In response to Minister Llewellyn’s defence of the reduction of opportunities for public participation in the Tasmanian planning process (Mercury 17th July), I would like to draw his attention to the International Best Practice Principles for Public Participation established by the International Association of Impact Assessment. Public participation, as well as Impact Assessment generally, is expanding in use everywhere else around the world. Best practice highlights the importance of public participation in the process of Impact Assessments.
It is well recognised internationally that when the public’s knowledge and view is engaged and integrated into the planning and development process from the beginning, protests and confrontation at a later stage are minimised. Local knowledge being included in the Integrated Impact Assessment provides significant benefits to the outcome of the process.
For the sake of Tasmanian democratic processes and the future of this island, Labor government needs to review and adhere to the International Best Practice Principles for Public Participation in Integrated Impact Assessment, and increase opportunities for public participation.
Convenor – Tasmanians for a Healthy Democracy