The relevant law that the prosecution allege the defendant has disregarded. The charges arise from the Minister O?BYRNE MHA?s wilful ignoring the plaintiff?s pleas for her assistance, and
    b) The overall context of the case.
    In this segment of the opening address, I intend to deal with three matters: –
    1. The Sworn Oath, as Minister of Executive Council
    2. The Sworn Oath, as Minister for Environment and Land Management
    3. The Standing Rules and Orders of the House of Assembly
    And, ladies and gentlemen, I remind you that you are free to ask his Honour any questions, if you are having difficulty with the legal, or other aspects of this trial as it progresses.
    1. The Sworn Oath, as Minister of Executive Council
    In relation to the first part of the first charge on the indictment, ?Failing to discharge her obligations as minister? ? I direct your attention to the allegation that defendant O?BYRNE has failed to discharge her obligations, and as she so avowed when sworn as a Minister of the Executive Government. This was sworn under the Promissory Oaths Act, 1869, Part II, Item 5, and it reads: –
    “I, Michelle Anne O?BYRNE being chosen and admitted of His Majesty’s Executive Council of this State, do swear that I will, to the best of my judgment, at all times when thereto required, freely give my counsel and advice to the Governor or officer administering the Government of this State for the time being, for the good management of the public affairs of this State: that I will not directly or indirectly reveal such matters as shall be debated in Council and committed to my secrecy, but that I will in all things be a true and faithful councillor. So help me God.”
    Ladies and gentlemen of the jury, the taking of that oath came about as Item 8, of the same part of the Promissory Oaths Act, which reads: –
    8. Persons to take executive councillor’s oath
    The executive councillor’s oath shall be taken by every person who is appointed a Member of the Executive Council of this State, so soon as may be after his acceptance of such appointment; and such oath shall be tendered by the Clerk of the Executive Council, and taken in the presence of the Governor or otherwise as the Governor directs.
    Jury members, that is the overriding legislation to which we refer when alleging the defendant has failed to discharge her obligations as a minister. All Ministers of the Tasmanian Parliament are obligated under the executive councillor?s oath.
    It is the People of Tasmania?s contention that the defendant has critically failed to discharge her obligations as a Minister so appointed under the Promissory Oaths Act 1869 insofar as she has failed to: –
    a) Adequately inform the Governor-in Council of her inability to fulfil her Ministerial obligations as sworn, and
    b) To remain faithful to her responsibilities arising from her sworn duty.

  153. Garry Stannus

    June 23, 2009 at 11:05 am

    GARRY STANNUS – COURT RECORDER
    [entering Part 2 of the Prosecutor’s Opening Address into the Court Record – due to size constraints, this will be done in several ‘comment’ blocks]
    xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

    “GERALDINE ALLAN. Opening Address, Part 2. The court resumes after adjournment.
    Thank-you your Honour for ruling on that preliminary point.
    Ladies and gentlemen of the jury, you have just read that His Honour has approved my amendments to the indictment.

    Just to be clear members of the jury, ordinarily these preliminary matters such as the appropriateness of the charges and whether there should be change to the indictment would be dealt with in pre-trial hearings and compulsory conferences and those hearings are usually privileged.

    However, in this instance of the People?s Court of Tasmania all discussion is open to the public, and thus must be conducted in this ? an open forum, in fairness to both the prosecution and defence.

    Regrettably, because the defendant has failed to lodge a defence there has not been a plea of ?guilty? or ?not guilty?. That is there has been no plea at all. Nor has the defendant provided this court with any disclosures/discovery.

    Your Honour the prosecution now proceeds reminding the jury that the defendant has a right to remain silent and that it (the prosecution) must establish beyond reasonable doubt the guilt of the accused without any assistance from the accused.

    The amended indictment now reads: –

    MICHELLE ANNE O?BYRNE MHA is charged with two offences: –
    1. Failing to discharge her obligations as minister under the Act [Environmental Management and Pollution Control Act 1994 (N0. 44 of 1994)] and with occasioning material and/or serious environmental harm to CLIVE STOTT and RICHARD BUTLER, both of the Tamar valley, by continuing to allow/promote, despite continued requests, various planned burns across Tasmania and pernicious smoke in and around the Tamar valley.
    2. Failing to discharge her duties and honour her obligations as so sworn in the House of Assembly, as an elected representative of the People of Tasmania.”

  154. Garry Stannus

    June 19, 2009 at 11:48 am

    THE COURT RECOGNISES MR DON DAVEY IN THE PUBLIC GALLERY.

    The Court notes that Mr Davey is presently unable to fulfill a role in the trial beyond that of being a member of the Public Gallery. The Court leaves open the opportunity for Mr Davey to nominate for one or more positions at a later date. With regard to Mr Davey’s reference to the absence of a Defence Counsel, the Court shares his concern.

    Let it be noted that it is the intention of this Court of Public Opinion that the Trial of Michelle O’Byrne will proceed along the following lines:
    1 Initial proceedings, public notice of charges, formal notification and ongoing discovery of evidence.
    2 Ongoing enrolment of Counsel, Court Officers, Jurors etc
    3 Prosecutor’s Opening Address
    4 Defence Counsel’s Response
    5 Examination of Witnesses, Cross examination,
    6 Jurors’ ongoing ability to ask questions of the Court
    7 Argument
    8 Counsels’ Closing Addresses
    9 Judge’s advice to the Jury
    10 Jury retirement to consider its verdict
    11 The verdict, Discharging/Sentencing of the Defendant, Discharge of Jury.
    LET IT BE NOTED THAT THE TRIAL IS CURRENTLY AT THE ABOVE ‘STAGE 3 – Prosecutor’s Opening Address’

    The Court repeats its call for the Defendant to appear in the Court to answer the charges.
    The Court repeats its call for Citizens to come forward and nominate for the role of Counsel for the Defence.
    The Court advises that all people appearing before it must do so under their real names (unless given special permission by arrangement of the Court)

    THE COURT RECOGNISES MRS CLAIRE GILMOUR AND MR CHARLES GILMOUR IN THE PUBLIC GALLERY AND AS PARTICIPANTS AS JURORS IN THE TRIAL

    PROSECUTOR’S REQUEST TO ADD TO AND AMEND THE CHARGES
    The Prosecutor has given as reasons for seeking to vary and amend the charges as listed in the original indictment:
    1 removal of ambiguity, clarification of terms contained in indictment
    2 correction of weakness in original charge – omission of necesary element.
    While not necessarily finding itself in agreement with all the Prosecution’s reasoning, the Court does agree that the insertion of the words “pernicious smoke” will serve to clarify matters and secondly, that it is at first sight, reasonable to link the performance of Ministerial duties with the underlying responsibilites of the said Minister as a Member of the Parliament.
    The Court notes the provision in various Codes, of discretion to vary/amend the original terms of indictment. (e.g., see Criminal Code Act 1924 s326(1) and “Pre-trial Case Management and Trial Procedure for Trials on Indictment – http://www.lrc.justice.wa.gov.au/2publications/reports/P92-CJS/consults/4-7indictment.pdf” ) With these in mind the Court intends to so order that the original charges be varied/amended as requested by the Prosecution. The Court would prefer to hear argument from Counsel for the Defence, but in the absence of such, is decided to proceed with the trial.

    Please proceed, Madam Prosecutor, with the charges varied and amended as requested.

  155. Geraldine Allan

    June 16, 2009 at 6:54 pm

    ROLE — PROSECUTOR

    Response to your Honour’s questions before the adjournment

    Thank you your Honour. Before the adjournment you requested that I provide reasons for the prosecution seeking to (1) vary and (2) add to — that is amend, the charges as listed in the original indictment. I now provide reasons for that request.

    Amendment 1
    It is obvious to the prosecution that the original indictment listing of charges is imprecise and ambiguous in the statement of allegation. The specific words to which the plaintiffs seek amendment read: –
    … DESPITE CONTINUED REQUESTS, VARIOUS PLANNED BURNS AND IN AND AROUND THE TAMAR VALLEY.

    Your Honour, the prosecution wishes to remove any ambiguity from the original charges as follows: –
    1. The intention is that by inserting the words “across Tasmania” — that will deal with the fact that plaintiff STOTT and others who join him in the allegations, do not confine themselves to “in and around the Tamar Valley”

    2. By inserting the words “pernicious smoke” it will clarify the fact that plaintiff STOTT and others who join him in the allegations, see the need to more specifically define their allegations about smoke pollution from the various planned burns across Tasmania. The smoke is best described as “pernicious” meaning it is harmful and dangerous.

    Amendment 2
    Your Honour in seeking to extend the charges by the addition of charge 2 as listed, the prosecution believes that the original indictment listing of the allegation is incomplete and perhaps misleading insofar as it selectively refers to the obligations of defendant O’BYRNE as a minister, and erroneously (honest mistake) omits her obligations as an elected representative.

    The specific addition to the indictment of which the plaintiff seeks your approval, reads: –
    FAILING TO DISCHARGE HER DUTIES AND HONOUR HER OBLIGATIONS, AS SO SWORN IN THE HOUSE OF ASSEMBLY, AS AN ELECTED REPRESENTATIVE OF THE PEOPLE OF TASMANIA.

    As I have already alluded to, the prosecution believes your Honour, that the proposed charge 2 was omitted from the original indictment in error.

    I’ll explain the oversight further. Before defendant O’BYRNE was appointed and sworn as a Minister, she was appointed and sworn as a Member of the House of Assembly (MHA). It is absurd to believe any person can be appointed as a minister in government, if they are not already either an MHA or Member of the Legislative Council (MLC).

    If you accept the above fact your Honour, it seems to the prosecution that if we refer to and focus on, the legislative and other obligations of the defendant as a Minister, it is necessary to include her parallel obligations as an MHA. The prosecution submits that in this instance, the two go hand in hand. That is — elected persons can have MHA obligations without Ministerial responsibilities, but not vice-versa. There is no opening for Ministerial obligations unless already sworn as an MHA or MLC. These roles also carry obligations separate to ministerial obligations.

    Thus for the sake of completeness, it is considered necessary to amend the original charges.

    For these reasons your Honour, the prosecution seeks your indulgence before I proceed with part 2 of my opening address.

    If it please your Honour.

  156. don davey

    June 16, 2009 at 4:34 pm

    (47)

    Whilst at this time I am not able to take part in this exercise, and in the absence of a defence ! I feel that “BLAIR TRUMPET” indeed has made a valid point and should someone be appointed as “Defence Council” then perhaps he or she is willing to accept that position.

    d.d.

  157. Garry Stannus

    June 16, 2009 at 4:15 pm

    THANK YOU MADAM PROSECUTOR. BEFORE YOU CONTINUE WITH THE SECOND PART OF YOUR ADDRESS, I WOULD LIKE TO DEAL WITH YOUR REQUEST TO ADD TO THE CHARGES ON WHICH THE MINISTER WAS BROUGHT TO THIS COURT.
    You have asked that the court allows the Prosecution to amend the original charges in the People of Tasmania’s case, by the addition of the words in lower case “across Tasmania” and “pernicious smoke” so that the indictment now reads: –

    “MICHELLE ANNE O’BYRNE MHA IS CHARGED WITH FAILING TO DISCHARGE HER OBLIGATIONS AS MINISTER UNDER THE ACT AND WITH OCCASIONING MATERIAL AND/OR SERIOUS ENVIRONMENTAL HARM TO CLIVE STOTT AND RICHARD BUTLER, BOTH OF THE TAMAR VALLEY, BY CONTINUING TO ALLOW/PROMOTE, DESPITE CONTINUED REQUESTS, VARIOUS PLANNED BURNS across Tasmania AND pernicious smoke IN AND AROUND THE TAMAR VALLEY.”

    Also, you have sought to extend the charges insofar as the Defendant, Minister O’Byrne MHA, be further charged with the following: –
    “FAILING TO DISCHARGE HER DUTIES AND HONOUR HER OBLIGATIONS, AS SO SWORN IN THE HOUSE OF ASSEMBLY, AS AN ELECTED REPRESENTATIVE OF THE PEOPLE OF TASMANIA.”

    Madam Prosecutor. You have also requested an adjournment prior to continuing with the second part of your address. Before deciding on your request, the Court must determine the appropriate path to follow in this beginning case, of the Court of Public Opinion.
    As of yet, there has been no appearance by the Defendant in the Court to respond to the charges as they stand, and there has been no appearance by any persons, learned or otherwise, acting on the Minister’s behalf. This is a regrettable state of affairs and one in which I am loathe to proceed.
    I note that the Defendant has received Notice of these proceedings, delivered to her Offices in Launceston, that she is in receipt of an electronic copy of same and further that there is no reply to either, nor indeed, any attempt to present herself in the Court, or to have any learned persons appear here on her behalf.

    THE COURT NOTES THAT
    Minister O’Byrne, having been served notice in person and by electronic means, has failed to present herself in the Court and has not made a plea in response to the charges. The Court is of the mind to proceed with the trial of the Minister in absentia, and is willing to hear from anyone willing to defend her, albeit in her absence.”

    THE COURT ASKS: IS THERE NO ONE PREPARED TO COME FORTH UNDER THEIR OWN NAME AND DEFEND THIS MINISTER AGAINST THE SERIOUS CHARGES THAT HAVE BEEN BROUGHT AGAINST HER?

    MADAM PROSECUTOR: YOU HAVE REQUESTED A VARIATION OF/ADDITION TO THE CHARGES AGAINST THE MINISTER.
    The Court requests that you furnish reasons for this submission, and the Court further requests that argument from the point of view of the Defendant be submitted to the Court.

    The Court again RENEWS ITS CALL:
    for citizens to come forward and nominate themselves for service as Participants. Choose your own roles! BUT … you must come to the Court under your own name, show respect and help the cause of justice in the Court of Public Opinion.

    IN CONSIDERATION OF THESE MATTERS, PROSECUTION’S REQUEST FOR AN ADJOURNMENT IS GRANTED. THE COURT HOPES THAT FOLLOWING RESUMPTION, MADAM PROSECUTOR WILL PRESENT THE SECOND PART OF HER ADDRESS TO THE COURT AND HOPES TOO BY THE END OF WHICH, THERE WILL BE PRESENT IN THE COURT THE DEFENDANT/PERSONS TO REPRESENT HER.
    PLEASE NOTE: #44 Blair Trumpet will not be heard by this court,
    [RULES OF COURT – Trial_of_Michelle_OByrne_-_Weekend_Reading.doc]
    Please identify in which role you address the Bench.
    #44 All participants must appear under their real name (unless as previously allowed for) and must identify in what role they appear. #44 has not met the conditions of rules 2 and 4.

  158. Blair Trumpet

    June 16, 2009 at 3:13 pm

    A misunderstanding here it seems. I was not trying to ‘appear’ or ‘be heard’ by this star chamber. I was pointing out to the public gallery, at a time when the court was not in session, that there is no-one appearing for the defence.

    Since there is no-one arguing for the defence I maintain that this is not a trial at all, it is just a series of finger pointers making assertions that cannot be challenged.

    Where’s the fun in that?

  159. Claire and Charles Gilmour

    June 16, 2009 at 1:52 pm

    We, Charles and Claire Gilmour would both like to nominate ourselves as jurors in the trail of Michelle O’Byrne.

  160. Garry Stannus

    June 16, 2009 at 10:16 am

    THANK YOU MADAM PROSECUTOR. BEFORE YOU CONTINUE WITH THE SECOND PART OF YOUR ADDRESS, I WOULD LIKE TO DEAL WITH YOUR REQUEST TO ADD TO THE CHARGES ON WHICH THE MINISTER WAS BROUGHT TO THIS COURT.
    You have asked that the court allows the Prosecution to amend the original charges in the People of Tasmania’s case, by the addition of the words in lower case “across Tasmania” and “pernicious smoke” so that the indictment now reads: –

    “MICHELLE ANNE O’BYRNE MHA IS CHARGED WITH FAILING TO DISCHARGE HER OBLIGATIONS AS MINISTER UNDER THE ACT AND WITH OCCASIONING MATERIAL AND/OR SERIOUS ENVIRONMENTAL HARM TO CLIVE STOTT AND RICHARD BUTLER, BOTH OF THE TAMAR VALLEY, BY CONTINUING TO ALLOW/PROMOTE, DESPITE CONTINUED REQUESTS, VARIOUS PLANNED BURNS across Tasmania AND pernicious smoke IN AND AROUND THE TAMAR VALLEY.”

    Also, you have sought to extend the charges insofar as the Defendant, Minister O’Byrne MHA, be further charged with the following: –
    “FAILING TO DISCHARGE HER DUTIES AND HONOUR HER OBLIGATIONS, AS SO SWORN IN THE HOUSE OF ASSEMBLY, AS AN ELECTED REPRESENTATIVE OF THE PEOPLE OF TASMANIA.”

    Madam Prosecutor. You have also requested an adjournment prior to continuing with the second part of your address. Before deciding on your request, the Court must determine the appropriate path to follow in this beginning case, of the Court of Public Opinion.
    As of yet, there has been no appearance by the Defendant in the Court to respond to the charges as they stand, and there has been no appearance by any persons, learned or otherwise, acting on the Minister’s behalf. This is a regrettable state of affairs and one in which I am loathe to proceed.
    I note that the Defendant has received Notice of these proceedings, delivered to her Offices in Launceston, that she is in receipt of an electronic copy of same and further that there is no reply to either, nor indeed, any attempt to present herself in the Court, or to have any learned persons appear here on her behalf.

    THE COURT NOTES THAT
    Minister O’Byrne, having been served notice in person and by electronic means, has failed to present herself in the Court and has not made a plea in response to the charges. The Court is of the mind to proceed with the trial of the Minister in absentia, and is willing to hear from anyone willing to defend her, albeit in her absence.”

    THE COURT ASKS: IS THERE NO ONE PREPARED TO COME FORTH UNDER THEIR OWN NAME AND DEFEND THIS MINISTER AGAINST THE SERIOUS CHARGES THAT HAVE BEEN BROUGHT AGAINST HER?

    MADAM PROSECUTOR: YOU HAVE REQUESTED A VARIATION OF/ADDITION TO THE CHARGES AGAINST THE MINISTER.
    The Court requests that you furnish reasons for this submission, and the Court further requests that argument from the point of view of the Defendant be submitted to the Court.

    The Court again RENEWS ITS CALL:
    for citizens to come forward and nominate themselves for service as Participants. Choose your own roles! BUT … you must come to the Court under your own name, show respect and help the cause of justice in the Court of Public Opinion.

    IN CONSIDERATION OF THESE MATTERS, PROSECUTION’S REQUEST FOR AN ADJOURNMENT IS GRANTED. THE COURT HOPES THAT FOLLOWING RESUMPTION, MADAM PROSECUTOR WILL PRESENT THE SECOND PART OF HER ADDRESS TO THE COURT AND HOPES TOO BY THE END OF WHICH, THERE WILL BE PRESENT IN THE COURT THE DEFENDANT/PERSONS TO REPRESENT HER.
    PLEASE NOTE: #44 Blair Trumpet will not be heard by this court,
    [RULES OF COURT – Trial_of_Michelle_OByrne_-_Weekend_Reading.doc]
    Please identify in which role you address the Bench.
    #44 All participants must appear under their real name (unless as previously allowed for) and must identify in what role they appear. #44 has not met the conditions of rules 2 and 4.

  161. Blair Trumpet

    June 13, 2009 at 4:38 pm

    While I acknowledge that this approach is an interesting one, it seems that no-one is speaking in Ms Byrne’s defense. There are 3 key underpinnings in Ms Byrne’s defense.

    1) Ms Byrne is not responsible for Labor policy, which is a matter for their caucus. Caucus policies of course are necessarily devised to protect the Labor party first and foremost, and one means of doing that is to assure that large industries and donors have a suitable resting place for excess monies while not unduly influencing government. The Labor party offers such a safe haven and co-incidentally a policy to keep forestry in jobs no matter the public cost

    2) Ms Byrne has taken an oath to the Labor party itself, and that oath transcends any other oath that she may take. Differences between loyalty to the party and loyalty to the public are reconciled with the assertion that what is good for the Labor party is, ipso facto, good for the public and for Tasmania.

    3) Ms Byrne cannot control, nor is she responsible for, the actions of Forestry Tasmania which is an independent entity that operates to external market requirements and clearly conforms to Labor party policy.

    As an ancillary point, there is no evidence that the health problems referred to herein are caused by smoke created by Forestry Tasmania’s actions. There could be household bonfires involved and all sorts of other sources of smoke that are creating the supposed health consequences, and whose source is hidden in the general ‘healthy’ plume from forestry’s caring regeneration burns.

    There is a strong case, for the reasons described herein, that mitigates against Ms Byrne’s guilt in this matter.

    One could argue that a duly constituted court would look carefully at both sides of the story, just as Forestry looks at both sides of issues brought to it. Until that is done this kangaroo star chamber remains invalid and unconstitutional.

  162. Geraldine Allan

    June 13, 2009 at 3:48 pm

    ROLE — PROSECUTOR
    Opening Address – Part 1

    Thank-you your Honour.

    I appear on behalf of the People of Tasmania, along with any other persons who may wish to join the prosecution.

    Ladies and gentlemen, this is the People of Tasmania’s case, but before I outline it in detail, there are a few basic principles that I would like to discuss and a few legal issues in relation to the indictment.

    First of all, this trial really consists of two parts. There are questions of fact, and questions of law. His Honour decides all questions of law. At the end of the case his Honour will sum up for you and, if required direct you to what the law is in relation to any questions asked about matters of law.

    In relation to the facts, however, you the jury, decide all questions of fact and what this means is that it is your duty as far as you can determine, to make your mind up about which witnesses are telling the truth, those witnesses that may be mistaken and indeed those witnesses that may be lying. So, in other words, it’s your job to decide what happened in this case and at the end of trial his Honour will direct you, as I said, in relation to any questions of law. You have to accept his Honour’s ruling on that. You apply what you decide the facts are to the law and you then determine whether the accused is guilty or not guilty of any charges in the indictment.

    Now, it therefore follows ladies and gentlemen, anything I say to you about the evidence in this opening address is not evidence. Evidence is what witnesses say, or evidence tendered. But in making an opening address to you it is necessary for me to tell you something about the law that may be applicable in this case, and something about the evidence the People of Tasmania intend to call, so that you will understand the overall context of the case.

    For example, one or more of our witnesses will tender photographs as evidence, and thus by my outline, you will understand what the photographs are relevant to.

    The indictment of the charge was first published by Mr Garry Stannus #8 @
    http://oldtt.pixelkey.biz/index.php/weblog/comments/the-trial-of-michelle-obyrne/

    Ladies and gentlemen, an indictment is just a formal document that charges the accused, a bit similar to a summons in the Court of Petty Sessions for a speeding camera ticket, but here in the Tasmanian People’s Court of Public Opinion, we call it an indictment.

    Now, as you can see from the indictment, the accused, MHA Minister Michelle O’Byrne is charged with: –
    MICHELLE ANNE O’BYRNE IS CHARGED WITH FAILING TO DISCHARGE HER OBLIGATIONS AS MINISTER UNDER THE ACT AND WITH OCCASIONING MATERIAL AND/OR SERIOUS ENVIRONMENTAL HARM TO CLIVE STOTT AND RICHARD BUTLER, BOTH OF THE TAMAR VALLEY, BY CONTINUING TO ALLOW/PROMOTE, DESPITE CONTINUED REQUESTS, VARIOUS PLANNED BURNS AND IN AND AROUND THE TAMAR VALLEY.

    I seek, your Honour, to amend the original charges in the People of Tasmania’s case, by the addition of the words in lower case “across Tasmania” and “pernicious smoke” so that the indictment now reads: –

    MICHELLE ANNE O’BYRNE MHA IS CHARGED WITH FAILING TO DISCHARGE HER OBLIGATIONS AS MINISTER UNDER THE ACT AND WITH OCCASIONING MATERIAL AND/OR SERIOUS ENVIRONMENTAL HARM TO CLIVE STOTT AND RICHARD BUTLER, BOTH OF THE TAMAR VALLEY, BY CONTINUING TO ALLOW/PROMOTE, DESPITE CONTINUED REQUESTS, VARIOUS PLANNED BURNS across Tasmania AND pernicious smoke IN AND AROUND THE TAMAR VALLEY.

    Also, your Honour I seek to extend the charges insofar as the Defendant, Minister O’Byrne MHA, is further charged with the following: –

    FAILING TO DISCHARGE HER DUTIES AND HONOUR HER OBLIGATIONS, AS SO SWORN IN THE HOUSE OF ASSEMBLY, AS AN ELECTED REPRESENTATIVE OF THE PEOPLE OF TASMANIA.

    I now seek to adjourn and when the court resumes I shall present Part 2 of the prosecution’s opening address.

    If it please your Honour.

  163. Garry Stannus

    June 12, 2009 at 7:47 pm

    THE COURT:
    1. ACKNOWLEDGES THE SUBMISSION OF FURTHER EVIDENCE FROM MS SHIRLEY BRANDIE AND MR CLIVE STOTT,

    2. ACCEPTS THE NOMINATION OF MRS GERALDINE ALLAN AS PROSECUTOR

    3. DECLINES WITH REGRET THE SUBMISSION RECEIVED IN THE NAME OF “minnie BANNISTER” (#39) – THE COURT HAS MADE IT CLEAR THAT IT CAN ONLY RECEIVE INTO THE COURTROOM REAL PERSONS, WITH REAL NAMES, UNLESS THROUGH EXTENUATING CIRCUMSTANCES, THE COURT HAS APPROVED A REQUEST FOR ANONYMOUS STATUS, OR UNTIL SUCH TIME AS THE COURT RECEIVES INDICATION THAT MS BANNISTER IS AN ACTUAL PERSON. THE COURT IS HOWEVER, INCLINED TO ACCEPT THE SAME EVIDENCE PROFERRED, IF SOMEONE KNOWN TO THE COURT IS WILLING TO COME FORWARD.

    4. THE COURT ACCEPTS THE NOMINATION OF MR WILLIAM BOEDER AS JUROR.

  164. Shirley Brandie

    June 12, 2009 at 6:08 pm

    Your Honour, I would also like to add:
    I’ve had people tell me that they believe wood burning is safe as our forefathers heated their homes with wood, and breathed it daily. My response to them is that our forefathers had no other options. Also, many of them died at a very early age of ‘undetermined’ causes. Today, we know that some of those premature deaths most likely were from inhaling particulate matter, leading to various conditions that can result in death.
    I do believe that this information shows that, if the release of smoke continues in the manner it has, that the residents are living in a very dangerous situation. Already we can see that it is sickening people. As a witness, I am glad to see this come to trial.

  165. William Boeder

    June 11, 2009 at 10:32 pm

    I William Boeder make address to The Court of Public Opinion.

    I would like to offer my nomination for a seat in the jury, re: the case, The Public Trial of Ms. Michelle O’Byrne, State Minister for the Environment. Tasmania.

    Thank-you.

    William Boeder.

  166. minnie Bannister

    June 11, 2009 at 6:23 pm

    With regards comments #12 and 22 by Maria claiming that these burns are by Parks in the National Park. I checked on the Sentinel site (which uses satellites to monitor fires in Australia: sentinel.go.gov.au) and found that the 4 fires producing the smoke, that made it all the way to the Tamar valley around this time are not within the National Park but were along Browns Creek in the State Forest and Sheepwash Creek on private property all in recently logged areas I suspect.

    With all these satellites watching us my Henry only ventures outside on cloudy days because he is a very private person.

  167. Geraldine Allan

    June 11, 2009 at 6:09 pm

    Role — PROSECUTOR

    Your Honour, I seek your indulgence.

    As I understand the timeline set for this trial, the defendant Ms. Obyrne was afforded 7 days to lodge her defence.

    Could you please advise if any defence has been received in this court.

    The time for lodgment expired at 12 noon this day.

    If the defendant remained defiant to this court at that time, I seek your permission for the trial to proceed in her absence.

    Are there any further instructions before we proceed, Your Honour?

  168. Clive Stott

    June 11, 2009 at 5:31 pm

    Clive Stott – Witness

    Your Honour,
    Evidence has previously been submitted to show Minister O’Byrne is responsible for many deliberate acts of particle pollution across our lovely state.
    Credible scientific evidence can be found at http://www.cleanairtas.com/
    to show the life time and travel distances of these harmful smoke particles.
    On this basis almost every Tasmanians health has been put at risk and their lifespans have been shortened.

  169. Shirley Brandie

    June 11, 2009 at 2:39 pm

    Thank you, your Honour, and I would also like to submit some other evidence:
    Burning wood is a costly and filthy affront to all that are invaded by it. Exposure to the smoke is extremely uncomfortable and causes burning eyes, dry and sore throat, irritation of the nasal passages, cardiovascular system damage, causes some types of cancer and brain damage, headaches, and allergic reactions, among other symptoms.
    When smoke is prevalent in the area, people cannot open their windows for fresh air, because there is none. They cannot enjoy their own property due to the stench. Everyone should be able to relax in their own homes without the fear that they are being contaminated by toxic smoke. It is an environmental right of all people.

  170. Garry Stannus

    June 11, 2009 at 11:39 am

    THE COURT THANKS Ms Shirley Brandie for the submission of EVIDENCE from her web site at http://WoodBurnerSmoke.net, for foreshadowing other information which would seem to be likewise related to the health dangers of smoke and lastly for presenting as factual evidence information cited from J.Lewtas USEPA, relating to wood-smoke’s (relative to tobacco smoke) longer lasting chemical activity in the body.

    THE COURT recognises Mr Richard Butler in the role of WITNESS, with EVIDENCE relating to a severe asthmatic attack experienced due to environmental conditions experienced in Exeter early in May 2008

  171. Clive Stott

    June 11, 2009 at 4:50 am

    Clive Stott – Witness

    Further, your Honour, I have evidence that Minister O’Byrne knew about the bad effects of smoke from wood burning. http://www.cleanairtas.com/environm.htm
    and yet she still allowed her Department of Parks and Wildlife to conduct smoky planned burns when weather forecasts would have indicated otherwise http://www.cleanairtas.com/photos.htm
    Her action is in direct contrast to the meaning of the Environmental Pollution Control Act 1994.
    The fundamental basis of EMPCA is the prevention, reduction and remediation of environmental harm. This includes particle pollution/environmental smoke.
    I also note your Honour, Minister O’Byrne is the Minister responsible for Air Quality in the state of Tasmania.

  172. Clive Stott

    June 11, 2009 at 4:12 am

    Clive Stott – Witness

    Your Honour I would like to submit similar evidence to #32 Richard Butler.
    I suffered serious respiratory conditions for the same reasons during the same time frame a short distance from Exeter in 2008.
    This is documented at http://www.cleanairtas.com/about.htm and on the following page.

  173. Richard Butler

    June 10, 2009 at 9:54 pm

    I would like to provide a repeated evidence of the severe asthmatic attack experienced due to environmental conditions experienced in Exeter early in May 2008.

  174. Shirley Brandie

    June 10, 2009 at 6:23 pm

    If it please the court, I’d like to add this as evidence:
    Wood smoke is chemically active in the body 40 times longer than tobacco smoke and contains 12 times the amount of carcinogens and is more likely to cause cancer than the same amount of tobacco smoke, according to J. Lewtas-USEPA.

  175. Shirley Brandie

    June 10, 2009 at 6:18 pm

    Your Honour,
    I would like to submit evidence that will prove the health dangers of the smoke. Some of the dangers can be found on my web site: http://WoodBurnerSmoke.net and other significant information will be submitted by test as trial commences. I do believe that I can alter the thinking of those that are in disbelief and look forward to doing so.

  176. Garry Stannus

    June 10, 2009 at 2:22 pm

    Cont…

    2 Various documents submitted by Mr Clive Stott, and contained in http://www.cleanairtas.com/correspo.htmand http://www.cleanairtas.com/photos.htm
    Thank you.
    IN THE NAME OF JUSTICE, I CALL FOR THE SUBMISSION OF MORE EVIDENCE AND FOR THE PEOPLE TO COME FORWARD AND ACCEPT RESPONSIBILITY FOR THE PUBLIC TRIAL OF MINISTER O’BYRNE
    – Garry Stannus
    JUDGE, Court of Public Opinion

  177. Garry Stannus

    June 10, 2009 at 2:21 pm

    THANK YOU MRS ALLAN (COURT OBSERVER, CITIZEN OF THE PUBLIC GALLERY)

    MS BRANDIE (JUROR): The Court recognises you in the additional role of WITNESS.
    It is permissible under RULE 3 for evidence to be presented unsighted during the trial, although it would be helpful to all if you could provide some more detail on the nature of this evidence before the trial commences.

    The evidence discovered to date:
    1 Various photos and online comments contained in the original PUBLIC NOTICE, posted athttp://oldtt.pixelkey.biz/images/uploads/mock_trial.doc
    in the Tasmanian Times on 5th June, 2009.

    Cont…

  178. Shirley Brandie

    June 9, 2009 at 5:33 pm

    Your Honour,
    I do indeed have evidence to prove that smoke is dangerous to both human health and to the environment.
    I would very much like to share this evidence as trial proceeds.
    I would also, should it please the court,seek the additonal role of Witness.

  179. Geraldine Allan

    June 8, 2009 at 9:37 pm

    CITIZEN, PUBLIC GALLERY OF THE COURT

    #25
    I am much obliged, Your Honour.

    #24.
    For the purposes of the Court record, the citizens/observers take this Judicial directions published from a preliminary directions hearing.

  180. Garry Stannus

    June 8, 2009 at 4:05 pm

    I thank Mrs Allan for raising the following issues:
    1 Disrespectful language
    2 Anonymity
    3 Participation open to all

    The Rules of the Court of Public Opinion established thus far:
    1. All Court positions are open to all members of the Public.
    2. Real names, not pseudonyms, are required in this trial in the TT Court of Public Opinion. [exemptions available e.g. for whistleblowers, CONTACT garrystannus@hotmail.com]
    3. DISCOVERY is ongoing:
    4. Participants may adopt more than one role – separate comments for separate roles.
    5. The Court of Public Opinion operates on the principle of mutual respect – language used will be appropriate and respectful.
    6. All remarks, questions and addresses are to be directed to myself and my colleagues on the bench, with the exception of cross examination of witnesses
    [This is a trial in a public courtroom, not a discussion forum or a chat room]

    Therefore, I accept Mrs Allan’s comments with regard to offensive language – and I remind all of the need for courtesy in our communications. [Rule 5] The Court also accepts Mrs Allan’s suggestion that the Court welcomes any evidence possessed by the person ‘Maria’. At present this person is not recognised by the Court under [Rule 2]. Mrs Allan: The Court is more than willing to hear evidence from any person who comes to the Court under their own name and the Court agrees that this unrecognised person is “welcome to submit her evidence” , to act as a defence witness, as well as to participate as a juror and, indeed, to join me on the bench as a judge – once she has supplied her name and nominated for positions.

  181. Garry Stannus

    June 8, 2009 at 4:04 pm

    THE COURT RECOGNISES THE FOLLOWING PARTICIPANTS AND SEEKS FURTHER NOMINATIONS FOR VARIOUS DUTIES IN THE COURT:

    Minister Michelle O’Byrne ACCUSED
    Mr Clive Stott WITNESS
    Mrs Geraldine Allan COURT OBSERVER, CITIZEN OF THE PUBLIC GALLERY
    Ms Shirley Brandie JUROR
    Mr Garry Stannus JUDGE

    THE COURT ALSO RECOGNISES IN THE PUBLIC GALLERY
    Mr Dave Groves, Mr William Boeder, Mr John Alford, Mr Shane Weatherall, Mr David Mohr, Mrs and Mr Claire and Charles Gilmour, Mr Garry Stannus, Mr Richard Butler, Mrs Geraldine Allan, Mr Mike Adams, Mr Clive Stott, Alderman Karl Stevens and Ms Shirley Brandie.

    I thank Ms Brandie for her nomination as JUROR – she is accepted as such. The Court asks Ms Brandie whether she has evidence to present to the court, and whether she also seeks the role of WITNESS.
    I thank Mrs Allan for her nomination as CITIZEN OF THE PUBLIC GALLERY – she is accepted as such.

  182. Geraldine Allan

    June 7, 2009 at 8:45 pm

    Role: CITIZEN OF THE PUBLIC GALLERY
    Your Honour, I wish to address a problem experienced in the gallery from #22 Maria, who seems to be in Contempt of the Rules of this Court.

    In good faith, I believe she is not perhaps understanding the rules and has thus resorted to name-calling of the bona-fide members. Your Honour, I object, to being called a “dim-wit” in Your Court. Any suggestion that I am not willing to let “others have opinions that are differnt (sic) to yours you are worse than those you accuse of corruption.” is not acceptable, and is offensive to me and, I suspect, the other members of this gallery.

    It seems to me Your Honour, that this person has evidence to contradict some of the allegations, and it would be worthwhile that the Court considers her evidence. Could you advise this person that as a defence witness for Minister O’Byrne, she is most welcome to submit her evidence and it will be considered in every fairness and with transparency on this site, by Jury Members. You also might remind this person that she, and any other person who is so inclined, is eligible to participate as a Juror.

    The only prerequisite to any participant is — that persons declare their full name, and do not act under a pseudonym. That rule, Your Honour, is not selective to this People’s Court. Rather, it is common to all court processes.

    Your Honour, could you please invite this person to comply with the Rules of Court which have been established to ensure fairness as far as possible to all particpants who act for both the plaintiff and defendant.

  183. Maria

    June 7, 2009 at 4:42 pm

    What a clicky bunch of dim wits. Thats right if we are not apart of your little self sevring group then we don’t count. I stand by my comment that the burn off in question was in fact a Parks and Wildlife. My point was that if you are going to point the finger at Forestry then make sure it is in fact a forestry fire. The court is not of public opinion, but the sad attempts of a few to make their sad and miserable lives look like they have some importance. Such egotistical behavour is why you will never represent the majoity of good people in this state. By not letting others have opinions that are differnt to yours you are worse than those you accuse of corruption. I do understand that some people really do suffer from terrible health conditions such and that is why a balance mush be reached for us all. All you do by carring on this way is alienate yourselves and the majority of people diregard your position. How does this help anyone?

  184. Shirley Brandie

    June 7, 2009 at 3:22 pm

    I would like to participate as one of the jurors if this is possible.
    I have seen both clean air unhampered by smoke and air that has caused people grief and illness.

    Shirley Brandie

  185. Garry Stannus

    June 6, 2009 at 9:19 pm

    JUDGE IN THE PEOPLE’S COURT – Garry Stannus

    The Court recognises Mrs Allan as a COURT OBSERVER and thanks her for her question.

    “1. Role for the moment: COURT OBSERVER
    Your Honour,
    My friend and I who are in the court observing the preliminaries are having difficulty deciding which role we prefer to undertake. We are assuming that the Rules of Court will apply here and therefore it is not possible to engage in more than one role. Is that correct?”
    Posted by Geraldine Allan on 07/06/09 at 11:22 AM

    The simple answer is ‘No’, Mrs Allan – you are not restricted to one role. In this people’s court, it is permissible to adopt a variety of roles. You can be a COURT OBSERVER and any number of other roles – the Court’s only stipulation is that participants in the Court confine themselves to one role at a time, ie you cannot be both COURT OBSERVER and DEFENCE LAWYER in the same single comment.

    As long as you specify at the start of your comment which role you are appearing in, you will be heard by the Bench. I explained earlier about how one might adopt a variety of roles, and that is, that in any single comment, the person should specify which role it is that they are acting in (as Mr Stott did) and that they would be free to act in other roles in subsequent comments. But for each entry into the Court, you must specify which role it is that you are adopting on that occasion.

    And in case you are thinking of being a judge as well, that would be permissible. This People’s Court will not put a limit on the numbers of persons occupying any position.

    Thank you.
    IN THE NAME OF JUSTICE, I CALL FOR THE PEOPLE TO COME FORTH AND ACCEPT RESPONSIBILITY FOR THE PUBLIC TRIAL OF MINISTER O’BYRNE.

  186. Geraldine Allan

    June 6, 2009 at 3:22 pm

    Role for the moment: COURT OBSERVER

    Your Honour,
    My friend and I who are in the court observing the preliminaries are having difficulty deciding which role we prefer to undertake. We are assuming that the Rules of Court will apply here and therefore it is not possible to engage in more than one role. Is that correct?

  187. Garry Stannus

    June 6, 2009 at 2:51 am

    THANK YOU MR STOTT

    I ORDER THE EVIDENCE BE RECEIVED BY THE COURT AND I FURTHER ORDER THAT THE TRIAL BE SET DOWN FOR COMMENCEMENT AT NOON, FRIDAY THE 12TH OF JUNE.

    I ORDER THAT MICHELLE O’BYRNE PRESENTS HERSELF HERE IN THIS COURT BY THAT DATE, AND THAT THE COURT BE PROVIDED WITH DETAILS AS TO WHO WILL BE REPRESENTING HER, AND DETAILS AS TO WHO WILL BE PROSECUTING THE CASE.

    IN THE MEANTIME I CALL FOR ALL PARTIES TO PREPARE THEMSELVES SO THAT WE DO NOT HAVE TO WASTE THE TIME OF THIS PEOPLE’S COURT. YOU HAVE A WEEK TO IDENTIFY YOURSELVES: THE FOLLOWING INFORMATION IS NEEDED:
    1. Assistant judges

    2. Defence barristers/solicitors

    3. Public Prosecutors

    4. Witnesses

    5. Documented evidence, depositions and the like.

    6. Jurors

    7. Miscellaneous

    I note the following persons in the public gallery: Mr Dave Groves, Mr William Boeder, Mr John Alford, Mr Shane Weatherall, Mr David Mohr, Mrs and Mr Claire and Charles Gilmour, Mr Richard Butler, Mrs Geraldine Allan, Mr Mike Adams, Mr Clive Stott and Alderman Karl Stevens.

    Welcome to this courtroom and may your time here be both enlightening and fruitful. To help achieve a fair trial, and a proper result, I would like you to understand that you can all serve the cause of justice by participating in the trial, not as just members of the public gallery, but by taking on the roles you deem most appropriate.
    I thank Mr Stott for identifying himself to the Court as a WITNESS, and I call on you others to identify yourselves similarly. Is, as Mrs Allan suggested, Mr Weatherall intending to act on behalf of Minister O’Byrne?

    To Dismord, Red Bob and Maria, this Court does not recognise you – if you want to to be heard by the Court, it will be under your real names. However, if there are compelling reasons why you cannot do this, yet still feel the proceedings would be lacking without your input, then, contact the court at garrystannus@hotmail.com , giving your reasons (eg: witness protection programme, whistleblower status etc) and the Court will consider your situation on its individual merits.

    The Court points out that all remarks, questions and addresses are to be directed to myself and my colleagues on the bench, with the exception of cross examination of witnesses. Further to my original point about the public gallery, I shall instruct the Clerk of Court, when that position is filled, to delete from the official record on which the jury will deliberate, all comments that do not adopt the language, customs and terms of this court. For example, I would respectfully point out to Mrs Allan that if she has some question to ask, that she address here remarks to the Bench. And just so that there is no confusion over how this court will proceed, ‘Red Bob’ if you wish to remain in this Court, and indeed take part in proceedings, then you will need to show proper respect.

    This case will be tried according to the law that is contained in the ENVIRONMENTAL MANAGEMENT AND POLLUTION CONTROL ACT 1994 and in other legislation that the Court deems relevant.

    The Court stands adjourned, let everyone get to work and nominate for court-duty.

    Justice of the People,
    Garry Stannus
    Sitting in Judgement,
    Court of Public Opinion,

  188. William Boeder

    June 6, 2009 at 2:03 am

    Clive Stott 6/6. Your research and follow up has shown us all the compelling evidence needed that the pollies and government departments are not prepared to acknowledge by their insane purposes.

    For those dim-wits whom believe that they themselves are emulating nature in their annual burn-offs and other delinquent firings, or claiming that they are saving mankind from disaster by these fires, are dwelling in the land of the fairies and of forestry imbecility.

    The link included in the comments of Clive, is a full testament to the wholly contradicting purposes of Forestry Tasmania, P & W and any other of the irresponsible State government departments whom share the same hallucinations as the collective forestry overlords in this State!

    I laugh out loud at the simpletons and blind followers whom support today’s foolish environmental-damaging-plundering ruthless forestry industry moguls, yet at the same time I share open despair toward the tragic consequences dumped upon the people by this madhouse government.

  189. Clive Stott

    June 5, 2009 at 9:55 pm

    WITNESS:

    I tender further evidence in regards to deliberate fouling of our air in 2009 that affected my health. It was lit by Forestry Tasmania, Parks and Wildlife and Tas Fire Service and it smoked out the Tamar valley on a grand scale. Minister O’Byrne is responsible for PWS and this pollution. The information can be found under 2009 at
    http://www.cleanairtas.com/photos.htm

  190. Clive Stott

    June 5, 2009 at 9:01 pm

    WITNESS:

    In support of my attempts (for over a year) to meet or speak with Minister O’Byrne on the state of our polluted air, I tender the following information which can be found at http://www.cleanairtas.com/correspo.htm
    under the heading Michelle O’Byrne MP – State Minister for Environment

  191. Mike Adams

    June 5, 2009 at 4:43 pm

    And, Maria, all the other episodes were P and W, too. All doing preventive burning to save us all from Black Saturdays.

    Why Michelle O’Byrne can’t find it in her to restore some electoral credibility by saying that her department is subservient to Forestry and forestry (Code for Gunns, FEA etc.)and that nothing she, or it, can say or do will make the slightest difference.

    That way she might just hold off the other Labor candidates for her seat.

  192. Maria

    June 5, 2009 at 5:30 am

    I think you will find if you actually take the time to find out the facts be for you point the finger is that the smoke that did blanket the West Tamar in fact came from a Parks and Wildlife fuel reduction burn in the national park. But that fact will be lost on you because you can’t blame forestry. I have family in Victoria and I have travelled over there to help them sort out thier lives after the fires. Spend some time over there feel their pain and experiences then come back here and shut up and let Parks and Wildlife get on with protecting us all. It is not a myth fuel reduction burns save lives.

  193. Red Bob

    June 5, 2009 at 1:53 am

    A bunch of environmentalist NIMBYs putting a Minister on trial . . . yeah, right, and that isn’t a kangaroo court.

  194. Geraldine Allan

    June 5, 2009 at 12:21 am

    #4 Shane. In light of your comment, it seems you will be a great nomination as a candidate for Michelle O’Byrne’s defence lawyer. I look forward to reading of your acceptance for the position.

    I am serious.

  195. Richard Butler

    June 4, 2009 at 9:32 pm

    Ive just come in having sucked in some very clean air – dramatically, DRAMATICALLY cleaner than any in what is fast becoming a ‘dirty ditch’ The Tamar Valley.

    Yep. Im off my nebuliser, off the Prednisalone and back onto maintenance doses of Seretide. Not a hint of any asthma, and Im evening jogging again.

    Yep the clean air – much cleaner than Tamar regions is the Victorian Burnley Tunnel, The South East Freeway and the smog collecting in Furntree Gully.

    Those ads being run showing Boags Beer being produced from magic water (magic is right – its full of Atrizine) and those glossy ads printed in the Age on Sundays showing clean well retouched shots of vineyards on grassy slopes in retouched and clean air. Someone ought to get onto the ACCC for gross misrepresentation of reality. Clean Tasmania ? Army Intelligence? Bartlett and Leadership ? Effective EPA ?

    Apple schmapple- a disgraceful and disgusting gaggle of oxymorons.

  196. Garry Stannus

    June 4, 2009 at 8:00 pm

    THE TASMANIAN COURT OF PUBLIC OPINION IS NOW IN SESSION.

    MICHELLE ANNE O’BYRNE IS CHARGED WITH FAILING TO DISCHARGE HER OBLIGATIONS AS MINISTER UNDER THE ACT AND WITH OCCASIONING MATERIAL AND/OR SERIOUS ENVIRONMENTAL HARM TO CLIVE STOTT AND RICHARD BUTLER, BOTH OF THE TAMAR VALLEY, BY CONTINUING TO ALLOW/PROMOTE, DESPITE CONTINUED REQUESTS, VARIOUS PLANNED BURNS IN AND AROUND THE TAMAR VALLEY.

    The Court repeats its call for members of the public who will act as witnesses, lawyers (prosecution and defence), friends of the court, judges/assistants, jury member, jury foreman, court officer to identify themselves here; further, you are reminded to identify yourself to the court (through this comments section) and to approach the task seriously.

    This is a serious matter. A Minister of the State of Tasmania is being tried for offences against the environment in a manner unprecedented in the histor;y of this state. This is a court of the people, one of public opinion and the Court will hear and pay attention to proper argument in support of or against the accused.

    Prepare to submit evidence, contact this thread and nominate what functions you can perform:

    THIS IS YOUR CHANCE TO HELP DECIDE IF MICHELLE O’BYRNE, MINISTER FOR ENVIRONMENT, PARKS, HERITAGE AND THE ARTS, IS GUILTY OR NOT GUILTY AS CHARGED.

    Minister O’Byrne you have today, World Environment Day 2009, been supplied with a copy of the indictment, it is your duty now to consider the charges and to make a plea.

    All interested parties are now invited to approach the bench to identify themselves, let’s get this matter under way.

    Garry Stannus
    Court of Public Opinion
    Launceston

  197. Claire and Charles Gilmour

    June 4, 2009 at 7:30 pm

    Oh for goodness sake Shane Weatherall, twice in the last two months, we’ve had the so called forestry regeneration burns, dump hot ash on our house and outside deck. It was still warm, it could have created a fire. I was running around with a hose to make sure nothing caught alight.

    “Do you want to kill people, destroy their property and ruin their lives…”???

    Fair dinkum mate where do you live … in a forestry controlled fire box?

    And I was here first … so stuff Forestry Tasmania and the crap they put on us.

  198. David Mohr

    June 4, 2009 at 5:29 pm

    Ahhh the old tactic of confusing “Regeneration” burns with Fuel Reduction burns. Problem is many people out there don’t know the difference and the “greenies caused the bushfires” myth perpetuates.

  199. Shane Weatherall

    June 4, 2009 at 3:22 pm

    I find it difficult to believe, with Black Saturady so vivid in our memories, that such a ludicrous and foolish prank has been allowed entry onto Tasmanian Times. Do you want to kill people, destroy their property and ruin their lives in a far greater capacity than what the current smoke does? If so, you are in the absolute minority. You do not have the support of the “people” and as such should not make out that you do.

  200. John Alford

    June 4, 2009 at 2:07 pm

    What can I say? The evidence is all there in Gary Stannus’ photos; we in the Tamar Valley have all seen, smelt and occasionally tasted it. Michelle O’Byrne, when standing as a Federal candidate, once tried to convince me of the environmental credentials of the would-be Labor Government. Well, Michelle, you didn’t convince me then and you don’t convince me now; you should hang your head in shame. Your colleagues appear to suffer from an acute lack of shame, which is a symptom of their lack of humanness. Are you one of them? Were you genuine in your conviction about your erstwhile leader’s environmental aims? If so, what has happenend to your convictions in the intervening years , or did you have no convictions in the first place apart from a cynical attempt to garner my vote?

  201. William Boeder

    June 4, 2009 at 1:40 pm

    Further to the comment of Dave Groves 5/6/09.
    Your comment rings true in the minds of all Tasmanians, excepting of course the minds of the Forestry Tasmania Darth Vaders and the Gunns Ltd forces of darkness.
    Both of these forest invaders have no care or concern toward whom suffers through their practices and purposes, just ask them and they will tell you its someone else’s fault this time, probably blame the Greens.

    Be thankful you also don’t have to drink the water from the Duck River region of Tasmania.

    Do remember that the ongoing assaults from these plundering predatory evil forces have full State government sanction to please themselves with whatever harm they wish to cause our environment.

    Be realistic about this Dave, what’s more important here, the Tasmanian people’s health and well being, or the rampant poisoning from smoke, toxic chemicals and the like, all of which appear abundant across our State during certain periods of the years past and present?

    The 2 forces above and this government know better what is the right environment and quality of atmospheres to inflict upon Tasmanians, stop trying to return Tasmania into a healthy green is clean State.
    You could get yourself locked up in jail for voicing your honest concerns.
    Yuo’re probably only another unimportant taxpayer unwarily subsidising this deplorable state of affairs?
    I have it in front of me in print, letters of response right up to the very Monarch of our Torld, The Queen herself, Australia’s Governor General, all of our unworthy Lib/Lab politicians, that there is not one regulatory body that will rein in these 2 opportunistic raiders and plunderers, busily engaged in slaughtering our Ancient Forests for their own enrichments.

    Even the State’s Governor will not intervene!

  202. Dismord

    June 4, 2009 at 1:11 pm

    Welcome to the last bastion of the brainless hoon, Tasmania.
    Not only do most native born Tasmanians think worrying about smoke is a sissy mainland trait they respect and admire thuggish politicians. This will not change until a high % of voters here are ex-mainlanders.
    Welcome again to the land of the counter- suggestible and recalcitrant red-neck drongo.

  203. Dave Groves

    June 4, 2009 at 10:45 am

    Garry I left Sydney in the hope of finding clean air in pristine Tasmania.

    The air in Sydney is woeful, but they have an Environmental Protection Agency that will crucify anyone that sets fire to a pile of leaves in their backyard.
    Cars and trucks are the big killers there, not fires.

    Come to Tasmania and we have no EPA.

    Our government fully sanctions massive burning of green waste from the highly wasteful forestry operations carried out in this state.

    If I lit a fire in Sydney like the autumn ritual inflicted on our people here, I would be locked up and have the key thrown away.

    The poor air quality in Tasmania makes exercise impossible unless you have a death wish.

    What are these people who consistently and constantly assault our health thinking?

    Perhaps all their time is spent indoors and they don’t give a flying f*** about their children or grandchildren or their fellow beings?

    I have no other answer.

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