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


I agree with Erich Abetz

I think for once I agree with that Green and now Gunns hater Erich Abetz, the dear but simple Hodgman and the pro-forestry workers campaigner Dimity Hirst.

Tear up the Agreement and let the Tasmanian Upper House vote it down.

This will clean up the industry as they exit stage right and prevent the players remaining on the drip until the next Government taxpayer funded bailout.

All the current operators in this charade reflect a state of play brought about by debt, caused through greed, poor buiness decisions and bad management.

As a result they are either now in administration, the hands of the bank or bankrupt – FEA, Great Southern, Timbercorp, Gunns, Forestry Tasmania and the contractors.

This despite the fact that the State Forests over which they are fighting belong to us the people and cost the principal player Forestry Tasmania, at the start of this one time gravy train, absolutely nothing.

Tearing the IGA up means that the taxpayer gets to keep the money, $275 million and the industry for a change will have to fend like ordinary mortals for itself.

This should be the end of the matter.

First published as comment on this article, HERE

• Richard Colbeck: Governments cannot ignore Tasmanian community

Senator for Tasmania
Shadow Parliamentary Secretary for Fisheries and Forestry
Shadow Parliamentary Secretary for Innovation, Industry and Science
21 August 2011

Governments cannot ignore Tasmanian community

The Prime Minister and the Premier must start listening to the Tasmanian community and ditch the failed forestry Intergovernmental Agreement, Coalition Forestry Spokesman Senator Richard Colbeck said.

Senator Colbeck heard this message loud and clear today listening to 1000 people rally at Smithton in protest against the industry-destroying deal.

“The governments cannot ignore 1000 voices at Smithton today and 2000 voices in Hobart on Saturday. The Prime Minister and the Premier must start listening.

“At both rallies community representatives told of pain and anguish felt by individuals and businesses that has been caused by the uncertainty of this deal.

“Tasmania’s forest industry supporters are tired of broken promises. They are tired of the majority being dictated to by a minority.

“They want government to govern for all Tasmanians, not just 10-15 per cent.

“They want their elected representatives to put the jobs of the community before their own – the people of Tasmania must come first.

“Local communities like Smithton don’t want to be locked out of their own back yards.

“But the Greens and the environmental activists don’t want to let anyone in.

“They want to lock out forestry. They want to lock out mining. They want to lock out recreation. They even want to lock out tourism.

“Today the people of Circular Head said enough is enough.

“It is time for Labor to stand up to their Greens cronies and put the interest of the wider Tasmanian community first.

“The views of communities like Circular Head, and the support across Tasmania for our forest industries, should not and must not be ignored by the governments.

“It is time to ditch this sham deal,” Senator Colbeck said.

First published: 2011-08-21 06:28 PM

Author Credits: [show_post_categories parent="no" parentcategory="writers" show = "category" hyperlink="yes"]


  1. john hayward

    August 23, 2011 at 9:47 pm

    Given his distinguished economic CV, it’s time we install Colbeck as receiver for the Tas economy.

    We lack only Richard’s faith that the cargo cult of native forest subsidies is inexhaustible.

    John Hayward

  2. David Obendorf

    August 22, 2011 at 5:38 pm

    Something happened big time in the two weeks between the signing of the Heads of Agreement and the signing of the Intergovernmental Agreement.

    The Kelty rework of the SoFP signatory documents needed some serious political intervention by the Australian Greens et al. Notably the ENGO signatory groups kept rather stumm during this period of play. Were they a ‘flies in the oinment’ or ‘gease on the wheels’?

    All I know is that this was a crap process of secretative, unrepresentative negotiation without a professionally trained facilitator involved. [Please don’t suggest Bill Kelty was that!]

    After months and months of secret talks in the negotiators tents we got the October 2010 ‘peace deal’ with the ‘a pulp mill’ clause and the feeble statement on a transition to plantations and then the priniciple calling for a moratorium on forest logging fell off the agenda and still the ENGOs appeased – finally the environmental troops started to leave the envirocracies.

    A classic case of playing the opposition at their own game using with the same strategies and trying to win! A despicable performance!

  3. Karl Stevens

    August 21, 2011 at 1:39 pm

    I have made a significant breakthrough in understanding the current forestry situation in Tasmania. The environment movement has been infiltrated not by Gunns but by the Federal Government. Groups chaining themselves to beds in Harvey Norman are simply implementing Federal Government policy. How could Canberra ignore the CSIRO research that Tasmania has the worlds best carbon storing forests? They couldn’t, and the fact Labor still run the Liberal tax breaks for MIS meant they had to get the ENGO’s on side to promote tree plantations. Of course all the ENGO’s now support government policy on forestry which is to lock-up carbon in HCVF and switch to monoculture. The only opponents left are people opposing Gunns pulp mill and the rest of the industry itself. Gunns is now interchangeable with the ENGO’s. Remove the GFC from the equation and all the pieces fall into place. Also Gunns were not lying when they said they were mislead by the government. They were promised much, much more and surprisingly they were not represented in the ‘peace agreement’ by the industry but by the ‘environmentalists’.

  4. phill Parsons

    August 21, 2011 at 11:58 am

    Old ideas continue to hold back the Tasmanian economy. Sure, the timber industry can crash the IGA. What then, will econmically viable markets appear in a world where the global economy is in stall mode.

    The State government does not have to sell wood from the forests, a very lucrative income can come from sinking Carbon without the huge costs the Halton infers in a care and maintenance mode.

    Brinkmanship can see new brinks open up and swallow players whole.

    Where do they think the Harvey Norman protests came from when the commitment to immediatley conserve 572,000 ha of forest, as agreed with industry, was not fulfilled.

  5. Russell

    August 21, 2011 at 11:49 am

    Re #5
    There wouldn’t be any need for the “fire fighting work trained” if FT didn’t light all the fires we have in Tasmania each year. It’s not for fuel reduction, it’s just what’s left of our forests.

    Re #6
    And even the 3 weren’t environment groups.

  6. Pete Godfrey

    August 21, 2011 at 10:58 am

    It appears that the Green haters have very short memories.
    The group who came to the SOP agreement were a majority of Timber Industry representatives.
    There were only 3 environment groups at the table and 7 industry groups.
    The industry groups had the vast majority of history in negotiating skills but somehow their part seems to have been conveniently forgotten.

  7. Robin Halton

    August 21, 2011 at 3:46 am

    Tear up the Agreement by all means as it was never going to work anyway, all the Greens ever wanted was shut down native forests from industry use and prevent the public the freedom of enjoying the forests.
    The current RFA 1997-2017 covers all aspects of Wood Production and Conservation measures by way of the Forest Practices Code. If forestry does go into decline in the following years, so what, the taxpayer will have to prop it up until the value of our native grown timber increases while the rest of South East cuts their forests till there is nothing left to market overseas. It is the responsibility of FT as Land Manager to continue administer sales of forest produce, within a care and maintenance mode FT would be obliged to protect the forest estate against wildfire, maintain the existing road network and regularly update the State Forest inventory.
    FT must retain the ability to have a fire fighting work trained and available during the spring- summer- autumn period. There would be no reason to not to utilise displaced or surplus forest contractors for these tasks.
    The Argeement was never going to work as there is now insufficient evidence as to why FT should give up any State Forest as the whole affair was staged on the term HCV’s which is debatable but does not weigh sufficiently as a reason to hand over 520,000ha of State Forest for further verification by “so called independent experts” whose ambition is to set up another Green empire to bleed the Federal Government for ever and a day to assume a caretaker role over State Forest.

  8. William Boeder

    August 21, 2011 at 2:22 am

    Senator Colbeck is merely making croaking noises he made many years ago, perhaps he should return back to those recent past times when he was one of the many State ministers who joined hands with each and all those others to become so hopelessly addicted to forestry subjugating genuflection and manipulation?

    Yes, one could say that they were the halcyon times of this Liberal Senator, whilst resting under the spell of Senator Erich Abetz, another who has equally proven to be of so little good or benefit to the people of Tasmania.

  9. john hawkins

    August 21, 2011 at 12:56 am

    Colbeck would appear to be continuing the Grand Tradition of Tasmanian Liberal Forestry Senators namely acting in the manner of the Brain Dead.

  10. Karl Stevens

    August 21, 2011 at 12:06 am

    They Coalition have tried to craft an agreement that reflects back whatever you want to see in it. Forests will be saved, jobs will still be available, kosher-acceptable bedheads will be on sale at Harvey Norman, sourced from degraded woodlots well away from the sanctity of the Blue Tier or Upper Florentine. Some of us have spent too long in the real world and realise its a con job. All we needed to do was get rid of commodity wood chips and our future was assured. Unfortunately the Soviet-style Greens wanted to keep every little commissar in vodka and meal tickets. The ‘peace agreement’ is a sham. I don’t think it matters how it disintegrates.

  11. Daniel Ferguson

    August 20, 2011 at 11:58 pm

    As much as I would prefer to think that tearing up the deal would be the end of the matter, I think you will find John that the timber industry is quite agreeable with the bit of the deal with regard to taking the next big drip feed of money. Oh yes, that isn’t the problem, its that other bit. Once again, it is them not wanting to forgo any access to our HCV forests that is the sticking point.
    Some media players and timber industry heavyweights(using logic only they can understand), have now neatly pointed the indignant finger at those dastardly demons (the Greens) as the enemy, and the saviour and crusader for the working man (no, not johnnie howard this time but very close) Tony Abbott federally or closer to home, Will Hodgman and his liberals. Deja vu anyone?
    At the moment it would appear that anyone who wants to get on a soapbox and call for an election because the Greens are responsible for everything that can go wrong, might go wrong, has gone wrong or should go wrong is being allowed to, and who cares if a little misinformation finds its way into a good bit of incitement.

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