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


Wood smoke: Suck it up …

*Pic: Now two days later – 7th April. A photo from Grindelwald. Launceston is down there somewhere in the stinking smoke.

First published April 8

Every year without fail we are smoked out across Tasmania by deliberate burning.

It doesn’t matter if these particulates go deep into our lungs and stop there.

It doesn’t matter if the smoke is made up of many of the same particulates found in cigarette smoke.

It doesn’t matter if the smoke makes us sick or keeps us locked up inside.

State Government tries to sell it to us through the media: “Autumn is fuel reduction season. Fight fire with fire” So, they are creating all this harmful smoke for us?

Autumn is hell for the young, the elderly and those with lung or cardiac disease and their families. Little mention is made re their smoke-induced sickness lasting until lives are shortened.

It doesn’t matter if the specialized cancer agency (IRAC) of the World Health Organization (WHO) says outdoor air pollution is the leading environmental cause of cancer deaths.

It doesn’t matter if the WHO classified outdoor air pollution as carcinogenic to humans (Group 1). And after thoroughly reviewing the latest available scientific literature, world leading experts convened by the IRAC Monographs Programme concluded that: there is sufficient evidence that exposure to outdoor air pollution causes lung cancer (Group 1).

It doesn’t matter if the WHO also noted a positive association with an increased risk of bladder cancer.

It doesn’t matter that particulate matter, a major component of outdoor air pollution, was evaluated separately and was also classified as carcinogenic to humans (Group 1 is the highest category) along with: Formaldehyde, Trichloroethylene, Azathioprine, Sulphur Mustard, Asbestos, Plutonium, Thorium-232 , Arsenic, Beryllium, Cadmium, Radon-222, Radium-224,226 and 228, Silica dust, Cyclosporine, X- and Gamma-Radiation, Tobacco smoke, and so on.

On the 5th April 2017 smoke started to build. This is when burning should have stopped.

Looking towards Exeter from Brady’s Lookout.

What goes up must come down.

Exeter is down there somewhere in the stinking smoke.

The Tamar Valley as far as the eye can see … smoke!

It doesn’t matter if this smoke originated in Tasmania, Victoria or both.

Wind direction from the North. Image courtesy of https://earth.nullschool.net

Smoke from Victoria? Satellite image courtesy of NASA. https://lance-modis.eosdis.nasa.go http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-04-07/smoky-melbourne-planned-burns-in-victoria-causing-city-haze/8424292

And while this was going on Tasmanian burns kept smoking!!

Real-time ambient air quality data. Courtesy of Tas EPA Air division. http://epa.tas.gov.au/epa/air/monitoring-air-pollution/real-time-air-quality-data-for-tasmania

This is what we are forced to breathe!

*Clive Stott worked for the Tasmanian Health Department for almost 15 years in charge of buildings, engineering and biomedical engineering at a district hospital. He also provided home oxygen therapy equipment support to respiratory patients for CIG/BOC Gases. It troubles Clive the Asthma Foundation of Tasmania will not lobby on behalf of its members to stop unnecessary planned burn smoke. Clive also owns the website www.cleanairtas.com

Dr Scott McKeown, Specialist Medical Advisor Public Health Service: Elevated levels of smoke in the North

• Lola Moth in Comments: On Tuesday my friends arrived on the ferry with their motorcycle loaded up for a two week holiday in clean, green Tasmania. By Thursday afternoon they had retreated to the coast because they had trouble breathing at my place near Deloraine. Today one of them is flying home to Sydney to get away from the pure air she was promised on the ads. Her partner can’t get back on the ferry for another week. He has had surgery for throat cancer and the hole in his throat he breathes through is running out of filters and the machine he needs to unclog his airways is working overtime. If I can keep him out of hospital he should be able to ride home otherwise he will have to fly home and send the bike by freight. Their well planned holiday has turned into a nightmare.

Emma Anglesey: Impacts of more “regeneration burns” is unacceptable If the Tasmanian Legislative Council supports the Liberal Government’s plan to open up 356,000ha of reserved forest for clear-felling and burning this week, then we will have to put up with even more “regeneration burns” and cop the unacceptable impacts they have on the climate, our environment, people’s health and our industries for many years to come …



  1. Pete Godfrey

    April 7, 2017 at 11:53 am

    Well put together Clive, it does seem that lying to us is the main game.

    Fuel reduction burns account for some of the smoke but deliberate land clearing burns, burning off waste that could safely be left to rot down and burning of logging waste is more than likely the main contributor.

    The argument that these burns protect communities from out of control wildfires does not hold water.

    Tasmania has been burning like this for decades yet we still had massive fires in recent years that threatened the Great Western Tiers and surrounds, the North West and also Dunalley.

    Burning is not the answer, rapid action when fires are noticed along with maintained fire breaks is.

  2. lola moth

    April 7, 2017 at 12:03 pm

    On Tuesday my friends arrived on the ferry with their motorcycle loaded up for a two week holiday in clean, green Tasmania. By Thursday afternoon they had retreated to the coast because they had trouble breathing at my place near Deloraine. Today one of them is flying home to Sydney to get away from the pure air she was promised on the ads. Her partner can’t get back on the ferry for another week. He has had surgery for throat cancer and the hole in his throat he breathes through is running out of filters and the machine he needs to unclog his airways is working overtime. If I can keep him out of hospital he should be able to ride home otherwise he will have to fly home and send the bike by freight. Their well planned holiday has turned into a nightmare.

  3. Robin Charles Halton

    April 7, 2017 at 1:22 pm

    Burn and burn well my hearties, autumn is action time to reduce the fuel loads in order to reduce the effects of future wildfires.

    According to the media some smoke was drifting across from Victorian fuel reduction activities for those who care to take notice!

    Those suffering from health ailments should by now be aware of the seasonal conditions and take the necessary action to stay indoors or seek further medical advice!

    Fuel reduction is a part of the Tasmanian way of life as it has been for thousands of years, well before the arrival of the grizzlers.

    Funny that one never hears of complaints when it is wildfires threaten life, stock and property, it seems it is only a select few that make a coughing noise when fire become a land management tool for controlled burning.

  4. Clive Stott

    April 7, 2017 at 3:10 pm

    I am disappointed Dr Scott McKeown, Specialist Medical Advisor Public Health Service with your article but this is what I would expect from a government not going by what it claim to stand for: “Public Health Services works to improve and protect the health and wellbeing of all Tasmanians.”

    We have been over and over this misinformation Public Health has been peddling for years.

    Let’s address “Staying indoors with windows and doors closed where possible.” While the burners smoke out Tasmania.

    This advice is wrong and could very well be dangerous advice you are giving out.

    Under FOI release, Dr Fay Johnston wrote the following to Dr Roscoe Taylor on 10/12/2013:
    “Protection indoors is hard to generaIise as it varies with the type of house –
    for episodes of just a few hours it could be very helpful.
    For fine particles indoor air will eventually equilibrate with outdoor air.”

    Dr McKeown you should know wood smoke is made up of these fine particles with a PM2.5 signature; this is why it is so dangerous to our health.

    You would know indoor air is 5 times worse on a good day than outdoor air.

    You would know that it is impossible to smoke-proof a house otherwise you would die of the lack of air.

    You would know outdoor air is drawn into a house through negative pressure.

    You would know that this smoke event lasted more than a few hours.
    And you would know people can be made ill with it in much less time than that.

    You would know these things wouldn’t you?

    Roscoe Taylor sent Dr Martin Bechevskis (sp.) to ‘discuss’ these same ‘helpful hints’ with me that you are now going on about back in 2008/9 I think it was. A long time ago anyway.

    He left DHHS Public Health soon afterwards. After he found out what was being said by DHHS was not correct.

    Dr McKeown has it ever entered your head to stop the smoke at the source?

  5. John hawkins

    April 7, 2017 at 3:40 pm

    In the awful rag that is the examiner pollution from smoke is put down to wind from fires in Victoria.

    This sort of rubbish is not borne out by the pollution indicator shown in the map above as there is no consistency.

    We have been down this track before in 2010 when a enormous burn on the Western Tiers smoked out Launceston just before the election this was also put done by the EPA to fires in Victoria.

    The Liberal party feed this rubbish to the paper who print it.

  6. Frank again

    April 7, 2017 at 7:26 pm

    And the media spin unit was running on full throttle. As Leon is on the mainland for a couple of weeks, the replacement just played her role smooth as always. The expert coordinators of the Tasmanian Fire Service, the Tourism Council Executive, the whole show went as expected.
    This on one the worse days we had in regarding to air pollution this year, the spin doctoring reporting of the latest resigning of the “Let’s Be Nice To Each Others Businesses” agreement between industries.
    The grease was running well.

    Q: When will Australia’s managers and people in leadership learn to pick up the biomass and turn the unloved, discarded biomass it into true values that will stand the test of time?

    Yes, we now live in a sickening situation in the truest sense Clive.

  7. Jack Lumber

    April 7, 2017 at 7:51 pm

    Re 1 reports from TFS are that all burning activities by govt agencies had ceased and that the smoke was from Victoria

    Where does this factor in this discussion ?

    As a result of numerous fire events and independent reviews in Victoria there is a large inter agency fuel reduction
    programme .

    Fire break maintenance and rapid first respond are part of fire management , but prevention by fuel levels management is seen he preferred option . There are fuel reduction burns in Victoria that are very close to urban areas . Why ? Hazard and risk management

    Just like the end of day light saving and the first fog at Launceston airport and the inevitable outrage from many on TT who on suspects also burn firewood for heat in the coming months , the blame game is a regular event

    Maybe one day there will be a more balanced attempt
    to discuss what is a complex and important topic

  8. Jack Lumber

    April 7, 2017 at 9:14 pm

    Following on

    Have a look and see if fire breaks and quick response are the answer to the exclusion of fuel reduction burns

    Public health and community health is also important but the tone of the article suggests it is not considered as part of
    Policy and Practice . It is.

  9. Carol Rea

    April 7, 2017 at 11:02 pm

    If you want to see what is happening now go to http://www.fire.tas.gov.au/Show?pageId=colWhatsBurningNow
    Looking at the Derby air quality information this morning I noticed that in the 24 hours previous there was a 121 hectare burn at Pioneer South for Future Potential Production Forest.
    Pioneer South (FPPF)
    Pioneer South (FPPF)
    Name Pioneer South (FPPF)
    Area (ha) 121.4
    Specific Objective Asset Protection
    Contact Number 0429 353 178
    Status Complete
    Last Updated 2017-04-08 09:17:23
    And another one that was a regeneration burn MO111C
    Name MO111C
    Area (ha) 39.9
    Specific Objective Regeneration Burning
    Contact Number (03) 6235 8249
    Status Complete
    Last Updated 2017-04-08 09:17:23
    They would have contributed to smoke as well.

  10. TGC

    April 8, 2017 at 12:04 am

    #2 “Their well planned holiday”
    Whilst very sympathetic of their (obviously long standing) illnesses one could question that the holiday was “well planned”
    It is well known that in autumnal Tasmania fuel reduction burns are the regular event.Persons who have respiratory difficulties-unrelated to ‘smoke’-
    should anticipate in their ‘planning’ of a Tasmanian holiday at this time of the year ‘smoke’ could be an issue.
    At least there was “the coast to retreat to”.

  11. max

    April 8, 2017 at 1:15 am

    3 # Burn and burn well my hearties, autumn is action time to reduce the fuel loads in order to reduce the effects of future wildfires.

    Once again you repeat the mantra that you must have been indoctrinated with. Only a brainwashed person could cheer on a practice that has been proven to seriously effect the health and wellbeing of the general population. There is no safe level of 2.5 particulate but you repeat the stupidity of telling us to take the necessary action to stay indoors or seek further medical advice!

    Fuel reduction is a part of the Tasmanian way of life as it has been for thousands of years. No it isn’t. The Tasmanian Aborigines practiced fire stick farming, that is nothing like the present practice and they had the advantage of starting a fire and staying up wind of the smoke.

    The present smoke problem is a new abomination that has come into existence because of a change in forestry in 1960. Clear felling and the cheap and nasty clean up is the main cause of the present unacceptable and deplorable smoke problem that you think we should accept and stop grizzling about.

    I survived the 1967 fires and no amount of so called hazard reduction would have made any difference. I know it is the present thought bubble to stop wild fires, but I was there in Cygnet prior to and after the 1960 fires and unless the area was burnt as bad as the actual fire, then nothing would would have made a difference. Most wild fires start as grass fires and unless we stop growing the stuff then there is always going to be escape fires.

  12. philll Parsons

    April 8, 2017 at 1:54 am

    Passed Barnett as he prattled on to voters outside his office in Deloraine. Shook my head in response to a wan smile from Barnett. He must have mistaken my hat.

    I was on my way home so I left town and headed west into the smoke and a landscape of dead and dying trees reminding me of overexploited land I have seen elsewhere.

    They clearly cannot see the consequences of their domination theories from behind that blue blindfold they all wear.

  13. abs

    April 8, 2017 at 2:39 am

    #8 considered from the fatal second priority position, eh Lumber?

    those dollars (maaate..) aint gunna by burn themselves, are they?

  14. Claire Gilmour

    April 8, 2017 at 3:24 am

    #3 Robin, If that were true to word there would be no-one adjacent to Forestry that has been burnt out.

    The true fact of the matter is Forestry Tasmania burns mega amounts of timber in their coupes, they don’t do it to protect people, they do it because someone higher up is treating them and the public as idiots so the wood can continue to be … cut and cut and cut.

    They do NOT to do safety burns, indeed they don’t allow fuel reduction burns close to/next to their coupes.

    Forestry Tasmania change the wet landscape to a dry landscape. They suck creeks dry with their new so called forests, and their plantations are so fire prone they cause mega fires!

    Not once in 20 years have the government, Forestry Tasmania or even TFS ever done a so-called fuel reduction burn in my area. The only thing that’s destroyed my wet property and beautifully dark red blackwood trees is FT!

    I know … cos Forestry Tasmania’s so called ‘worlds best practice, burnt 90% of my property down!

    But sorry … you were saying Robin?

  15. Clive Stott

    April 8, 2017 at 7:03 am

    Examiner Saturday April 8 Page 2 there is an article on the smoke.

    The Manager of the Tasmanian Fire Service Fuel Reduction Unit, Sandra Whight, said a small 15Ha burn near Devonport was conducted on Friday 7th however smoke did not spread from the blaze.”

    This is great news and comforting to know that our fuel reduction unit can now do smokeless burns.

    This surely must be a world first!

    The article also said, “Launceston and parts of the North East were covered by a blanket of smoke on Friday…”

    Wrong. Have a look at the EPA’s Indicative real-time Tasmanian Air Quality Data in the main article above and even the dumbest of people can see the highly elevated readings in red (because of smoke) stretched from Wynyard to Triabunna. Certainly much more than just Lonny and the N/E!

    Sandra Whight also admits to one 15Ha burn being lit on the 7th.

    Now that wouldn’t have been the 21Ha Devonfield fuel reduction burn lit on the 7th near Miandetta?

    Surely Ms Whight as Manager of the unit should know. Was she downplaying the size, or maybe she really doesn’t know what is going on?

    Further, Ms Whight conveniently forgot to mention all her other burns taking place and creating smoke in northern Tasmania on Friday the 7th. See below…
    It wasn’t all smoke from the mainland, was it?

    Sisters Hills (section 1) – 53.5Ha Asset Protection.
    Stubbs Road North – 42.1Ha Fuel Reduction
    Grasstree Road – 29.8Ha Fuel Reduction
    Sheppards Road – 60Ha Fuel Reduction
    Ginn Road – 19.1Ha Fuel Reduction
    Beaumauris 11AP – 71Ha Fuel Reduction
    Beaumauris 13AP – 27.6Ha Fuel Reduction
    Beaumauris 14AP – 43.4Ha Fuel Reduction
    Beaumauris 15AP – 64Ha Fuel Reduction
    Beaumauris 16AP – 18.7Ha Fuel Reduction

    Not good enough Sandra Whight in my opinion.

  16. Mark Temby

    April 8, 2017 at 10:56 am

    Gee, I wonder where so much fake news generates! Could it be from politics? “Fuel reduction” is a handle for the media, the gullible, the team flag wavers and the pig ignorant. Sorry, do proceed…

  17. Mark Temby

    April 8, 2017 at 11:34 am

    For those seeking further concrete examples of a “handle” there is an excellent article by Lenore Taylor in the Guardian. My apologies to any of those team flag wavers who have unwittingly used the “carbon tax” in their past arguments.


    Lenore states in part, “Take Tony Abbott’s former chief of staff, Peta Credlin, happily conceding on Sky news that she and Abbott always knew a floating carbon price wasn’t really a ‘tax’ and gloating about how their success at making this falsehood ‘stick’ meant Julia Gillard was “gone”.

  18. Pete Godfrey

    April 8, 2017 at 11:46 am

    #7 and 8.
    Jack, thanks for the links. After all these years and all the massive fires such as the 1983 Ash Wednesday fires, the 1967 Hobart fires, the innumerable number of fires on the big island and the Black Saturday fires. The powers that be finally decide that they need to target their fuel reduction burns.
    It seems that they move at a glacial pace.
    Fire breaks are not just there to stop fires they are there as points where back burns can be lit. If you wait until the fire is definitely coming to that point and until conditions are right. Eg, wind, night time, etc, then light up a back burn then there is a lot less mopping up and much less chance that the back burn will turn into a hazard.
    The trouble with fire management and planning is that politicians want to meddle, to put their faces in the news and claim it was all their work to save the towns.
    Our own Tasmanian 28,000 ha a year target for fuel reduction burns has very little in the way of planning and adding in forest waste burnoffs doesn’t help.
    I too remember the last time that Victoria was blamed for our smoke, I actually photographed a fire that was causing the smoke in Launceston that day. I went out and found where it was. Strangely enough it was not in Victoria at all but it was a Gunns ltd burnoff in the Dublin Plains area. It too got away and burnt outside the planned area, plus torched a beautiful stand of celery top pine.
    Our government could also take a stand and ask the Victorian government not to undertake massive burns when there is a Northerly airflow predicted.
    That is if we the people are in fact of any value to them.

  19. lola moth

    April 8, 2017 at 11:47 am

    #10 TGC The smoke we had in the Deloraine district over the past few days was worse than we had during the bushfires on the Great Western Tiers. We could not see the end of our driveway sometimes and did not see the tiers for three days. I was expecting embers to fall and evacuation orders to be sent. My friends had researched the expected smoke levels for their holiday but they were not prepared for what they actually got. They kept riding until they were clear of the worst of it and ended up in Hobart. The type of cancer my friend had was directly related to welding galvanised steel so he understands the risks of tainted smoke.
    If the recent smoke levels were expected by the people who lit it and that amount of poisoning of the populace was planned then the whole lot of them should be sacked.

  20. Barney Rubble

    April 8, 2017 at 12:02 pm

    Let’s not forget this year was the 50th anniversary of the 67 bush fires. I lived through that hellish day (all be it as a child) and hope nobody has to do the same again. I am happy to suffer some smoke and poor air quality if it reduces the impacts of bushfires.

    Some people just run out of things to complain about, toughen up you lot of princesses.

  21. Ted Mead

    April 8, 2017 at 12:24 pm

    #3 Robin continues to show us that he knows as much about fire and fire history as he does about forest ecology.

    Interesting that someone who started off at FT … ended up hooking-up with all the pyros there, and ultimately now claims has deep knowledge about forest management.

    No wonder the industry and the TFS is a classic basket case!

    $ Millions wasted on this insidious ideology by people who understand nothing about land management!


  22. max

    April 8, 2017 at 12:48 pm

    # 10 TGC. Once again your razor sharp mind has hit the nail on the head, Autumn is the burning season Every Tasmanian knows that and we are told that we should take the appropriate precautions, possibly leave the state if we can. All of Tasmania should shut down, except of cause for the pyromaniacs. Its about time the government got behind our tourist industry and advised the closure of Tasmania for the burn season.

  23. Robin Charles Halton

    April 8, 2017 at 3:02 pm

    #14 Claire, I reckon you scared them away for good and I am not joking!

    Your issue with FT, presumably FT Smithton is something that you should have dealt with earlier!
    Did you bother to contact the FT Chief or their Legal Officer at the time, or in fact engage a lawyer on your behalf if your claim was not resolved in a fair and reasonable manner!

    Sounds as if you have left yourself with a lifetime problem as you regularly mention it on TT!
    FT are not above the law!

  24. Russell

    April 8, 2017 at 3:28 pm

    Re #3 and #20
    … burning (is) one of the main causes of Climate Change at a time when it is vital that we DON’T pollute our atmosphere any longer.

    Your moronic non-profit buddies are also THE main reason we now have wildfires. Growing same age same height highly volatile oil-rich monoculture trees one metre apart is sheer madness and deliberately irresponsible.

    How come FT only burn on weekends, when the EPA have all gone home?

    The EPA are just as culpible for the damages cause.


  25. Russell

    April 8, 2017 at 3:41 pm

    Re #11
    Tasmanian (and mainland Australian) Indigenous people burned so well that the whole State and Country was “a gentleman’s park” as described by many many early surveyors and explorers. Read “The Biggest Estate On Earth” by Bill Gammage.

    Indigenous Australians understood their country so intimately that they knew exactly how many years was required between burning each species of tree or bush within a “template.”

    Within 50 years of invasion the europeans had stuffed almost every part of the Continent by stopping Indigenous peoples’ burning practices and replaced the native vegetation with choking exotic weeds (eg: blackberries) and allowed things like horizontal scrub to proliferate.

    Almost 200 years later the non-Indigenous invaders STILL continue their mindless practices.

    The only places on the Continent which remain healthy, safe and relatively intact are those still owned and managed by Indigenous people.

  26. William Boeder

    April 8, 2017 at 7:48 pm

    #23. Robin Charles Halton, your implied statement regarding the losses suffered by Claire are of her own making, then that Forestry Tasmania are exempted from their own negligence, does not have any standing whatsoever.
    I will try to demonstrate to you further below in this comment of the snowflake in hell chance of Claire’s success in an action she could initiate against Forestry Tasmania.
    The real problem of the smoke dangers upon the people of Tasmania then of its causations are not entirely to be ignored.
    The real problem is not the sole belief that this matter rests with GBE of Forestry Tasmania, this being that so many of their statute breaches are either ignored, heavily down-played, lied about, then who is that specific person that ensures the F/T resultant statute breaches (or worse) are correctly followed up by due legal process when the fact is that the non responsible authorities in this State of Tasmania don’t give a damn.
    So there will not exist such a person.
    Further truth about this matter is that each of the F/T breaches are a product of the Tasmania government themselves as they are the (notated) “responsible authority” that appoints the 2 stakeholder ministers that become the stakeholders that F/T are inevitably beholden thereto.
    The State’s treasurer and the often lesser regarded dull-witted and incompetent forests minister are the usual 2 appointed stakeholder ministers, so, were either of these 2 stakeholders to allow an action or try to defend an against any F/T breach or reported incident, they would actually be risking an action being apportioned to themselves which may then enable a decision being handed down against themselves and this State’s government.
    (That is if the proper and correct process of law is allowed its influence to act against the State in a case matter of this type, albeit an action against the Crown of Tasmania.)

    “Can any single Tasmanian person” appreciate or understand that in their taking an action or commencing a litigation against Forestry Tasmania, “that Tasmanian person” is in all actuality and effect, taking on the Full Monty of the State government, its Justice department, its Judiciary, and not to forget the trembling structure of the Tasmanian State law.
    Only when one has researched into the confusion and the full incongruity of the entire structure of the State government GBE of Forestry Tasmania, then each of the other GBE’s, tis only then one will discover that the whole lot of ‘em are beholden unto the government of the day, so look out any person that dares to take an action against any one of Tasmania’s GBE’s.

    This kind of structured and installed contradiction upon itself may have been gotten away with in the dark ages, but surely not in the Tasmania of today.
    Tis only then when one comes to the realization of just how cocked-up is this whole of State GBE corporate contradiction that is in all its reality, is nought but the crock-pot of shizer that I now describe it to be.
    The State of Tasmania itself not being able to escape or sever its attachment or connection away from its statute breaching GBE’s, nor is there the real likelihood that this State of Tasmania would penalize itself under the auspices of the State government agency or business enterprise they represent. (Being each of their GBE’s.)
    One can only wonder how the high-level legal functionaries in our State can be rest assured that all is fine and dandy and tight as a drum in Tasmania?

  27. Alison Bleaney

    April 8, 2017 at 9:20 pm

    #25 Very good points! Not much gentlemen’s parks left now!

  28. TGC

    April 8, 2017 at 11:55 pm

    #25 “The only places on the Continent which remain healthy, safe and relatively intact are those still owned and managed by Indigenous people.”
    Unlikely to be true!.

    #19 and #22 smoke from bushfires in Victoria caused serious problems in that State last week- (April 2-9)
    It is quite possible there should be a preference for no ‘hazard reduction burns’ at all and we just manage as best we can wild fires in any summer season- including life and property losses.

  29. john hayward

    April 9, 2017 at 12:08 am

    It was Lang Hancock who pointed out that mesothelioma was simply one of the prices you had to pay for (his financial) progress.

    Similarly, respiratory disease is one of the prices we have to pay, along with huge public subsidies of private and foreign businesses, water pollution, soil erosion, corruption, copious spin, and scenic degradation, for the progress that logging supplies.

    John Hayward

  30. Clive Stott

    April 9, 2017 at 4:11 am

    #28 Not exactly.
    You are locked into the current buzz words “Hazard Reduction Burns” and what you are inferring is if we don’t do these HRBs there will be life and property losses. Scaremongering in fact!

    There are other alternatives my friend.

    If you are not just trolling go here and be swayed by these alternatives: http://cleanairtas.com/departments/alternative-solutions.htm

  31. Robin Charles Halton

    April 9, 2017 at 6:59 am

    #24 Russell, that is a primary school child’s statement when you suggest that FT burn on weekends when the EPA have gone home!

    If you have not heard of Burning prescriptions, then do not comment it makes your assumptions of blame totally ridiculous!

    #25 I have read parts of Bill Gammages book, it was portraying the “ideal” Australia pre settlement. Some of the content is rather ho hum!
    It is likely that certain groups of indigenous people left to their own devices still successfully practice traditional burning either for their own purposes or as a part of government sponsored programs where they are paid to perform these tasks to protect “their” land.

    As Europeans we had to adapt to burning practices to survive in this country.
    Recent years of lapse of burning due to Green inspired mythology have left us in an awkward position as in Victoria and Tasmania has been clearly shown by more recent devastating wildfires

    Green politics, no burning does not work so this has left the fire agencies performing extensive “catch up” fuel reduction programs that will go some way for protecting communities against the dire effects of future wild fires.

  32. PHilip Lowe

    April 9, 2017 at 8:42 am

    It is a fact that some 40,000 people die of polluted atmosphere disease in the UK every year.It is mostly blamed on diesel fuel.Aircraft emissions and wood burning stoves are ignored.Political?Does Launceston still suffer from appalling pollution in winter?How many people die from atmospheric pollution in Sydney and Melbourne every year.Is it an acceptable sacrifice to the God,’Car’.Are people being fed a
    ‘Like it or lump it policy’,and what could people do about it anyway?

  33. Russell

    April 9, 2017 at 11:52 am

    Fact, Trevor. You’ve never been out of the little hamlet of Perth, Tasmania to know any different.

  34. TGC

    April 9, 2017 at 12:40 pm

    #33 Well, that may be true!

  35. Russell

    April 9, 2017 at 12:40 pm

    Re #31
    Errr, no, FACT! Let’s see which days FT burns this Autumn shall we?

    If you have not heard of Indigenous Burning, then do not comment it makes your knowledge of burning for production and safety totally ridiculous!

    If you read parts of Bill Gammages book, then you don’t know the full story. Typical head in sand european learning, when only those parts that suit one’s purpose are used and the rest discarded. Sounds like the whole FT operation, doesn’t it?

    “The Biggest Estate On Earth” by Bill Gammage was a compilation of evidence gathered over ten years of early explorers’, surveyors’ and ‘bushmen’s official accounts of what they found AFTER settlement. There were mile after mile of harvested stooks of grain ready for threshing in fields of grain grasses which were upto their horses shoulders with heads larger than those of our modern wheat crops. They reported riding through such areas for days on end. There were numerous granaries scattered throughout the countryside. All produced with fire.

    The ‘burning practices’ were already in use, but they were done to perfection with the intimate knowledge of the landscape, including how to benefit the wildlife as well.

    There were no “WILDFIRES” because there were no monocultured thick PLANTATIONS.

    There are still no wildfires where Indigenous Australians still burn. Their fires are so cool you can literally walk through them. I have personal experience with this.

    I suggest you didn’t read to ingest the book at all, and have never been to any Indigenous owned and cared-for land to be so ignorant to the facts.

  36. Shirley Brandie

    April 9, 2017 at 2:27 pm

    How terrible that residents have to deal with this constant smoke! There must be better ways then to risk the health of so many people.
    It is 2017 and yet this practice of forestry burning remains the same? Why?

  37. Clive Stott

    April 9, 2017 at 2:41 pm

    #31 You have got blinkers on Robin Charles Halton.
    Go here:


    Do you want me to read it to you?

  38. John Biggs

    April 9, 2017 at 3:38 pm

    Judicious fuel reduction burns shouldn’t and wouldn’t create this amount of pollution. Something else is going on: FT at their old pyromaniacal tricks again.

  39. Chris

    April 9, 2017 at 4:20 pm

    Suck it in and Fergie’s Son will open a bed for ya, where and when will depend on the Gut Whiners budget.

  40. TGC

    April 9, 2017 at 6:07 pm

    #38 “FT at their old pyromaniacal tricks again”
    Now, what “tricks” are they?

  41. Pete Godfrey

    April 9, 2017 at 8:59 pm

    Just wondering if any of those people in favour of Hazard Reduction burns, as opposed to Back Burns can actually name any Towns or Cities that were definitely saved from wildfire by previous Hazard Reduction Burns?

    Just curious.

    Didn’t work for Canberra, Hobart, Dunalley or any of the towns in Victoria that burnt in the Black Saturday, Ash Wednesday fires.

    I would be interested to know of any towns and see any evidence of where the hazard reduction burns definitely worked.

  42. Simon Warriner

    April 9, 2017 at 11:04 pm

    The use of “hazard reduction burn” and “regeneration burn” seems to confuse some commenting here.

    Two entirely different activities in two entirely different environments for two entirely different purposes.

    Hazard reduction burns should be taking place in a drier environment burning minimal fuel at a slow rate and should, if properly conducted, not produce the enormous quantities of smoke we see forming the mushroom clouds which collapse and make life hell.

    Those clouds come from the so-called regeneration burns which are consuming vast quantities of logging residue, often wind-rowed and still damp, from frequent observation. Quite how it aids regeneration on the cleared, and un-burnt ground is a mystery, of the same order as FT’s inability to make a profit selling logs to Gunn’s and Ta Ann.

    Still, we are talking about an industry whose ranks have long included those with an interesting ability to confuse truth with a good story.

  43. TGC

    April 10, 2017 at 12:04 am

    #41 may be on the right track- no hazard reduction burns- just let fires destroy as they will.

  44. John Maddock

    April 10, 2017 at 12:09 am

    Excellent point, Pete #41.


  45. Ted Mead

    April 10, 2017 at 1:26 am

    Clean, Green Tasmania, what an oxymoron this has come to be!

    Let’s face it! – The people who run this this state are clueless environmental vandals. They are politicians void of cognitive reality who merely like to play god with nature.

    FT & TFS have united in their ignorance subject to plenty of $ being thrown around.

    Whilst there are some sound arguments for PWS bio-diversity and habitat management burns, most Fuel Reduction burning outside immediate residential zones appears to be a waste of time and resources, particularly when it come to the hectare-based equation of torching vegetation for the sake of numbers. Similar action in Victoria has shown that fuel load reduction objectives are not being met.

    Although many years away. – I can foresee the end of FT’s burning program, but as for fuel-load hazard reduction, every time we witness a large bush fire in the state the government’s response will be an uptake on more burning to follow.

    Climate changes are not helping. This is symptomatic to our folly. What we are doing with induced fire is changing the vegetation types, drying out the wetter bush even more, and inviting more fire-conducive environments.

    In the case of catastrophic conditions arising, these burns are enhancing the likelihood of more devastating uncontrollable fires.

    This is not rocket science, it’s common sense, and common sense has never prevailed in Tasmania.

  46. garrystannus@hotmail.com

    April 10, 2017 at 11:48 am

    Hi Clive, I have a question for you or for readers. I can see in this article a link to NASA’s MODIS satellite imagery:

    The image is captioned ‘Smoke from Victoria?…’ Unfortunately the link doesn’t work for me. Does anyone know how/where to access satellite images such as the one we see in this article?

    I used to have access to MODIS Terra and Aqua images (at the time of the big smoke event some years ago 2010? – mentioned by John Hawkins (#5) and Pete Godfrey (#18). It seems as if that sequence of images is no longer continued. There seems to have been some complete loss of the database for particular terra and aqua satellite images, maybe in 2012.)

    If someone could point me in the right direction, I’d very much appreciate it.

  47. Pete Godfrey

    April 10, 2017 at 11:59 am

    #43 comment from Troll House. You have not come up with an answer as usual you just throw inane comments and run.
    The only way that a hazard reduction burn can protect a town or city is, that it is done not long before a fire comes through and that it is large enough to cover all weather conditions.
    -Such as Extreme Heat causing the fire to become a crown fire.
    -Strong hot winds doing the same.
    -Wind changes that can cause the fire to change direction and come at the town from an unexpected direction.
    Basically you would have had to burn right around the town as a hazard reduction burn.
    Or go space age and put a fireproof dome over every settlement.
    Pulling up all the vegetation and concreting over the earth may work in Longford, but not everyone wants to live that way.

  48. John Biggs

    April 10, 2017 at 12:43 pm

    #42. Thank you Simon for defining regeneration burns so clearly. They are what I mean by “FT’s pyromaniacal tricks”. Get that #40.

  49. max

    April 10, 2017 at 12:58 pm

    # 45 Spot on. Clean, Green Tasmania, what an oxymoron this has come to be! I have lived in, walked in, hunted in, observed and enjoyed the Tasmanian bush for over 70 years and you are 100% correct. The first plants to establish after a fire are the very plants that benefit from fire, go to any area where a fire has gone through and in two years you will see the results, grasses, bracken, prickly wattle, all the plants that will burn and create an even worse fire.
    For all those that think the present policies of fuel reduction burns are a good idea reread 41, 42 and 45. The trade off for the present fire reduction policies are smoke that kills more people every year than actual fire, a down turn in tourism and bigger and not better fires into the future. Prior to the present clear felling stupidity we had good working forests without the need to burn for regeneration and forestry had a future, along came the short time grab for cash called woodchipping and we have the present forestry disaster.

  50. Jack Lumber

    April 10, 2017 at 12:59 pm

    re 41 Have a “GOOGLE ” and you will see papers ranging from parliamentary enquiries to personal opinions re burning in Australia and yes its a topic which polarises people .

    Like many issues it has been both politicised and “suffered” as a result of madcap media coverage . There is plenty of evidence to confirm that water bombing is a great salve for the masses but spending the money on maintenance of tracks , fuel levels and household/suburb designs would be a better use of $$ . But alas politicians and the people now expect ” Elvis and Co” to be o standby , when in the end there are only a couple of things that stop a fire once it is going BULLDOZERS , PEOPLE and a CHANGE in the weather .( that’s another topic that should be considered as we all agree the climate is changing )

    Prevention is better than fighting fires .

    It would be unfair to say unless you have have had the misfortune or experience of being in a fire event and campaign ( there is a difference ) as we cant all be part of everything . But i will say it changes how you see things and it changed the way I see fire and why i support planned fuel reduction programmes

    Have you read anything by Stephen Pyne ?? I would recommend you read both his books on Australia and if you have time his books on other parts of the world . Australia is not “unique” in the discussion re fire and land management


    Ahhhh Fuel reduction burns in Hobart and Dunalley ???

    re 42 what a first seems an attempt to make sure all understand what are different burn types degenerates into the usual diatribe showing a lack of understanding of a third buring type … windrows post reversion to agriculture

    Regeneration burns in natural forest do not involving windrowing .

    Where you referring to ENGO sector who are indeed an industry in themselves ?

    Somewhat surprised given your usually measured comments which are respected .

    re 45 you using the term “commonsense” is as like POTUS45 saying “believe me ” and can you explain this vegetation change theory you have regarding hazard reduction burning

  51. Robin Charles Halton

    April 10, 2017 at 5:10 pm

    #37 Clive, Most likely lucky that most of the reduction burns in particular those closer to major towns and hamlets have been done before the heavy rains in the north of the state late last week.

    Now with a drop in SDI’s due to rainfall with shorter days and colder nights lessening the rate of soil litter drying, the optimum burning conditions have passed.

    Slower lower intensity reduction burns from here on unless they Forestry high intensity burns otherwise would generate too much smoke.

    Well lit high intensity forestry burns late in the season when there is a window of a few days need to be lit rapidly and that may include a number of burns simultaneously with the higher likely hood of minimal smoke dispersion immediately after burning.

    Anyone can pick the timing and method of burning practices to pieces but both Tasmania and Victoria had nasty wildfires in recent years and by now more than gut full of false Green propaganda over the past three decades, the greater majority of the community demand protection, broadcast burning is far more effective than waiting for wildfires and fighting them off firebreaks.

    As one of my great fire management mentors often mentioned during our inter agency training sessions breaks over a few beers back in the 70’s before Peg Putt put a stop to Parks fuel reduction burning, ” the black earth policy” is best.
    Our mentor, one of FT’s greatest fire management CEO’s of all time was right and that still holds today and will beyond our expected life time!

  52. TGC

    April 10, 2017 at 6:47 pm

    #17 “…there is an excellent article by Lenore Taylor in the Guardian.”
    Another tautology?

  53. TGC

    April 10, 2017 at 6:56 pm

    #47 “Pulling up all the vegetation and concreting over the earth may work in Longford, but not everyone wants to live that way.”
    Too right they don’t- certainly not me! Whereabouts in Longford has this been done?

  54. TGC

    April 10, 2017 at 7:03 pm

    #4 “8Get that #40.”
    #49 I can recall large fires around Launceston in the 1950’s- what they were I don’t know- but they produced a lot of smoke. And that was pre-woodchip days.

  55. max

    April 10, 2017 at 9:25 pm

    # 54 Unfortunately there were idiots in the 50’s, the same as there are today. People are going around burning houses down for fun, does that make it right? One of the out dated fire practices of the past was burning stubble and the same argument that is used today was used then, It’s good for the next crop. It is no longer done, it was poor practice. Now stubble is plowed in to enrich the soil. Isn’t about time that forestry woke up to the fact that this is the 21 century, not the stone age.

  56. mike seabrook

    April 10, 2017 at 9:50 pm

    any squeals from the smoked out wine grape growers
    at a critical time approaching harvest

  57. Frank again

    April 10, 2017 at 11:28 pm

    Re #56- NO – simply too buzzy and too close for comfort.

  58. Russell

    April 11, 2017 at 12:21 am

    Re #51
    Absolute bunkum!

    Wildfires, wherever thay have occurred throughout the whole planet recently, almost always were directly linked to plantations, including in Canada at a time of year when fires just shouldn’t occur.

    In Tasmania, the only proper reduction and regeneration burning I know of which has successfully been done annually since the 1960s is by Kevin Charlestone on his 467 hectare property in the Vale of Belvoir. It has been done in mosaics, just as the Indigenous Tasmanians used to before they were stopped from continuing their practices by the european invaders.

    He would burn “mostly in October, early November but the weather’s got to be right.” Reference: RM Williams Outback Magazine – Grazing for biodioversity.

    There you have it RCH. Right method at the right time of year in the right conditions.

    FT burns ONLY on weekends whether the weather suits or not, at the WRONG time of the year, using the WRONG methods.

  59. Simon Warriner

    April 11, 2017 at 12:32 am

    Jack. I did briefly consider including the regen burns where the trash is left randomly, but it has been a long while since I have seen one of those. They were generally smoky due to high moisture content as well.
    Windrows prior to reversion to agriculture are interesting, have seen a few, but they have tended to be left longer and burnt faster and cleaner. I guess it is because farmers get a cost/benefit boost from having less trash left behind to clean up.

    And yes, I have become fairly cynical regarding the spin, disinformation and worse that emanate from the forestry industry. If you don’t like it, a cup of wet cement might do the trick. If my pointing it out offends you so much you should have perhaps done something about it. You might note that I do try to be even handed and point out the failings of the ENGO sector when relevant as well. If you know Kent Lyon you might ask him what sort of behavior pisses me off.

    Thanks for the compliment about my “usually measured comments which are respected” though, rarity adds value.

  60. PHilip Lowe

    April 11, 2017 at 12:52 am

    why do people still go on building houses in such fire prone areas?

  61. Clive Stott

    April 11, 2017 at 7:20 am

    In answer to a few comments:

    Mike #56 re wine grape growers….
    See the photo in the main article with the title “Exeter is down there somewhere in the stinking smoke”?
    I took another shot at the same time which shows grapes in the foreground being harvested flat out by a number of people. They were working their butts off!
    As Frank again says in #57 they were very busy.
    Can’t see how the grapes around here have not been smoke tainted. I certainly was.
    But shhhh we are not allowed to mention smoke and grapes because if there is a hint of smoke in the wine it could ruin the local wine industry…perhaps sadly that could be a reason we haven’t heard anything from the growers?

    #51 Robin I referred you to a press release from Richard Colbeck in #37 explaining the benefits of mechanical clearing over controlled burning….which we have learnt really means uncontrolled burning in certain instances.
    I even offered to read it to you as you obviously cannot read because as predicted you are still going on more about burning!
    Incidentally, I asked TFS how many types of burning there are because new ones seem to be popping up all the time to confuse. Your ‘broadcast burning’ was not on their list, so come on get with it man.
    Anyway here is what Colbeck’s release said…
    Senator Colbeck said mechanical fuel reduction is a relatively new concept in Australia despite being widely adopted in the United States and Canada.
    “There are number of benefits from this practice as an alternative to controlled burning, including community concerns over air quality, not being limited by weather conditions and managing fuel loads that are close to built-up areas,” he said.
    “The mechanical removal method will also create the potential of utilising a market from the sale of biomass fuels – this will provide additional benefits the community, the industry and the environment.”

    Further Robin, I call on you to name your great fire mentor with his ‘black earth policy” otherwise I feel you have dreamt it all up.

    Hi Garry in #46: You mention NASA’s Lance Rapid Response Terra and Modis satellite images.
    You will be happy to know they are still being collected and displayed.
    Sorry, in the main article it looks like only part of the link showed up.
    Not to worry, here is the full link: https://lance-modis.eosdis.nasa.gov/cgi-bin/imagery/realtime.cgi

    Thanks all for the comments and I really must thank Linz from TasTimes for promptly publishing this article and the EPA air section for having such a high up-time on all their fixed real-time air monitoring stations around the state.

  62. Mark Temby

    April 11, 2017 at 10:50 am

    #52 the answer to your conundrum lies within #16 but, be warned, it is multiple choice.

  63. Barney Rubble

    April 11, 2017 at 11:17 am

    #24 Russell, do you not drive a car nor burn wood for heat or contribute to polluting this planet? How about read a paper made from a dirty pulp mill in Asia as we didn’t want a world class mill in our backyard?

    Fuel reduction is about protecting you and others from Mother Nature when she unleashes her fury.

    Embrace it, accept its an essential required control measure and that climate change and pollution are inevitable consequences of mans occupation of this planet.

  64. TGC

    April 11, 2017 at 12:34 pm

    #58 “…but the weather’s got to be right.”
    How is that guaranteed?

  65. Russell

    April 11, 2017 at 12:37 pm

    Re #63
    “do you not drive a car”

    Yes, and I am taking measures to make my own bio-diesel from used cooking oils which is much less polluting than fossil fuels.

    “nor burn wood for heat”

    Yes, from dead trees which are completely dry so the effect is minimal, especially compared to FT’s practices.

    “or contribute to polluting this planet?”

    Yes, but again no more than when the planet was being lived in and used sustainably.

    “How about read a paper made from a dirty pulp mill in Asia as we didn’t want a world class mill in our backyard?”

    No, I don’t read newspapers (fake noos, you know). I do collect those not sold every week to save them from being burned and use them as mulch which goes back into the soil. You should see all the worms and castings living between the pages.

    Regarding the “world class mill”, that is just crap. That filthy toxic idea died because it was never ever going to be commercially viable and was snuck in the back door at the 11th hour, and you know it. Where are the many touted buyers?

    Fuel reduction is about protecting you and others from Mother Nature ONLY when it is done properly. Read #58.

    I will never accept spiteful wanton polluting and destruction as part of mans’ presence on this planet. This is a modern greed-based fossil-fuel-driven phenomenon and completely uneccessary.

  66. TGC

    April 11, 2017 at 12:38 pm

    #63 is asking the pertinent questions too many TT’ers appearto avoid thinking about

  67. Robin Charles Halton

    April 11, 2017 at 1:24 pm

    #58 Russell, agree with you the Charlestons near Lake Lea who burn the white grass (poa) on their property annually at will which mimics traditional burning, they are in an ideal position to carry out what is a very simple burning of Poa which carries very low fuel loads.

    Virtually all burning today either on button grass plains, various inflammable scrub types and under burning in dryer forests.
    This requires pre planning with execution during spring or autumn by professional fire practitioners who burn only when the window of opportunity prevails.

    Many burns can be conducted within a short space of time especially when helicopter hire and available manpower remains in readiness for action.

    Time management, costs are also considered within budgets there is no time to fiddling about with the Dreamtime approach as you have previously mentioned with indigenous groups with time on their hands in northern Australia which are relatively simple burns when compared to the complexities of the Tasmanian and Victorian vegetation types.

    Properly established and healthy plantations generally have little effect on the spread of wildfire.

    FT are probably the most professional in the area of both low and high intensity burning, burns are only carried out when conditions are right, burning prescriptions and guidelines were established decades ago with some minor modifications from time to time.
    PWS have a specialised group of field fire practitioners.

    TFS has still a lot to learn in the field, but working along side FT and the PWS field specialists I would imagine that eventually with permanent staff and long term volunteers they should improve their Fire management knowledge as time goes on!

  68. Pete Godfrey

    April 11, 2017 at 2:27 pm

    #63 I asked a question in post 41. As you seem to be in favour or fuel reduction burning maybe you could point out where it has saved towns and cities from fires.

    Fuel reduction burns in my experience do not protect from fire for very long. The main cause of catastrophic fire damage to human habitation is from Crown Fires. Crown fires can start many kilometres or even tens of kilometres away. Any fire that is driven by enough wind or up a steep enough hill in the right conditions will jump into the crown of the trees. From there it does not matter how much fuel reduction burning has been done to the undergrowth.

    Just for reference, I was a volunteer firefighter for many years in Northern N.S.W, being deputy captain of our brigade for about 3 years.

    I stood on the beach at Lorne in 1983 and watched the fire come down the hill that burnt many houses. The fire did not go near the ground. It was burning down a steep hill, basically just a ball of rolling flame that leapt across the top of the trees. The fire was igniting trees that were hundreds of metres ahead of the fire front.

    No amount of hazard reduction would have stopped it.

    Unless the whole area had been cleared.

    In Tasmania we have an area of legislated hazard reduction burning. It will not work unless it is targeted.

  69. Clive Stott

    April 11, 2017 at 2:35 pm

    #63 Fuel reduction does not have to involve burning.

    There are better alternative methods.

    Barney Rubble if you are not Robin Halton under another name I refer you to comment #61 and what Colbeck said.

    If you are Robin Halton under another name, do you want me to read it out to you again?

    If you want to read about the Tamar valley pulp mill go here http://cleanairtas.com/gunns-pulp-mill/gunns-pulp-mill.htm

  70. max

    April 11, 2017 at 8:37 pm

    # 68 On February 7, 1967 at 12 o’clock I was having lunch at a cool store at cygnett. It was a perfect day, not a cloud in the sky, we sat in the sun and enjoyed our break. At 12-30 we went back to work and found that our welders had no power. On going out side i saw something i will never forget, a ball of fire rolling down the top of the trees on the opposite hill. it didn’t appear that the tree were even burnt, in fact the fire jumped a gully and the trees in the gully never burnt. From what I observed a grass fire ember ignited the eucalyptus vapours creating a fire ball which started a fire in the tree tops, then the forest floor litter. From what I observed close up and in fear of my life, if reduction burns had been carried out prior to 7/2/1967 nothing would have changed that days outcome. On hot days eucalyptus trees give off a highly volatile gas, on hot days dry grass will readily burn and give off air born embers. I think that so called reduction burns that add to global warming, release health destroying 2.5 particulate and have a bad negative outcome for our tourist industry needs a serious re think.

    Of the 110 fires, 88 were found to be deliberately lit, although the exact causes are unclear. Some were from burn-offs started in the days prior.

    After all this time nothing has changed, another 1967 is just waiting for the right day and all this smoke that is being inflicted on us will not stop that day, sorry.

  71. Claire Gilmour

    April 11, 2017 at 11:25 pm

    #23 Robin Halton.

    Scared some of them away with my beauty – here is reality I guess!

    I mention it at appropriate times, because not everyone has a personal experience, or is willing/wants to tell the experience.

    FT’s Camdale office actually – the heads. Smithton office is just a cursory office. But you should know that.

    Who singularly has the money to engage the government (FT) in a law suit? Crikey it’s taken years to raise enough money just to get machinery in to clear the road of burnt dead falling trees, instead of hand sawing my way in and out.

    FT and government left me with a life time of problems.

    FT is not above the law you say?… of course they are !… they have government politicians changing laws to suit at any given time …

    You say in comment # 67 … Properly established and healthy plantations generally have little effect on wildfires.”

    All Bullshit!!! What is a ‘properly established’ plantation? Please give the appropriate legal meaning? Also with ‘healthy plantations’?

    Where, when and how did you last work for FT? When was the last time you experienced a wildfire near plantations?

    Must be lovely to be retired, how do you do that? after being an FT worker? and then spend your hours pushing a dead-end industry? Nothin better to do? Perhaps you could grow something real and positive instead of being part of pulling the environment down?

    I could suggest I do a crowd funding thing to take on FT to court … could you suggest a lawyer and possibly contribute?

  72. garrystannus@hotmail.com

    April 11, 2017 at 11:44 pm

    Thanks for the link, Clive. Gee, is it seven years since that (2010?) big smoke event in the Tamar! The technology has changed in the meantime, since the big crash and MODIS data loss in 2012/2013. Before, we had to open uncertain pdf files to find what we might. Now the areas included in the satellite swaths can be seen before opening. A thumbnail I’d guess you could call it. While it now seems to me (2017) that Tassie was mostly out of the April satellites’ passes over Australia, there were a few pix which suggested (as did your article) that this recent smoke event in the Tamar (April 2017) might have had Victorian origins/contributions. And the pix suggested East Gippsland as the origin of an amount of smoke that could be seen to be moving south, though I could not find one which showed the Vic smoke reaching the Tamar Valley. Certainly smoke could be seen entering Bass Strait/The Tasman Sea, but not on the Tasmanian mainland.

    Without having explored the new link [ https://lance-modis.eosdis.nasa.gov/cgi-bin/imagery/realtime.cgi ] deeply, at first glance it does not seem to have some of the viewing options that used to be there before the MODIS crash (e.g. I recall being able to choose between a whole of Tasmania view and a view of the North of Tas down to 500 metres altitude (?)). Probably got my memory wrong etc.

    …while I believed that in 2010 we (including John Hawkins, Pete Godfrey and yourself) assembled an amount of information which strongly supported the smoke-out as being of local origin, and which resisted the claim that our woes were due to Victorian burn-offs – first from the coast west of Melbourne, then next they said the smoke was from the east … East Gippsland.

    …we knew – and we demonstrated – that it was Tasmanian smoke that had blanketed Launceston.

    But now…
    … I accept that this (2017) time it might have been Victorian smoke – albeit mixed with local provenance.

    Given the above…
    …this is my point, Clive: What is our government doing to protect us from the poisoning of the air we breathe? Why are we not now protesting – and litigating – against the Victorian government? Why is the state of Tasmania not bringing a case against Victoria, on the grounds of polluting our state’s airsheds?

    PS: Max is ‘true blue’ and is a thinker. I know him. Without going into a song and dance, I can say that he has always had a kindly and informed knowledge of the matters that I have discussed with him. Pete (Godfrey) is in the same category – in my opinion.

  73. Claire Gilmour

    April 12, 2017 at 1:11 am

    Well I also proved FT wrong on all their autumn fire accounts in 2010 – and it was a huge undertaking to gather the info to do so… but no thanks necessary Garry, I guess.


    Some of what FT are burning now are the dead plantations burnt in 2013 and 2016 wild fires.

  74. Russell

    April 12, 2017 at 2:16 am

    Re #64
    It’s guaranteed by waiting for the right time. Like crossing the road when the pedestrian lights tell you it’s safe. …

  75. Russell

    April 12, 2017 at 2:23 am

    Re #67

    Indigenous Australians used fire EVERYWHERE! Your ignorance isn’t worth the oxygen …


  76. Robin Charles Halton

    April 12, 2017 at 2:39 am

    #69, Clive with due respect I am not the Barnaby Rubble that you refer to and I am unaware of of the identity of the new arrival.

    I have also read the report by Dr Raverty that you kindly provided, and agree with his findings especially those of the Gunns Pulp Mill for which I have never supported from day one knowing full well that the Tamar River pollution and knowing that the Tamar Valley is a natural air inversion trap and that you folk living in the Launceston area can cop smoke for up to a period of 6-8 weeks during the shoulder seasons (Spring and Autumn) mainly coming from other areas up north and from Victoria.

    I dont deny the smoke nuisance factors associated with fires however broadcast fuel reduction and proper wet forest intensive burning are both proven and established methods for offer a better level of fire protection in lieu of damaging wildfires and productive eucalypt forest regeneration.

    Given the benefit to the community having fire danger levels that are being potentially reduced by both States which could be considered a small price to pay for the unpredictable nature of future wildfires in both Victoria and at home here in Tasmania.

  77. abs

    April 12, 2017 at 11:17 am

    there is ongoing conflation of regen burns and fuel reduction burns by pro forestry commentAtors. RCH does so again when he identifies smoke ‘nuisance’ (better refered to as ‘health risk factor’) as arising from both types of burns in his second last paragraph #76, then he seems to refer to this hazard as a small price for community to pay for fire danger levels reduced (last para).

    what is the benefit to community of regen burns?? (rHetorical question Robin, as I don’t subscribe to the usual spin from pro forestry crowds)

  78. Russell

    April 12, 2017 at 11:50 am

    Re #76
    You have no proof. Give us the proof.

    Two examples (#68 & #70) show how fuel reduction at ground level has zero effect towards wildfire prevention.

    The problem is at the canopy of the plantations.

    Besides, the wet fires FT lights to choke us with smoke are in the middle of vast bare earth patches where trees and every other bit of vegetation has been clearfelled. There is nothing near these piles of wet logs and debris to catch fire.

    You lie Robin.

  79. Ted Mead

    April 12, 2017 at 12:01 pm

    #76 – Unfortunately, yet predictably you continue to display your clueless tunnel-visioned bias towards pro pyro activity.

    Constantly burning Tasmania’s wet forests will ultimately transform them into a drier forest type that will only exacerbate the likelihood of broad-scale wildfire.

    Wet forest types provide a natural buffer and can supress fire from moving quickly.

    Just wait until the next catastrophic fire that gets into the plantations or mono-cultured regeneration areas. The fires will be uncontrollable and devastating!!!!

    It’s a time bomb, and when it eventuates you will no doubt naively claim it happened because there wasn’t enough fuel-reduction burning going on.


  80. William Boeder

    April 12, 2017 at 1:21 pm

    Robin, Jack Lumber, MJF and other interested party’s to the forest smoke harms rife across Tasmania.
    The long continued burning of forest residues, or post logging waste as it was referred to in the days past when 2 former Forestry Tasmania persons were to become these2 F/T CEO’s were ultimately given their professional foresting name tags per the ANU, one has to wonder if these 2 students had on gaing their name tags were the reason for the suddenly introduced eccentricities into the Tasmanian GBE logging and burning supertitions.
    The peope in Tamania suddenly had to understand about the failure of logging in this State, the first being the kept low stumpage fees, then the departure of the transparency of their business operations.
    Of conspicuous note is those earlier years that every new and often loss-making action of a new and mysterious undertaking was immediately authorized, then given a Commercial in Co\nfidence rating, (one can look to the non-profit logs to China export program) So we saw every action chosen by GBE Forestry Tasmania was soon approved no matter the lack of intelligence by them and no concern to even bother about profit.
    Inevitably the more logging would mean the greater amount of logging waste was created, thus the more of the wood smoke volumes rpoling or entering the lower atmospheres of Tasmania that would increase its volume of health dangers, public nuisance and the rest.
    So began the intensive smoke dasngers as did the burning of waste across Tasmania, included the burning of whatever part of Tasmania that could be carried out with immunity.
    One of ANU students was Bob Gordon, the other was Evan Rolley. Then there was an another student not yet mentioned in my comment, yep, Hamed Sepawi of the now invading profiteeringTa Ann fame.
    I am indebted to John Hawkins for his excellent factual report which is linked below that provides a number of helpful references, now accessible to all via the internet thus publicly available material as contained therein. http://oldtt.pixelkey.biz/index.php/article/the-underbelly-of-forestry-tasmania.-julia-pledge-on-pulp-mill.
    One of the primary undertakings of Evan Rolley in his earlier years with Forestry Tasmania was his zealous pursuit of an aerial ignition device that could lay a trail of fire across and or among any designated targets in Tasmania that were deemed as “waste post -clear-fell-harvested native forest flora”
    This became the practice and the methodology chosen by the Forestry Tasmania brains-trust, yep’ this would suit the purposes of getting rid of all post harvest waste, simply by the agency of aerial ignition Evan Rolley style.
    Thus Tasmania has to consider itself fortunate that during the earlier time given saw the rise in number of Rolley created devices that were given trials and tests (despite the mounting costs attributed thereto) by thay persevering pyro-design engineer, who I am led to believe had already set his future sights on controlling all the forests across the entire of Tasmania.
    Nowadays logging waste happens to be a saleable product (given that 2/3rds of what was left behind after logging for Ta Ann previously for the wood-chippers of Gunns Ltd) the logged coupe may even have provided at least 4% of saw-logs, (not5 %,) of the odd saw-log grade timber that may or not have been encountered.
    to be continued/

  81. Robin Charles Halton

    April 12, 2017 at 1:22 pm

    # Claire, take it as you wish as I have always been puzzled as to why all the drama over your claims of damage by FT to your private property!

    It now seems that there were difficulties now way beyond re-approach between yourself and the GBE at the time as I have no detailed knowledge of your claim as it is none of my business really!
    Anyway but I am not seeking to undermine your views but I am sorry for the circumstances that you are left with that appear to create a permanent barrier of communication between yourself and forestry!

    My concerns for forestry surround the wide scale investment in eucalypt plantations by Gunns, private investors and FT thinking that we would have a world class Pulp mill on our doorstep.

    It remains as a discussion point for Tech Foresters of my era as to why our State forestry department did not place more emphasis on maintaining an ongoing native forest harvesting agenda aiming at a high quality timber market instead of following Gunns fatal lead of developing a pulp mill when the era for pulp mills was closing in Australia instead in favor for developing countries like Chile, and SE Asia!

    The irony even extends beyond the Pulp Mill expectation that a more recent arrival on the scene as Ta Ann who after theri arrival wanted nothing to do with HWP either!

    There is no reprieve either as the Greens wish to close down all native forest harvesting when it was they who “previously” insisted that the future of forestry should be with the development of HWP pushed by former Greens leaders Milne, Brown and Putt.

    Everybody needs to learn from their mistakes the most stupid in my opinion was when FC/FT invested heavily in HWP’s, Gunns and others that is another story with similar results, the illusions of the Greens have never resulted in any positive outcomes for forestry either.

    Most locally trained Tech Foresters who are now retired including myself support an industry that is smaller but is self sustained based on harvesting areas of older regrowth to
    sustain the production of high quality sawlogs.

    Unfortunately FIAT, Ta Ann and beholders of the TFA legislation which has driven the industry to harvest younger wood combined with more frequent wildfires has in fact driven the forestry industry underground to appease Labor’s illusions with Greens support.

    With proper forest management and only by FT as STT Forest Minister Guy Barnett, it is inevitable the 375,000ha of former State Forest areas in limbo will require opening up to maintain an ongoing supply of mature forest for industry.

  82. William Boeder

    April 12, 2017 at 1:23 pm

    Thus his energies were now being exerted against the common will of Forestry Tasmania and Tasmania generally.
    The waste that had been roughly calculated in the past Tasmanian native forest coupes, post their clear-fell-logging, was provided by Forestry Tasmania in a 2007 report (not included in the John Hawkins report) being in the amount of 2/3rds of the entire floral growth in each of the native forest coupes.
    The mantra of the Evan Rolley CEO period had thereby since been the methodology implemented to destroy (by fire-incineration) the non-acceptable tree species for wood-chipping purposes, so being most of these tree species being of indigenous native forest species that were specified not suitable for wood-chipping, so they were mostly destined for the smoke heaps.
    These tree species were identified in a 2007 report on forestry practices by Richard Flanagan.
    I could provide further links however I believe 2 per comment is the rule on Tasmanian Times.
    I do hope people understand that the bogeymen in this whole forestry mis-management and of its ugly offensive dangerous to health propensities are fully authorized by the Tasmanian State government via the false similing Guy Barnett, the minister for the degradation of Tasmanias range of native forests intended for destruction or complete denudation.
    Without Ta Ann in Tasmania there would be some hope of honest regrowh or regeneration of mixed species that may reach its 90 year cycle, other wise we the people must ignore entirely the snarky claims otherwise by the State’s new (the giggler) minister Guy Barnett.

  83. TGC

    April 12, 2017 at 3:36 pm

    It is a matter of great regret that all the most knowledgeable and experienced forest people can be found only on TT- none in the industry itself.

  84. garrystannus@hotmail.com

    April 12, 2017 at 4:35 pm

    Thank you Claire (#73), for the link to your ‘Ashes to ashes’ article. I don’t recall ever seeing/reading it and I must congratulate you both on that piece of work. While I’m in this ‘acknowledgement’ phase, could I also give you recognition for your years of pro-environment endeavour. And I recall contacting you/Charles and obtaining a copy of one of your hot-spot screen-saves that had something to do with my own then area of interest – the big smokeout of the Tamar Valley in March 2010.

    So thanks for that too, Claire. Now, looking back at your ‘Ashes to ashes…’ article, while after these seven or so years, I’m unable to get the grey matter moving sufficiently to process/synthesise the various info contained in it, I can yet appreciate the work and skills that went into the production of that document, for example the artwork that was superimposed on to the photo of 24th April 2010, showing a trashed and still smoking ‘regen burn’ a week after. It’s an evocative image that you produced and I can only guess at the amount of time and of emotional energy that went into producing that great doc.

    On the other side of the coin, I point out that my recognition of Clive S., John H. and Pete G. was for their work in regard to the smoke-out on 16-17Mar2010, while your work was in regard to a series of FT burns a month later, in April. By all means, be proud of what you did, but please don’t confuse it with the March 17 smoke-out.

    PS: A month or two ago, in a thread comment, you supplied some information perhaps with regard to where some of our native forest timber/logs were ending up. It was a piece of valuable information, and I – flat chat – put it on the backburner, intending when I had a free moment, to thank you for it in the relevant comment thread. Unfortunately, though I searched for your comment more than once, I never did find it.

    I wish you a Happy Easter.

  85. Clive Stott

    April 12, 2017 at 4:36 pm

    This is significant!
    Robin in #76 acknowledges his love of deliberate burning around areas of Tasmania and the mainland causes smoke to come into the Tamar valley.
    He has been asked to provide proof as to the benefits of all this burning but the best he can do is acknowledge community fire danger levels are being “potentially” reduced as a result.

    Start answering some questions please Robin; you jump all over the place like a fire ant!
    1) Who was your great fire management mentor that believed in the black earth policy in comment #51?

    2) Show us where fuel reduction burns have saved lives or communities in Tasmania?

    3) Do you agree with Colbeck? He says there are alternatives to controlled burning, including community concerns over air quality, not being limited by weather conditions and managing fuel loads that are close to built-up areas. The mechanical removal method will also create the potential of utilising a market from the sale of biomass fuels – this will provide additional benefits the community, the industry and the environment.” http://cleanairtas.com/departments/investing-in-bushfire-prevention-strategies.pdf#sthash.6mORCoW9.dpuf

    4) Constantly burning Tasmania’s wet forests will ultimately transform them into a drier forest type that will only exacerbate the likelihood of broad-scale wildfire?

    5) “Burning prescriptions” There is no safe level of particle pollution so as a result, what about doctor’s prescriptions?

    6) Same height, same age plantations change wind patterns and increase fire risk?

    Please short answers Robin numbered accordingly. If you can’t answer these simple questions you have been robbing your fires of good oxygen and wasting people’s time. No more hot dreams!
    People may like to put some direct questions to Robin.

  86. Tim Thorne

    April 12, 2017 at 6:52 pm

    As one whose respiratory function suffered severely on Friday 7/4 because it was not possible to “stay indoors”, especially without advance warning, and as one who strongly doubts the story that all the smoke came from Victoria, I have a question.

    Why cannot pyrolysis be used?

    If the answer is to do with cost, then I have another question. What price has been put on my lungs?

  87. Jack Lumber

    April 12, 2017 at 7:18 pm

    seems like there is a fair bit of “pre heating ” going . …..and in perfect timing with the Easter period a degree of flagellation

    but seriously …There is ample work by Gould , Cheney , Lacy and others and maybe have a look .

    A word of warning … these people are scientists , use evidence have peer reviewed papers and “worst” of all some are from those well known den of “academic tomfoolery ” ANU and UniMelb

    That said the experience and knowledge of RCH , Claire and Clive S is very important as part of the learnings

    BUT i dont see anyone else providing first hand experience re Euc fires

    To rephrase a quote that has appeared on TT before …..” Of course plantations are an increased fire risk when compared to a field full of potatoes , but they are pretty insignificant compared to the fuel loads that will accumulate in native forests that are left unmanaged. ”

    Clive where is the evidence that the current plantation estates are being mismanaged with respect to fire ?

    Ted …its Easter so going to be nice this “constant burning is changing vegetation in Tas > Evidence please … and you did say WSF >>>DSF

    Have a good break TT people and for William and Russel lets hope over the break the time of reflection brings you what you seek .

  88. TGC

    April 12, 2017 at 7:57 pm

    There’s stupid and there’s ridiculously stupid-so-
    ” Show us where fuel reduction burns have saved lives or communities in Tasmania?”
    About the same category of the effectiveness of the programme to keep elephants out of Tasmania.

  89. Chris

    April 12, 2017 at 9:05 pm

    Who needs to worry about fires protecting Tasmania when the bio security of airports and ports is TOKEN only.
    Well may the minister say we have no worries, but my dog using friend tells me the Spirit is only given token attention. all leave is cancelled and work place moral is lower than Erica Betz boots, overworked and very tired is no way to run a Government department.
    Promises of extra dogs has gone to the Kennels.

  90. max

    April 12, 2017 at 10:20 pm

    # 87 Jack. what are the fuel loads that will accumulate in native forests that are left unmanaged? I was born in the bush and have seen more bush fires than I care to recollect. The unmanaged forest are all most impossible to burn, it is the managed forests that burn. In an unmanaged forest limbs and fallen trees are usually damp, even wet and even when dry and they are set alight they do not move, they are not the problem. The fuel load that causes bush fires are the plants that love fire and the more we burn the bigger the problem. Button grass plains are a good example, they need fire and they burn readily but all over Tasmania the native forest have survived to the edge of the plains. If the current thoughts on fuel reduction were correct, there wouldn’t be a Tarkine.

  91. John Maddock

    April 12, 2017 at 10:32 pm

    William #82 comments on the development of burning in the Rolley years, but if I’m not mistaken, a truck mounted laser igniter was tested earlier than that.

    Can anyone confirm? It would be nice to know my memory is not playing tricks.


  92. Frank again

    April 13, 2017 at 4:30 am

    Re Tim Thorne’s question @ #86 “Why cannot pyrolysis be used?”

    This would require a plan that is based on a responsible vision of avoiding waste.
    As long as the mindset by the people and their leaders refuse to open their mind to proper planning, regionally responsible, comprehensive, total quality thinking – only more of the same old will be the future scenario.
    It is simply still too easy to change, too comfortable to just hang on the more of the usual, to do things with what the people know.
    Just make (complex) things “go away” as they would require more thinking about the future opportunities.
    It is the same thinking as just like placing a feedlot into a fast flowing river- just flush the opportunities away…
    Just like simplistically raking the sewage sludge and muck with a scallop drench into the middle of the river channel to send it away out of sight, out of mind , out of the municipality boundaries.
    Different topic – same thinking minds. …
    Only time will tell why, how and when things may change for the better.

  93. Clive Stott

    April 13, 2017 at 5:48 am

    #88: Ridiculously stupid “to keep elephants out of Tasmania”
    Not so TGC! http://www.abc.net.au/lateline/content/2013/s3873911.htm

    Just one of the alternative methods to burning I am arguing to keep the smoke down.

    #87 “where is the evidence that the current plantation estates are being mismanaged with respect to fire?”
    Jack where is the evidence they are being managed with respect to fire?
    You must have seen all the sickly dried up or dead E.nitens around the place up here in the north. You reckon that is managing them well with respect to fire?
    Max answered you in #90

  94. Clive Stott

    April 13, 2017 at 7:01 am

    #72: Garry in addition here are the Tasmanian subsets, You can look at the 5th, 6th and 7th April.

    earth.nullschool.net showed wind direction and speed as 355 degrees on the 5th at 22km/h, 20 degrees on the 6th at 22km/h, 0 degrees on the 7th at 53km/h. All close to or exactly a southern wind.
    Satellite images show smoke leaving Vic burns and coming to Tas.
    As mentioned previously Tasmania also had fuel reduction burns ‘burning now’ on these days.
    There were other burns going on around our state.

    I think it is fair we wait for the EPA air section’s full report into this pollution. I have every reason to believe it will be thorough.
    I am not sure if there is any cross-state legislation to cover such events (if deliberate smoke is deemed to have come from Vic) but I have asked the question.

  95. Robin Charles Halton

    April 13, 2017 at 9:14 am

    #85 Clive, answers to the best of my knowledge.

    1. In house business, external disclosures “most strictly forbidden”!

    2. Frequent burning along highway edges on Crown Land, State forest and private land from Murdunna- Eaglehawk Neck- Oakwood 1960’s till 1980’s by Forestry Commission and Rural Fires Board volunteers.
    Provided a dual purpose benefit for Tasmans and Forestiers peninsulas’ protection of mid age regrowth stands on State Forest as well as reduction of highly inflammable scrub around dwellings carried out annually as an insurance of shared fire protection measures.
    Received as an excellent PR exercise by the public in the area.

    3.Nope not really!
    Permanent de facto firebreaks currently exist as Transmission Line easements with 4×4 access, there are a number of these around Greater Hobart.
    Hobart City Council maintains some regularly maintained clearings behind fence lines and adjoining bushland.
    Parks maintain slashed fire breaks around some of their inflammable scrub prone Reserves, South Bruny and Lime Bay comes to mind.
    Firebreaks are only effective if fuel reduction is kept under control on surrounding lands or as a backup for back burning but only when conditions are favorable!

    4. A very good question Clive.
    Far better for wet forests are left to develop for longer periods 80-100 years for both ecological and stand quality management reasons.
    This is not the case with serial intruder Ta Ann who have been given open sesame via the Tas Forest Agreement legislation 2013 as it has resulted in giving priority for harvest of younger age regrowth for a product that less valuable than for growing on to future high quality sawlog as well as stabilising the wet forest environment over a longer period.

    I would imagine that widespread areas of earlier harvest could create ongoing fire management problems as older forests would remain damper for longer during the drier seasons.

    Unfortunately politics in recent years has driven forestry management askew as best practice would be to spread harvest in mosaics over the broader area of available coupes within roaded State Forest prior to the TFA which has reduced the area remaining for harvest.

    I am still waiting for a media report by FT on the Circular Head fires, regrowth losses and contingent arrangements for salvage harvest, ongoing stand management or what ever!
    Seems as if FT are left in a short handed position one wonders how the hell they will effectively manage harvest around future fire management.

    5. Better to ask current Fire practitioners and the FPA about existing policy as I am not up to date on these pressing issues that affect persons with existing health conditions.

    6. Should make no difference to weather patterns what so ever as long as well established plantations are properly managed from thinning to clearfell. Plantations carry a lesser fuel load than native forests which should add to their capability for managing against fire.
    Its far safer to back burn from a firebreak where NF adjoins HWP than from one with NF forest on both sides( fuel load).

    Clive I wish you a Happy Easter with blue skies.

  96. Alison Bleaney

    April 13, 2017 at 11:38 am

    If you look at https://www.volker-quaschning.de/datserv/CO2-spez/index_e.php you’ll see that burning wood had the highest carbon dioxide emissions of any fuel. And the current approach to (not) ‘managing’ plantations is why they are contributing to CO2 emissions and land and water (and air) degradation. And fire which enters a current fast rotation, closely planted, monoculture eucalypt plantation will just take off….the plantation is euphemistically described as being managed only for the purposes of profit for the owners. The plantations are the elephants in the room. Why are they still being supported? Money and greed and attempting to barter for other gains would seem to sum it up.

  97. John Maddock

    April 13, 2017 at 2:00 pm

    Re 85 Clive, Q 1.

    As I remember, Eric Lockett (who is still around – he had a letter in the Merc. a few days ago) did a lot of research on fire. I think it was related to east coast conditions, and (as I remember) his records were lost in a fire.

    No idea if he was RCH’s mentor.


  98. Russell

    April 13, 2017 at 5:41 pm

    Re #83
    The Union which represents Forestry has only 500 members so I guess there’s not much experience in those numbers seeing most of them are desk jockeys, truck drivers, or harvester operators with no actual arborical experience like that possessed by the traditional millers who selectively took trees to make sure they had more for their family businesses forever.

    Note that the millers and forest industry are dead against opening up the Tarkine.

  99. TGC

    April 13, 2017 at 11:41 pm

    #98 “Note that the millers and forest industry are dead against opening up the Tarkine.”
    But,one suspects, only out of an anxiety that a
    ‘war’ will break out- not necessarily because they don’t recognise the value in the trees as ‘timber/wood

  100. Clive Stott

    April 14, 2017 at 12:19 am

    I posted comments in regards to the linked article by Specialist Medical Advisor Public Health Service (Dr Scott McKeown) here: : http://oldtt.pixelkey.biz/index.php?/pr-article/elevated-levels-of-smoke-in-the-north/

    Two Tasmanian medical doctors are charging $59 per litre of bottled ambient air.
    If our tidal volume at rest is 500ml then you get two breaths for $59, maybe.
    If you take a deep breath you get considerably less.

    Suck it up Tasmania!

  101. Claire Gilmour

    April 14, 2017 at 12:53 am

    #81 Robin – don’t recall you putting your shoulder to the wheel and speaking out when FT/Gunns/and both libs and labs were taking the forests you now lament and now want more of that Tasmanian increasingly rare and endangered forest opened up. When did you leave FT?

    What is that word in the title of the article …

    FT and the industry now have to ‘suck’ it up! …

    All the FT spin of 90+ year turn around … means they have to wait now – perhaps for decades! because they used and abused it too early, too often.

    Just because they were stupid shouldn’t mean the rest should be opened up to them.

    Otherwise it’s like starving, dehydrating, cutting the legs off a shorn sheep and still expecting it will grow some wool … !

  102. Claire Gilmour

    April 14, 2017 at 12:55 am

    #83 TGC – cutting down, burning, poisoning, and growing monocultures and diversity lacking forests does NOT an industry make. One needs the special little growers too!

    In the same vein big business logging/timber companies outstripping the little saw miller does not an industry make. One needs the artisans, not just pulp and ply.

    Been plenty of ex-FT people and other industry players who have seen the worst and written on TT and in other media.

  103. Claire Gilmour

    April 14, 2017 at 1:05 am

    #84 Garry you wrote an email to me personally at the time re my article after it was put on TT …


    and then giving me a copy of yours which you said TT couldn’t put up, and I told you it was probably because it was too huge in memory and you should do it/download it in a PDF file. I guess we are all getting older … which is really scary, because who is going to take over and do the hard yards in the future?

    My article actually related to all the media hype and lies, yes ‘lies’, FT and the gov of the time were putting out in the media at the time on specific days!

    Don’t try and belittle me with my little art work – that were nothing, it took half an hour – having been a desk top publisher on the side … of having co-owned an IT/software programming company … it’s the INFORMATION, that is/was important! I had to ‘capture’ all the info from FT and sentinel on about an hourly basis, then correlate with the FT letter – (sent via letter – not emailed to me) info I had requested from FT. Then correlate every FT coupe number and map. It looks easy when all put together, but when the FT/ gov specifically make the information hard to gather, then it takes a long time.

    Forget the pics … it’s the info that shut them down! And that’s why they have changed how they are supplying info. My system proved they could be taken to task in realtime and that’s why they changed their reporting system.

    It would be so easy for the government to show on an hourly basis where fire/smoke would go from their fires, (through coupes numbers, not just smoke above) regardless of what type of fire … but they are hiding!

    It should be like a storm, flood, cyclone warning … because they have the info, wind currents, all the weather details, the ‘crispness’ of the forests …

    Forestry Tasmania have followed a specifically mapped outline of clearfell in Tasmania. It mostly follows wet forests. Hence much smoke!

    FT/gov have all the info, maps etc that can prove how much they are drying out Tasmania …

    Now why have the Tasmanian Liberal government stopped pursuing opening up contentious forests through the upper house?

    Isn’t there an outside interest who wants to spend/buy into Tassies apparently FT’gov ‘open forest market’ … but only if they can be assured Tassie ‘looks’ clean and green …!!!

  104. Robin Charles Halton

    April 14, 2017 at 1:49 am

    #97 John, Nope he wasnt! he worked for FC’s Silviculturist Branch on many areas of NF management and was responsible for producing our standard guidelines for recording regeneration surveys.

    #98 Russell, What rubbish, one of the largest sawmills at your end of the state will be seeking out decent size sawlogs and soon!

    The Forestry Union involved has no idea of forest sustainability nor the implications for forest management the TFA legislation 2013 has brought about.

    Guy Barnett has a rude shock coming for all of the TFA bullshit which has resulted in too many coupes being cut as younger and younger stands are being slaughtered, some of only age 50 years of age within our prime wet forests.

    These cutting schedules raise the question of what has happened to FT’s 90 year bench mark!

    Ta Ann/TFA supported by Labor, the Wilderness Society, the Greens and the other misinformed signatories are have brought about a Forest Agreement that does not reflect realistic forest management nor does it ever allow for the forest environment to reestablish itself over a longer period of time.

  105. Derbytas

    April 14, 2017 at 3:37 am

    As one who has come late to this debate I appologise if my comments are going over old ground but I have two points to make…

    1. I thought it was accepted that eucalypts (except for regnans) only needed disturbance and did not rely on fire for germination of seed?
    Now here I would have to say (from observation) that regnans on dry soil will germinate with disturbance and do not need fire to germinate seed.

    2. Fire speed is hampered by moisture, both in the plants and in the soil. The more moisture the more smoke and the more smoke the slower and cooler the fire.
    It stands to reason that the cooler the fire the less damage is done to the soil biota. The less damage done to the soil biota the faster the process of organic decomposition. The faster the soil decomposition the sooner the trees can begin uptaking nutrients and get back to growing.

    As things stand at the moment evaporation in Tas (most of it anyway) is at a greater rate than the precipitation rate. Therefore it stands to reason it is better for the soil for any forest debris to be left in situ in order to prevent evaporation acceleration.
    yes this would leave a greater fuel load but the soil moisture would be maintained at a (much) higher level and thus the fires would be slower and cooler.

    I think it was Kirkpatrick that claimed (eucalypt)forests were more prone to fire after clearfelling. This might be so if the soil moisture was lessened by greater evaporation. I should imagine that even were the harvest trash left on the floor the evaporation level would be higher because a standing tree gives a multilayer effect on UV access to the forest floor.

    That having been said there is the added advantage of having organisms contributing to absorbing CO2 by photsynthesising… as well as being available for their Shinrin-yoku effect.

  106. Russell

    April 14, 2017 at 12:14 pm

    Re #104
    “The Forestry Union involved has no idea of forest sustainability nor the implications for forest management the TFA legislation 2013 has brought about…..These cutting schedules raise the question of what has happened to FT’s 90 year bench mark!”

    So I am correct …


  107. garrystannus@hotmail.com

    April 14, 2017 at 1:09 pm

    Claire (#103): re your … “Don’t try and belittle me with my little art work”: My comment (#84) was in response to your (#73) where you had written … “– and it was a huge undertaking to gather the info to do so… but no thanks necessary Garry, I guess.” So my intention in that (#84) reply of mine was not to belittle, but was to acknowledge the plus side of your “years of pro-environment endeavour”. My compliment was meant to be just that, and certainly was not an attempt to belittle. I liked that artwork – and much else – and as I’ve already written, I regard your ashes-to-ashes doc as something you can be proud of.

  108. Andrew Ricketts

    April 14, 2017 at 4:15 pm

    Currently on Reserved land the Parks and Wildlife Service (PWS) ostensibly assess the Environmental impacts of fuel reduction burns, what they term Strategic Fuel Management, using their internal Reserve Activity Assessment (RAA) tool.

    That RAA tool has four levels of assessment and management burns are done mostly, it seems, at the RAA level 2 – purely a desktop analysis. PWS generally do no on ground surveys to see what State and Nationally Listed Species may be present.

    The PWS’s RAA tool is documented (2010) but as it is not statutory it is not subject to the option of Judicial Review. For burns I would describe the PWS’s RAA assessment as perfunctory but it usually has a nice coloured map.

    The PWS RAA is meant to list things like all the State and Commonwealth Threatened Species and to identify vulnerable flora and vegetation communities which may be affected. Of course such burns have an adverse effect on Old growth values, the fire can penetrate the hollows and destroy these ancient trees.

    Then after the RAA the PWS apparently develop a Burn Plan based on the RAA. The Burn Plan represents a decision of the PWS.

    My understanding is that for large burns in Reserves, PWS use a Napalm product called Flash 21. They light the entire perimeter from the ground and then aerially drop Napalm in a flight grid on the wildlife within the designated area.

    I find it hard to imagine that any Listed Species, or any other species for that matter, would survive having Napalm dropped on it, bearing in mind the perimeter is already alight, with no escape route even for animals that may be big enough to attempt to get away.

    In the past small patch burns were conducted but it seems now large, industrial-scale burning of the landscape, especially securely reserved land, is being conducted, in a reckless and irresponsible manner across Tasmania. These new type burns represent an intensification of the activity of course.

    There is a concern at the EPBC (Commonwealth level about inappropriate fire regimes but for the EPBC Act to operate a proposed burn must be referred (seeking a Controlled Action) to the Minister for Environment but such a referral needs to have a likelihood of a significant impact on Nationally Protected Matter of Significance such as Endangered Species. However the EPBC does not currently list as a Listed Key Threatening Process the activity of an ‘Inappropriate Fire Regime’.

    If you think northerners have seen last of the smoke from the burns this year then please bear in mind PWS is proposing a One thousand Hectare (so-called) strategic burn of the Reedy Marsh Conservation Area. This proposal must be about 30% of the whole reserve.

    As well Crown Land Services are planning a Five Hundred and Sixty Hectare Burn of the Gum Scrub Creek area at Virginstow. This existing informal reserved land is caught up in the 356,000 Ha and the stupid Unlocking the Forests Bill.

    Both the Reedy Marsh burn proposal and the planned burn at Virginstow are West of Launceston and the Tamar valley. Both areas are dominated by old growth forest with plenty of Listed Species. The Gum Scrub Creek area proposed to be burnt is the whole (100%) of the (former) Informal Reserve, which was established under the RFA but which Barnett now stupidly wants to log. There are no sawlogs, just smoke and mirrors!

    I noted Greens’ Leg Council candidate, Ms Anglesey’s (I thought she was a staffer to Whish Wilson) comment advertising ongoing Green support for burning Tasmania’s forested environment.

    Whilst the ill-informed Greens so naively support the $28. 5 million of so called Hazard reduction burns, there will never be a single vote from this seriously environmentally concerned constituent. I’m sure I’m not the only citizen of Tasmania who feels this way.

  109. Clive Stott

    April 14, 2017 at 5:04 pm

    #105: Derbytas interesting, but we are still talking about burning and if you do get a chance to read earlier comments you will see there are alternatives.
    Agreed, we do have to look after these little critters that live in the soil.

    As far as eucalypts go they will sprout almost anywhere, in packed down gravel, cement or bitumen cracks, pretty much anywhere there is a disturbance.
    This rubbish that they have to create a hot ash seed bed for them to grow in is just that, rubbish.
    They are hardy, they don’t have to be treated like kids and put to bed!

    One major point though when you mention cold burns. They are the smoky burns that go on for ages. No we don’t want that; the smoke is far to unhealthy.
    Forget open burning, shift to the more acceptable alternatives.

  110. Clive Stott

    April 14, 2017 at 5:20 pm

    #97: Thank you John for the information.
    RCH has given me an unsatisfactory answer to my Q1.
    I mean Robin has retired now (you wouldn’t think so at times)and I guess his mentor has too; can’t see what is the big deal.

    Ok Robin. Was Eric Lockett your mentor who believed in the black earth policy?
    Come on mate you can tell me.

  111. John Hawkins

    April 15, 2017 at 2:49 am

    I flew into Launceston from Melbourne on the morning of Monday the 3rd of April.

    We tracked over Devonport in a Jetstar flight just before midday, I sat on the right hand side of the plane facing the front.

    I counted 4 fires with large smoke plumes to the West of Launceston to a height of some 3000 feet. It was a still morning and the smoke was going straight up but tracking east.

    The sky was clear from Melbourne but there was a yellow smoke haze over Tasmania as far south as the eye could see.

    I remember thinking the bastards are at it again!

  112. Derbytas

    April 15, 2017 at 5:02 am

    Clive #109 I certainly do not advocate any burning, at all. I would much rather see all the eucalypt forests evolve (where they are able) into rainforests.
    I wish to maximise LAI at all times.
    I only mention that rather than create a fast and furious fire the forest litter has a tendency to slow the fire down and that that is better for the forest…once a fire has started.
    Of course some fires are started by lightning strikes but in comparison the number of man made fires it is a small percentage .
    I am sure there will be some ref somewhere but that was anecdotal from a (past)Regional Manager FT.

  113. Robin Charles Halton

    April 15, 2017 at 8:25 am

    #110, Clive, I already told you via my # 104 that Eric Lockett was a Silvicultural Branch Native Forests Researcher, worked as a part of the team developing guidelines for regeneration techniques, on the whole the use of fire was important and still is for healthy regeneration outcomes.

    All of Eric Lockett’s Research findings, both past and more recent plus Technical guidelines are available on the Forestry Tasmania website.

    Fuel reduction burning is a different score altogether and was the responsibility of Fire Management Branch to research and establish guidelines for its use for protecting forests from the adverse effects of fires originating within State Forest or from surrounding lands.

    Black earth policy was a loose descriptive term with reference for areas burnt satisfactorily to reduce fuel loads on a regular basis which has no official standing, mate!

    The need for reducing fuel loads over a wider range of vegetation types over all land tenures is now more important than ever as it appears that uncontrollable wildfire activity is on the rise in Tasmania, Victoria, New South Wales, South Australia and Western Australia due to what is believed to be another cycle of climatic change which has also occurred in centuries past!

    Fuel Reduction has moved way beyond the protection of State Forests into Reserves and Community protection especially for those seeking a rural lifestyle or living on the cities fringes without any understanding of living to close to the bush in hilly locations.

    As an experienced fire practitioner I am quite capable of assessing the nature of the land and its fire management capability, retirement and wish regular visits to enjoy the bush has only increased my observation skills.

  114. Russell

    April 15, 2017 at 12:03 pm

    Re #113
    Uncontrollable wildfire activity is on the rise in Tasmania, Victoria, New South Wales, South Australia, Western Australia, the USA, Canada and South America due to the rise of PLANTATIONS, especially eucalypt.

  115. Ted Mead

    April 15, 2017 at 12:59 pm

    #108 – Yes Andrew, well said and comprehensively explained as to how this state has evolved into an irresponsible pyromanical heaven for the ignorant and insensitive, which has even permeated into the naïve and gullible Green party.

    One can only hope the Greens are gutted even further at the forthcoming state-election as they seem to serving no one beyond their own delusional ideology.

    As far as conserving and maintaining ecological values of our environment we are destined to hit rock-bottom with the present fire management human-regime practices.

    Regardless of how much Tasmanians chose to play Fire God with the landscape it won’t make a skerrick of difference when the catastrophic conditions arise.

    Meanwhile #109 – Robin is still out there staggering around with the of aid his walking stick, blinkers and monocular thinking he has the answers to human ecological management through the poorly-planned random striking of a matches of what has taken billions of years to evolve. – A true myopic Liberal if there ever is!

  116. John Maddock

    April 15, 2017 at 1:05 pm

    #110 Clive. He says it was not Eric Lockett. Ask him if it was Andy Skuja.


  117. Rossi

    April 15, 2017 at 1:23 pm

    Re #114 You forgot Spain and Portugal also.

  118. John Maddock

    April 15, 2017 at 1:26 pm

    Clive #109

    My experience agrees. As I understand it, this idea that fire is essential for a good germination of eucs came from the PhD study in the Florentine (I think) valley in the late 50s (I think) by a bloke whose name I can’t bring to mind (Max …? age, & so much info stored !) for the paper mill at Boyer, which was concerned about running out of old growth trees – which has happened, btw.

    Maybe RCH or someone else will enlighten us on the natural succession of species after a fire, but it is clear that although fire might be desirable to provide an advantage to eucs., it is not essential.

    On a tour sponsored by FT, I asked one of the scientists if anyone had tested the proposition that the fire destroyed the chemicals put into the soil by living trees to prevent competitors germinating. Answer: “no”.

    On my farm, I have a number of very old bluegums growing in ungrazed pasture.

    Following the drought which finished in 2009, those trees now have a wheatfield of young bluegums growing around them. No fire, no soil disturbance. My supposition is that the old trees stopped producing the inhibiting chemicals, for what ever reason.


  119. Barney Rubble

    April 15, 2017 at 1:41 pm

    @#63 Russell

    Taking measures to make your own bio diesel, so in other words you burn high emission fossil fuels and continue to pollute the air, right oh then……

    Burn wood from dead trees, don’t we all do that? What is so special anout the dead trees you burn that don’t polite the air? Where do you get these from please?

    Sustainably, look it up and research this topic, you obviously lack knowledge in that area.

    How do you collect the old used papers and transport them? You would be well advised to research natural mulching techniques whilst looking up sustainably.

    The pulp mill designed for the north Tamar would be far cleaner and under our strict controls compared to shipping logs and chips overseas then buying back the product. Just because it doesn’t burn in your backyard doesn’t excuse you from your share of guilt in the pollution.

    You are as much to blame for pollution on this planet as any so take off your rose coloured glasses and accept your part of the problem. These burns are to save the greater population from devastating effects Mother Nature throws at us. Every bit helps come those days.

  120. John Maddock

    April 15, 2017 at 5:34 pm

    Further to my earlier comment re the clearfell/burn/sow regime adopted by FT and it’s predecessors, the researcher whose name I couldn’t remember was Max Gilbert.

    Here’s the link to his obituary, which is well worth reading – arguably essential reading, considering the topic of this thread, bearing in mind that it was published in a forest industry publication:


    Incidentally,although I haven’t read his thesis, my understanding is that he warns that adopting his methods for regenerating euc forest would result in the loss of special species – so beloved of Harris and Denman.

    Go figure.

    And finally, he was a Hobart High School boy, and not a product of the ANU forestry sausage machine.


  121. Clive Stott

    April 15, 2017 at 8:02 pm

    #112: Derbytas thanks for that and your comments.
    By the way how is your Mayor holding up with LGAT after his childish comments in my view re logging and burning near the bike trail? Imagine the smoke!
    I must be one of his so called fringe sooks so I phoned him to let him know.

    Not sure if this letter was published by the Examiner…
    New Dorset mayor, Greg Howard, showed utter immaturity the way he tried to put down the many people who object to the trashing and burning of a beautiful forest next to the N/E bike trail (Examiner 29).

    To say, “It is just that fringe group who is sooking about everything the way they do” is wrong and uncalled for. It does nothing to resolve forestry issues in his municipality.

    I lived and worked for Health in Scottsdale for many years and supported people throughout the N/E who were on medical oxygen because they couldn’t breathe.

    Councillor Howard knows smoke from these clear-fell burns makes people ill and can shorten their lives, especially the young, the elderly, those with lung and heart disease and it causes cancer.

    Why would he want to do that to members of his own municipality? This is putting forestry before health. It is another case of people being told to lock themselves indoors. It prevents them enjoying our environment.

    We had forestry out in the N/E before and it failed miserably.
    Tourism is the new way forward and Councillor Howard should grab it while he can. People are over clear-felling and burning and don’t like having smoke blown in their faces.

  122. Clive Stott

    April 15, 2017 at 9:40 pm

    #113 Robin don’t you mean you are a PAST fire practitioner? You must be an old fart like me,even older if you reckon your wood burner is going to outlive you. What a yardstick.
    Bet you are going to be cremated.

    Robin you are talking about something you learnt over a few beers from your great fire management mentor who believed in the “black earth policy” (comment #51) but now you won’t say who it was.
    Fair go, I take it you must both be out of the game by now.
    Who was it? Give credit where it is due.
    Sometimes I think you must have had way too many beers back in your learning days.

    #112: Derbytas the early warning system for lightning strikes has a few IT hiccups (well it did a couple of weeks ago)
    It was meant to be up and running real-time on the BoM website by the end of last year.
    In the meantime there is http://en.blitzortung.org/live_dynamic_maps.php?map=22 I guess.

    #108: Thanks Andrew for your information.
    Perhaps Ms Anglesey needs to clear up the Greens position in relation to deliberate burning creating toxic smoke?
    There are alternatives.

  123. TGC

    April 15, 2017 at 11:48 pm

    #121 “Tourism is the new way forward…”
    Well, tourism has a place in a mixed economy- but if it becomes Tasmania’s major concentration t he State will go broke.
    Almost every year now we are told of ‘record numbers of tourists’ to Tasmania- the last number over a ‘million’- and yet at every turn there is criticism that our health and education systems-not to mentions infrastructures- are in despe rate need of greatly increased funding.-there;s even concern about funding replacements for our Spirit vessels-major contributors to the tourist inflow.
    So what’s gone wrong? Well, nothing really, it’s just that ‘tourism’ is a very limited contributor to State income-that is to say,money that government can use to fund essential services.
    Those in the ‘trade’- well, some of them-do quite well but their operating costs are high -big labour inputs- so there’s little left to ‘tax’- and much of what there is -income tax- goes initially to the Feds.
    Ask any tourism operator for their frank and ‘objective’ assessment of the value of tourism to the State-and their replies will not be encouraging.
    That’s one of the reasons why -by a wide margin- a pulp mill in the Tamar Valley- or somewhere- would trump the tourist alternative every time.
    #121 and others of like views are deceiving themselves.

  124. Robin Charles Halton

    April 16, 2017 at 12:51 am

    There is some interesting information about the research and development of the use of fire as a forestry tool for anyone with an interest in the subject of Fire Management in Tasmania’s forest.

    This may divert attention to the real world instead of turning the subject matter of the article into a series of frivolous witch hunts by our in house sleuth Clive.

    Type in History of Innovation, Eighty fire years of……………by Forestry Tasmania.

    In particular turn to the chapter on Fire Management page 113 and read about the amazing developments by staff in bringing up to the high standard to where we are today with the advancement of technology since the 1967 Southern Tasmanian wildfires.

    Put your dusty old copies of the Melbourne Truth, Playboy, Pix, People and Stern back under the bed where they belong!

  125. Derbytas

    April 16, 2017 at 4:28 am

    This Ted Talk is probably one of the best arguments for stopping all forest burns…


  126. Russell

    April 16, 2017 at 1:14 pm

    Re #119
    Read the whole answers Barney boy.

    Re #123
    The NT hasn’t gone bankrupt on the back of the tourism boom in the 1980s, has it? In fact, tourism has led to an increase in the permanent population and other industries’ growth. It has gone from the highest unemploymnet rate in the country in the 1980s to the lowest today (http://lmip.gov.au/default.aspx?LMIP/LFR_SAFOUR/LFR_UnemploymentRate).

    Tasmania on the other hand has been sent bankrupt by successive Governments continually propping up one of the lowest employment sectors (forestry) for decades and even spent the State’s Super funds and robbed all the other GBEs to do so.

    The Tasmanian forestry industry union has about 500 members. A substantial minority by anyone’s standards. There’d be more jobs in McDonalds within Tasmania.

    Get your facts right Trevor.

  127. John Hawkins

    April 16, 2017 at 1:59 pm

    #123 TGC

    Your beloved Pulp Mill much favoured by the Liberals would be up and running if it was a financial proposition.

    It was totally reliant on taxpayer funded largesse Dams, Pipeline, the East Tamar Highway, MIS scams.

    The hundreds of millions was spent and lost by the taxpayer.

    Tourism is not the greatest card in the pack but smoking the tourists out and rolling back World Heritage Listing of our forests are policies only adopted by the Liberals, the Murdoch Press and the brain dead.

  128. Clive Stott

    April 16, 2017 at 3:06 pm

    #19 Barney not true when you mention that dirty stinking rotten turd of a pulp mill as Peter Cundall so correctly called it.

    It was never assessed properly and wasn’t even assessed for PM2.5’s so not sure what you are talking about when you say “our strict controls”.

    Go here if you would like to read some pulp mill facts; http://cleanairtas.com/gunns-pulp-mill/gunns-pulp-mill.htm

  129. Clive Stott

    April 16, 2017 at 3:43 pm

    #123: TGC you are a sore loser still going on about a pulp mill in the Tamar Valley.

    Where do you live? Perth Tasmania?
    Well the majority of people in Tas that were/are against it have done you a favour because you would be breathing its pollution by now big time.
    Why on earth would you be advocating for something that would ruin your own health; sure doesn’t make sense, but understandable.
    The world has moved on since the critically non-compliant pulp mill was on the agenda.

    Quote me completely please, not just selectively.
    I said, “Tourism is the new way forward and Councillor Howard should grab it while he can.”
    I said this in relation to the North East remember? Read it again.
    And they are not my words, this is what we are being told by guess who? Go figure.
    I am not that smart to think up something like that!

  130. Barney Rubble

    April 16, 2017 at 6:08 pm

    #126 I Read them all and each was a flippant response whilst dodging the issue of your own pollution/emissions. First one is a perfect example “yes and I am taking measures to create my own bio diesel……..” Sounds more like you read something in a newspaper (manufactured paper from some dirty polluting mill most likely) or watched a five minute YouTube film. What exactly have you done in taking measures? Hmf……typical response I expect of a relocated mainlander trying to save the world whilst ignoring their own impacts. Thanks but we have it under control……

    #119, we would have more controls if in our own state than in some dodgy mill in Asia where they don’t give a care in the world about pollution. We send our chips over there, have them processed in a polluted mill then buy back the product and blissfully ignore the impacts we caused. That’s not right and you know it. The hypotheticals are all we have as the mill never was allowed to be built and controlled this we will never know what it could have been (dirty or clean). Similar to the C cell nobody wants in the state but happy to make the mess and send it somewhere else.

  131. Clive Stott

    April 16, 2017 at 7:23 pm

    #130 Barney I mentioned the lack of controls in this state.

    You want a log truck thundering along every two minutes with a full load of logs going to feed a pulp mill?

    You want the native forests cut down?

    You want people to breathe PM2.5 particles?

    You want people to breathe fugitive emissions?

    Then you say “Thanks we have it under control…”

    Have a look at my main article and don’t try and tell me we worry about pollution, it is a clear case of things not being OK. Same with a lot of other Tasmanian articles on Tas Times.
    Barney tell me, what do we have under control?
    A dodgy mills in Asia as you put it does not mean we have to have a dodgy mill here.

  132. TGC

    April 16, 2017 at 8:28 pm

    #127 Good to see “the brain dead”. getting a run again.

  133. Pete Godfrey

    April 16, 2017 at 8:37 pm

    #119 Barney you said “These burns are to save the greater population from devastating effects Mother Nature throws at us. Every bit helps come those days”

    Just wondering which bit you are referring to.
    – Not sure where you live but in the North we have many plantations that have been bulldozed out, or felled. The new owners who are converting the land back to agriculture are burning all the waste, in a very green state. Creating lots of smoke pollution.
    Is that the bit that will save us all?
    – Or maybe you are referring to the farmers putting in pivot irrigators who bulldoze their trees out pile them up an burn them?
    – Or is it the deliberate destruction of wet forests and the burning of what is deemed waste in an attempt to convert the wet forest into dry fire prone forest, maybe that bit is going to save us?
    – Or maybe burning button grass plains somewhere over in the Tarkine coast, where only a year or so back the place was threatened by escaped fires. ?

    Maybe you could point out where these so called burns that are going to save us are being carried out?
    Maybe you can point out where a so called “Hazard Reduction Burn” has actually proven to have saved a town, community or city from wildfire.
    I did ask this question way back in the comments but no one has been able to answer. Maybe you could.

  134. TGC

    April 16, 2017 at 11:13 pm

    #129 “Well the majority of people in Tas that were/are against it have done you a favour because you would be breathing its pollution by now big time.” A great example of the gross exaggerations that were flounced to terrify Tasmanians during the pulp mill ‘debate’- as well as being plain stoopid!
    and, clearly, #129 has never been anywhere near a line of motor vehicles or walked about a busy city.
    or even Launceston.
    and…#123 “Well, tourism has a place in a mixed economy-“- maybe #129 didn’t read that far?

  135. Clive Stott

    April 17, 2017 at 3:15 am

    #134 TGC you are probably right about me not reading that far; I am used to you trolling one or two liners. Welcome to the debate.

    Shocking thing that pulp mill would have been re air pollution, absolutely shocking.
    Stack it on top of what you can see in the photos above in the main article and wouldn’t that be just dandy.
    Stack it on top of what you kindly raise thank you in regards to Launceston and motor vehicles.

    You are right, Tasmanian’s were terrified and rightly so, we can agree on that.

    Wouldn’t your mixed economy tourists have just loved being in the toxic stink trapped under our inversion layer!

    TGC have you ever worked in or lived near a sweet smelling non-polluting pulp mill?
    Nope neither have I.

  136. Clive Stott

    April 17, 2017 at 5:32 am

    #124 Robin, read the Innovations by Forestry at http://www.forestrytas.com.au/uploads/File/pdf/pdf2009/innovation_web.pdf and checked out the smoking section you mentioned.
    What got me the most was when i read the index and saw how much had to be innovated to look after our forests that had been looking after themselves very nicely for how many years?
    Very strange really.

    Interesting 4Corners article here: http://www.abc.net.au/4corners/content/2004/s1132778.htm

    Robin when you said Black Earth Policy did you mean Scorched Earth Policy?

  137. Ted Mead

    April 17, 2017 at 11:22 am

    #125 Great Video

    Just goes to prove how imperative mycelium fungi is to the earth’s structure and function.

    Funny how the ignorant FT advocates and trolls don’t even recognise its existence, At least they are consistently blind!

  138. Russell

    April 17, 2017 at 11:37 am

    Re #130
    Still haven’t read it properly?

    Take a Bex and have a good lie down.

  139. Russell

    April 17, 2017 at 11:39 am

    Re #130
    Actually, your “relocated mainlanders” are the main reason why Tassie is crawling out of bankruptcy.

  140. TGC

    April 17, 2017 at 6:50 pm

    #139 Now there’s a classic exaggeration. – and especially since elsewhere the contributor #139 has asserted Tasmania is ‘bankrupt’

  141. Barney Rubble

    April 17, 2017 at 9:51 pm

    #131, never said anything of the sort nor do I advocate further destruction of native forests. Still there are thousands of hectares of maturing plantation timber that most will be chipped and sent offshore to be processed. We should be doing that here under controls we can specify. The log trucks should only be using a few kms of public road before being offloaded at Waterloo but unfortunately that was a political football doomed from the start just like the pulp mill. Blood of a deceased family from an accident with a log truck will be on the hands of those that opposed the port though.

    We have an oportunity to reduce our impacts on the planet but stumble at every hurdle but give no second thought to sending offshore for processing at a mill we know is far from ideal.

    Hawke has a fair bit to answer for with stopping the hydro expansion of the late 80’s and now diesel generated pollution is now required. We have untamed winds from the Indian Ocean that could/should be generating power and we should be selling this to the mainland. Alas we buy power from coal and gas power plants, shame shame shame…..

  142. Barney Rubble

    April 17, 2017 at 9:55 pm

    #133, fuel reduction burns pal, that’s what I am commenting on. I know some people in Koonya that lost everything they owned and have only just moved into their new home. Happy to take you down to meet them and hear the terrifying story of that day so you understand better.

    Not interested in getting into that other argument, if that’s what you want tag someone else.

  143. Barney Rubble

    April 17, 2017 at 9:57 pm

    #138, about what I expected, all noise no substance. Get back to me when you can elaborate further #timewaster

  144. Clive Stott

    April 17, 2017 at 11:59 pm

    #141: Barney you said we should have had a pulp mill here so we can put our controls on it.
    The people saw the ‘controls’ being put on it in the design stage and outright rejected it in their thousands over the campaign and will do it again if need be. It simply never had a social licence.

    Anyway you can read a bit about it here (http://cleanairtas.com/gunns-pulp-mill/gunns-pulp-mill.htm) we have bigger fish to fry.

    And that bigger fish is one burner named Robin Charles Halton who won’t spit out who his mentor was that championed the Black Earth Policy? Won’t even clarify #136 if the Scorched Earth Policy is one and the same?

    In #51 RCH said: “As one of my great fire management mentors often mentioned during our inter agency training sessions breaks over a few beers back in the 70’s before Peg Putt put a stop to Parks fuel reduction burning, ” the black earth policy” is best.
    Our mentor, one of FT’s greatest fire management CEO’s of all time was right and that still holds today and will beyond our expected life time!”

    I think these are fair questions for me to ask after submitting the main article.

    Robin, why say these things in here if you can’t/are not prepared to back them up?

  145. TGC

    April 18, 2017 at 12:28 am

    #144 “Robin, why say these things in here if you can’t/are not prepared to back them up?”
    Perhaps ‘he’s’ a long-wined troll?

  146. MJF

    April 18, 2017 at 12:33 am

    Last time I looked (today) there’s still a log truck thundering along every two minutes with a full load of logs. Certainly not going to any pulp mill but heading to any one of three current East Tamar woodchip mills, numerous sawmills, log export yards or two Burnie wood chip facilities.

    No pulp mill doesn’t appear to have led to any decrease in log cartage and subsequent road impacts.

    In fact I’ve never seen more log trucks than what are currently on the roads.

    But, of course, something has to be done with all that wood we were advised didn’t exist when a proposed pulp mill was looking for feedstock.

    All this wood we now see aboard thundering log trucks that didn’t actually grow as all the MIS plantations are failures. Virtual reality wood. Go figure that.

    Worse still to come, all the recently acquired New Forests and RMS planted land is being mass harvested and replanted, more wood which won’t grow in the future I can only presume.

    Alas I digress so back to the relevant points.

    After a brief time and motion study and not withstanding my last statement, I would suggest the additional non stop barrage of containerised and various bulk tipper truck movements might actually outnumber log haulage prime movers at least on Tasmanian highways.

    Might have just been that cursed smoke getting in my eyes too, of course. Many thanks to The Platters

    Pete, please explain the concept of “the deliberate destruction of wet forests and the burning of what is deemed waste in an attempt to convert the wet forest into dry fire prone forest”

    I’m overlooking your use of the terms “deliberate destruction” and “deemed waste” as the same old rhetoric blah blah blah that nobody takes seriously anyway.

    What I am interested in however is learning about this conversion from wet to dry forest that man can apparently carry out at on a whim when required.

    As far as I know wet, damp or dry forest is determined by site criteria such as geography, immediate climate and most importantly aspect. You know, the old maxims of north facing slopes being dry and south facing slopes being wet, for example.

    The site attributes then influence and determine the naturally occurring tree, scrub and ground cover species based on moisture availability and micro climate.

    Even E nitens previously planted on ex wet forest sites still regrows wet forest understorey scrub species. These scrub and ground cover species will further grow, develop and naturally diversify if harvest is excluded for long enough. Fact – manferns can and do regenerate in plantations (as an example)

    Ignoring the miniscule influence of climate change, you can log this wood every 15 years but the same amount of rain is still going to fall on the site and you’re still going to have the same amount of shade year in, year out. The available soil doesn’t materially change.

    So how are you going to change wet forest to fire prone dry forest by harvesting, burning and reseeding ?

    You’re not the only that promulgates this myth, it appears to have some kind of support base, so how about it ?

  147. Barney Rubble

    April 18, 2017 at 11:03 am

    #144, Clive, unfortunately we never got to see these controls as the pulp mill was Killed off before it could begin by the green minority who would never accept a mill of any kind in the state.

    Now let’s hypothesize for a moment and pretend not me more tree gets cut down in this state for harvesting purposes, where des our paper come from? What controls do we as Tasmanians and Australians have over the pollution created from manufacturing the product we consume?

    We are recourse hungry in this state, create waste and yet we object to every measure of creating a less burdensome processing plant and are oblivious of the pollution because we didn’t see it nor did we allow it in our backyard. The Great Barrier Reef will be gone inside this century and not due to what Queenslanders are doing nearby but what we as Tasmanians and the rest of the world are dong to the planet.

  148. Ted Mead

    April 18, 2017 at 11:04 am

    #145 – Waffle and lame-braining has hit an all time low on TT when one troll suggests another troll is trolling !!!!!!!!!

  149. Ted Mead

    April 18, 2017 at 12:07 pm

    #146 – Your comments have to be the most desperate, inaccurate and brainwashed garbage I’ve read here for a while!!

    High rainfalls areas that once had rainforest which are now plantation conversions aren’t growing a diversity of rainforest understorey. At the best you might find tree ferns under some, particularly in radiata areas.

    I suggest you go out to the VDL region for a walk with this in hand – Rainforest in Tasmania / S.J. Jarman, M.J. Brown and G. Kantvilas. – You probably discover a new rainforest type, which you can call the FT paucity ignoramus community. Feel free to put your tenuous name to that study and paper.

    Most nitens plantations that were growing where rainforest once was have little wet forest diversity beneath them apart from where the bulldozed windrows are. A lot of the top-soil got moved around, dried out or compacted.

    Every time you clear a wet forest it exposes more air and sun into a region. It may recover in a century proving the entire valley isn’t trashed but as soon as it begins to restore itself FT aims to move in trash it once more!

  150. Ted Mead

    April 18, 2017 at 12:16 pm

    # 147 – Pure speculation on personal politics.

    Whilst I’m not for plantations and pulp mills. I,like many Tasmanians, would have settled for a closed-loop, non chlorine-bleaching Pulp mill away from the Tamar Valley.

    Such a proposal was floated to Gunns but fortunately in their arrogance they imploded by pursuing their all or nothing agenda.

  151. TGC

    April 18, 2017 at 12:54 pm

    #148 Good- But needed more exclamation marks.

  152. Jack Lumber

    April 18, 2017 at 8:33 pm

    re 150 re your suggested reference book
    Rainforest in Tasmania / S.J. Jarman, M.J. Brown and G. Kantvilas.

    Can you advise who these authors where employed by when they published this excellent work and in your opinion does this diminish in any way the work that they had done?

    Sorry haven’t been more active as been Easter and all that and also stacking firewood as ’tis the season to be ready …. pretty sure not missed and my firewood stack is tall and true and not from any forest communities that have changed as a result of man made fires .

    Nitens on ex rainforest ??? …. Ted now who is blowing smoke??

  153. Pete Godfrey

    April 18, 2017 at 9:40 pm

    #147 Barney, first the pulp mill did not get stopped by a Green minority. It was stopped because of bad business practices, eg. Not listening to the customers when they wanted FT and Gunns to get FSC certification.
    It also got stopped because the paper companies in Japan went elswhere to get pulp as they could see that if Gunns built their mill the supply of woodchips to Japan would have dried up.
    As far as hazard reduction burns go, if they are carried out in Autumn then it is the wrong time of year. To protect settlements in Summer from wildfire the burns should be in spring, as late as possible to take into account the spring growth.
    I am sad when I hear of people losing their houses, being a person who has fought fires to save houses, I do not like hearing of any being lost. Unfortunately it is a fact of life for those of us ( me included) who choose to live in areas surrounded by bushland. We love the bush around us and have to accept that we may get burnt out. Advocating a scorched earth policy as Robin does would not suit me or many others who want to live close to the bush. Life has risks and some of us choose to take them.
    #146 MJF, I would have thought that you would recognise that what happens in the Tarkine area is an attempt at conversion. When a wet forest, consisting of mainly rainforest with an overstory of senescent eucalypts is clearfelled and burnt, then re seeded with eucalypts very thickly. Not much of the rainforest comes back. The soil over in the Frankland river area in particular is very poor, lots of rain, slow growing trees. But if you sow eucalypt seeds only they tend to crowd out the rainforest. The forests there are in the process of returning to Rainforests, CBS treatment is an attempt to prevent this.
    Many years ago, I heard an FT forester interviewed on the radio, when asked what would happen if they did not burn the waste, his response was “the rainforest would take over”.
    He seemed appalled at that idea.

  154. Clive Stott

    April 18, 2017 at 10:24 pm

    #147 The pulp mill Barney Rubble, was not killed off by the Green minority at all.
    People of all political persuasions knew something stunk big time with the approval process.
    It was a bad thing. Don’t underestimate people power at play.
    Honesty you weren’t one of the few in favour of the pulp mill were you? Let me shake your hand sometime there are not many of you about.

    You keep speaking about controls…well do you think if this proposed appauling mill had been built and it had breached air quality guideline for example, which it would have, do you think controls would have worked to shut it down until it complied? Rubbish because as I have said t was never assessed for PM2.5 which are in now.

    The federal government was, in my opinion, stalling with making PM2.5 a full standard while there was a chance the poorly assessed pulp mill had a chance. Our environment ministers had a vote on these standards…which way do you think our Tasmanian Environment minister would have voted, (seeing he was part of state government in power that was championing a pulp mill). Pulp mill or no pulp mill? Pm 2.5 full standard or Pm2.5 just advisory standard?

    You are right we sure create waste and burn it in our forests for one thing .
    Have a look at the photos in the main article. We aren’t oblivious at all to the pollution. It is so obvious how could you miss it?
    I could show you many photos from just this week were the pollution from fuel reduction burns shrouded the north of the state…for what result?

    I’m with you, I think it is disgusting what Tasmania is doing to the planet with all the emissions from all this burning. You cannot put pollution into different boxes, just because you think up different terminology for burning.
    Unfortunately it is on our back door and it is disgusting and extremely harmful.

  155. Barney Rubble

    April 18, 2017 at 11:10 pm

    #154, I will be the first to admit the Tamar was not the place for it but it needed to be built in our state where we can have some control over its emissions. What controls do we have now on a foreign mill? Would you like to think those photos of Launceston only exist due to a dirty mill making our paper? It’s atrocious that we can stop something like the pulp mill and just send our chips elsewhere and ignore the pollution it caused.

    I don’t underestimate people power as I have seen people petition against mobile phone towers near there home but then allow them to be built near schools and shopping centres. People power indeed halted the pulp mill but the greens started the ball rolling and stood aside. We even had an author bleat about its pollution, an author who became very wealthy from paper, paper from a dirty pulp mill somewhere else.

  156. Barney Rubble

    April 18, 2017 at 11:13 pm

    #138, Russell, still waiting for you to tell me more about the measures you are taking in bio diesel and to hear about the magic trees you burn different to everyone else……. tick tock tic tock. #timewaster

  157. Clive Stott

    April 18, 2017 at 11:13 pm

    #146 Yeah MJF, where are all these magical logs coming from?

    Just imagine, what is going on now would have continued in addition to a pulp mill so that means there would have been a log truck thundering past every minute! Whoopee do.

    #150 Ted? Considering this, where would the feed stock have come from for the traded off/ alternative mill you mention?
    The native forests won’t replenish as quickly as the dams that were sucked dry to cavitation level.
    Forest cavitation now there is a horrible thought;-)

  158. TGC

    April 19, 2017 at 12:44 am

    #154 “I think it is disgusting what Tasmania is doing to the planet”
    Now’s the time for #154 to move to South Australia which has initiated environmental practices which have succeeded in abolishing global warming in that State and resulted in SA having the purest, cleanest,greenest air in all the world.
    But lots of power blackouts.
    Oh, and #154 should send this piece of ‘porn’ to the many mainland and international tourist leaders so that they can strike Tasmania off their destinations list.
    A great servant of Tasmania #154.

  159. Claire Gilmour

    April 19, 2017 at 1:15 am

    #152 Jack Lumber. Well FT blew lotsa fire/smoke yesterday in what use to be wet and rainforest species in Far N/W Tassie. The usual huge mushroom cloud … like an atomic bomb going off.

    One wonders if FT were actually really utilising so much timber from state forests, WHY is there so much timber left over to create such fire bombs?

    IF FT and Gov keep getting their way there will be little rainforest species left to perpetuate rainforests. The state will just become more fire prone with the euc species they keep seeding/planting.

    Barney Rubble indeed! … ha ha ha

    Get your own bedrock before taking my Pebbles Flintstone as a nemesis!!!

    Let’s recall Barney Rubble was pretty damn stupid and just toed the line … pulp mill indeed etc etc.

    This Barney Rubble is either someone I have personally conversed with under my name as Pebbles Flintstone, or a friend of a friend, or is someone in the government I have recently written too under same email address title.

    Koonya he laments, right next to Nubeena and Premaydena … well how about that! right where I been working!!!

    Let’s recall the only smart one who eventually took the bedrock to task was Pebbles!


  160. Robin Charles Halton

    April 19, 2017 at 1:58 am

    #144 Clive, Its irrelevant now who said what
    when and why, the SFMC have since taken up the famous cause to ensure the continuation of the practice pursuing the gilded path of wildfire prevention.

    #147 Barney avoid #153 Pete Godfrey’s advice is unforgiving, fuel reduction can be carried out in either Spring or Autumn.

    As a rule of thumb it is best to reduce lighter fuels buttongrass plains and light scrub and dry forest eucalypt litter when the SDI’s are rising but below 50 when fires dont burn overnight.
    With SDI’s approaching 50 best to obtain a long range weather forecast first to ensure cancel burn if strong winds are due within following few days without sufficient numbers to mop up edges progressively working inside the preimeter immediately after the burn.

    As autumn approaches with the trend of falling SDI’s is the time for reducing heavier fuels, FT carry out their annual and absolutely essential regen. burns (#149 Ted take note) and later closer to winter farmers can burn their windrows of logs which can smolder for months if not pushed up by machine regularly otherwise if unattended can smolder underground over winter and suddenly break out during an early event of warm spring weather and create havoc unless sufficient clearing (ploughed ground) has not been an inclusive part of in the farmers burn plan.

  161. Richard Kopf

    April 19, 2017 at 5:29 am

    A simple sort of cost/benefit analysis is needed. Lives and property lost through bush fires versus lives and property lost caused by forestry burns.
    I feel that the latter is more harmful.

  162. Clive Stott

    April 19, 2017 at 12:16 pm

    Robin Halton your credibility is shot to ruins.
    Still waiting for you to answer #144

    #158 The tourists are seeing it for themselves, check out Lola Moth’s comment up the page and talk to a few of them.

    #155 Barney when there aren’t any more fish and chips, what then?

  163. Stu

    April 19, 2017 at 1:25 pm

    RE #161 Perhaps the most ridiculous comment ever posted on TT, pretty much sums up the pathetic comments from most who have no idea of reality and post unsubstantiated crap!

  164. max

    April 19, 2017 at 5:46 pm

    RE 163. Stu. I am sitting in my lounge looking out at a smoke filled valley, more smoke than I ever saw in a smoke filled pub before the danger of smoke was recognised. Then I read your unsubstantiated crap.
    The World Health Authority has recognised the danger of wood smoke and the deaths it causes. Substantiate your little rant by informing us, (the pathetic concerned people) Just how many people die each year from smoke related illness and how many from bushfires. Just Tasmania will do, or you can go world wide if you prefer.

  165. Jack Lumber

    April 19, 2017 at 6:49 pm

    re 161 what you are suggesting is what happens regularly in respect to many policy matters and public interest ie affordable safety in air travel or any matter that involves an actuary ?

    Where you “let yourself down was you comment about how you feel ? That is a different question and not relevant if you wish to have such an objective analysis

  166. MJf

    April 20, 2017 at 5:17 am

    Thanks for nothing #149 & #153
    I love the observation ” a lot of top soil got moved around, dried out or compacted” ???? Your inane comments Ted clearly demonstrate yet again you have no concept or understanding of forest ecology notwithstanding your own inflated opinion (for some reason)

    Sadly neither of you gentleman can explain this claimed phenomenon of changing wet forest to dry forest
    Re plantation, if you plant a nitens on a wet site they grow well, very similar to their natural distribution in Victorian wet scleroohyll forest. If you plant a nitens in an ex dry forest site they won’t grow as seen by failed MIS areas.

    Re CBS, the silviculture doesn’t dry out a regenerating forest. You might not endorse the species proportions but attempting to introduce a drier species into a wetter site will fail.
    Changing wet forest to dry forest is about as likely as changing dry forest to a wet bush. It can’t be done lads.

    Can we put this silliness to bed please ?

    I eagerly await the next conspiracy ………….

    No it wouldn’t Clive. Are you and ted the same person, you both make as much sense as each other at times? Whoopee do to you too, did you enjoy The Platters number? I remember you once claimed not long ago that logging was going on too close to streams and rivers, but you chose not to respond how close was too close when I asked.

    I velieve you were out of your depth on that one Clive/ted.

    I am interested in the mechanical mulching of forest residues however as advocated by your organisation. If costs could be rationalised it would be a fantastic outcome. How to progress ?

  167. Clive Stott

    April 20, 2017 at 5:40 am

    Well said Richard in #161.

    Stu, now let’s see…any pecuniary interests to declare?

    No Robin it is not irrelevant at all, we have a failed health system and you are advocating to further harm people’s health with your overcooked burning practices that achieve what? Toxic smoke.

    You don’t get out of it that easily my friend in #160, when again today we were smoked out as a result of what you say.
    You have claimed yourself to be an expert. If you cannot back up what you said, then nothing you say is credible, full stop!

    So here they are again two simple questions:
    In #51 you said: “As one of my great fire management mentors often mentioned during our inter agency training sessions breaks over a few beers back in the 70’s before Peg Putt put a stop to Parks fuel reduction burning, ” the black earth policy” is best.
    Our mentor, one of FT’s greatest fire management CEO’s of all time was right and that still holds today and will beyond our expected life time!”
    Who said this?

    And I am asking you if the Scorched Earth Policy is one and the same?

    #164: Max this is the smoke you were living in yesterday. This is the smoke we were living in yesterday.

  168. John Maddock

    April 20, 2017 at 1:22 pm

    MJf #166 writes:”Re CBS, the silviculture doesn’t dry out a regenerating forest. ”

    I think you might be gilding the lily (or maybe the tree!) just a tad here.

    Hydrological studies of plantations (and don’t ask me to quote the refs- I don’t have the time to search) clearly show that the young, growing trees suck enormous amounts of water out of the soil. It takes some decades before soil water yields are back to pre CBS days – ignoring climate change.

    Granted, a regenerated forest might not be *exactly* the same as a plantation regime, but since most of the trees would of even age, my guess is that the water yields would closely parallel those under a plantation regime.

    First, after the CBS process, runoff would be very high, and very slowly diminish until the trees reach maturity and a full understorey develops, together with a normal amount of soil humus.

    Maybe you’ll agree that soil humus can hold a significant amount of water which is released slowly – or maybe, as RCH appears to, you would reject that proposition.

    Whatever, as I see it, your claim that CBS silviculture does not dry out forests is not justifiable.


  169. Robin Charles Halton

    April 20, 2017 at 3:07 pm

    With a cooler and weather forecast due for the State during the weekend onwards TODAY would be the greatest opportunity to exercise extensive burning activities before the expected weather change!

    Well it seems that Clive is happy with his “Scorched earth mantra, no doubt the term has given him a new lease of life as for something more to complain about!

    Oh Clive a massive inversion layer is due over Upper Tamar Valley during the weekend with smoke trapped for days on end!

    Nice and sunny at North Hobart today, the mountain is clear some smoke haze over the Meehan Range that indicates there is some useful burning activity taking place in the best part of Tasmania, the Southern region.

  170. Clive Stott

    April 20, 2017 at 3:43 pm

    #166: MJF Yes I enjoyed the Platters thanks.
    Reminded me of The Great Pretender RCH.
    A picture is worth a thousand words they say so you must agree this deliberate forestry smoke doesn’t just get in your eyes, it gets in your lungs and blood stream as well.

    All these log trucks you acknowledge going on at record levels at present. Wow imagine a pulp mill on top of that.

    If I am Ted then you are Prince Charles?
    Ted speaks a lot of sense based on science. Similarly so does Pete Godfrey. Plus they both have years of personal experience they can draw on.
    I wouldn’t be too quick to knock them.

    As far as burning too close to rivers and streams, gosh there has been a lot of polluted water under the bridge since then.
    The travel distance of PM2.5’s (smoke)is a hundred to a thousand kilometers. Of course all the burns would be outside that?

    I appreciate your last comment re alternatives to burning. The benefits need to be put out there for people to see. Letters need to be written, politicians contacted.

    The Federal Gov’t is aware of the benefits hence the money being given for a trail.
    However, people need to be on top of this trial to make sure it comes up with true and honest findings.
    It is being coordinated by forestry agencies around Australia and the Australian Forest Products Association…but is not being undertaken anywhere in Tasmania

  171. Ted Mead

    April 20, 2017 at 3:59 pm

    #166 – Hah, what a laugh – you have got to be joking!
    No soil disturbance through clearfell processes hey?
    Your Masters must be seething when you write such fallacies.

    Maybe they will take you beyond your insular work cubicle and send you out into the real world where forests get trashed daily by heavy machinery pounding the landscape, plundering rainforest, silting the streams, and annihilating every bit of earth sub-structure before burning and aerating every thing leaving nothing but pure devastation in their wake.

    Seems like I need to write and article on this one to rebut more FT nonsense re – Hiroshima style impacts on soil. And when I do I’ll make sure the FSC gets a fair look at it as well.

    Take a good look at some of these images in one of my previous articles!

    World’s Best Practice.

  172. Ted Mead

    April 20, 2017 at 4:05 pm


    Now Robin you really are showing that your senses are failing you big time. Can’t see, smell or taste anything anymore?

    Where were you yesterday when all the smoke was lingering around Hobart. The air quality in lower Sandy Bay/ Taroona was absolute crap last night.

    One (imagines) you were sucking it up also.

  173. Polluted

    April 20, 2017 at 5:07 pm

    Currently choking in the Huon Valley, it is stinging my eyes and airways. I also feel a sensation of pressure in my head.
    Can’t believe they can do this legally. Third World stuff.
    Time to set up a class action.

  174. Claire Gilmour

    April 20, 2017 at 5:09 pm

    #161 What about lives and property lost due to FT/gov clearfelling, planting wrong species adjacent to natural areas where creeks and forests have been dried out?

    It’s a two – fold thing … one hand washes or in this case destroys the other.

    #166 MJF. You don’t know what you’re talking about. You obviously have no real time experience.

    You ask … How close do they log to stream beds? … Right in them baby! The machinery is allowed to pick the trees out!!! Then burn it!!

    Smokey bear comes from wet/rainforests destroyed.

    We’ve just had the best Autumn … clear beautiful windless days, no rain … our tourism should extend to march/april.

    But Forestry and the government always has burning plans! … To show case just how dinosauric the state is !

    It’s akin to dredging/destroying the coral seabeds of Qld … destroying vast amounts to end up only protecting/having very small pockets of natures finest does not enhance let alone grow natures finest.

    It’s like only feeding/protecting your child when it’s convenient and expecting it to still grow and thrive.

    Nature is the master. It will spurn, burn you if you don’t respect it.

    And let’s face it … FT, Parks – the state government get federal funds to keep burning … all the while they want Chinese tourists and investors … which is like offering 3 fingers on two hands …

  175. Mark Poynter

    April 20, 2017 at 9:32 pm

    #161 Richard Kopf

    While your suggested comparison is spurious, there has been past research on the cost:benefit of expenditure on fire prevention, such as fuel reduction burning.

    In the late 1990s, a study by the University of Melbourne, found that every $1 spent on cool season fuel reduction burning averted a cost of $24 in property loss and fire-fighting expenditure that would otherwise have been incurred by summer bushfires.

    As I understand it in Canada, the $ benefit is greater. Right now in Australia, the magnitude of the benefit of fuel reduction burning is being re-examined given that the routine widespread use of water bombing aircraft has massively increased bushfire control costs over the past 20-years. Accordingly, the benefit in averted costs for each $1 spent on fuel reduction burning should be much greater.

    In the overall emergency management sphere, the Insurance Council of Australia recognises the benefit of prevention expenditure, and made this comment in its submission to a recent Senate Inquiry:

    “The pattern where 97 per cent of government disaster funding is expended after an event ignores the overwhelming evidence of the massive economic benefit of funding prevention where $1 spent on prevention can save up to $10 on recovery.”

    As per above, this substantially understates the benefit in relation to bushfires.

  176. TGC

    April 21, 2017 at 12:08 am

    #174 A million visitors a year- just exactly what are we doing wrong?

  177. Clive Stott

    April 21, 2017 at 5:04 am

    #175 Mark Poynter

    The Insurance Council quote you provide mentions prevention expenditure, it does not link this expenditure solely to fuel reduction burning.

    At the very beginning of your comment you say, ‘past research on cost benefit of expenditure on fire prevention, SUCH AS FUEL REDUCTION BURNING’; not just fuel reduction burning.

    Again where you mention percentage of disaster funding….benefit of funding prevention, it does not follow that prevention is purely linked to fuel reduction BURNING.

    I cannot see where any of your costings include health expenses as a result of the burning, or where there has been a decrease or savings in health costs by using other methods of fuel reduction….other than burning.

    Further, I find it disappointing you only mention property loss and the figures you provide vary widely form 1 in 10 to 1 in 20.

  178. Robin Charles Halton

    April 21, 2017 at 1:56 pm

    #177, Bad luck Clive, “scorched earth policy” works well being dollar effective when assessed against the cost of wildfires as Mark #175 has carefully explained.

    Leaving you to wallow for yuor term of self imprisonment at Grindelwald.

    It will much of the same next year, traditional burning practices will continue.

  179. Mark Poynter

    April 21, 2017 at 2:07 pm

    #177 Clive Stott

    I am merely reporting the findings of someone else’s studies == you seem intent on shooting them down without even considering them, which is why it is rather pointless engaging with the ‘group think’ evident on this site.

    As I understand it, the studies were about fuel reduction burning only. That’s not to say that there aren’t other fuel reduction methods, and in fact mulching is being trialled in Victoria at the moment. However, it is more costly than burning and has practical limitations on how much area and what type of area (ie. slopes etc) that it can operate in.

    Many government bushfire inquiries over the past decades have acknowledged the need (on the mainland) to fuel reduce hundreds of thousands of hectares of country each year — how many mulchers would be needed to do that?, what are the logistics of getting them into and safely operating in remote locations?, can they even operate in country that has any more than a gentle slope, and a relatively open and low fuel load? These are all practical questions that seem to be simply ignored by people such as yourself that appear to be barracking for it as a replacement for cool season burning.

    The answers are pretty obvious to anyone who has been involved in fire management, and that is why mulching is seen as a useful tool that is likely to be limited to narrow strips of flattish ground adjoining towns or other human assets. This is still extremely useful because such areas are the riskiest to burn, but it doesn’t replace the need to still conduct large areas of burning each year.

    You will note the above discussion is referring only to fuel reduction burning, not slash burns conducted on harvested coupes to provide suitable conditions for regeneration. That is a separate issue which seems to be a major pre-occupation amongst the ‘TT group think’ which is almost universally opposed to Tasmania having a native hardwood timber industry. Unsurprisingly, smoke and human health is another weapon in that fight.

  180. max

    April 22, 2017 at 12:05 am

    # 179 Mulchers, what are the logistics of getting them into and safely operating in remote locations?, can they even operate in country that has any more than a gentle slope, and a relatively open and low fuel load?
    There doesn’t seem as if there is any problem in creating the mess. All I can say is, if you can’t clean up your own crap in a safe and healthy way. don’t create the crap.
    Just a simple question, if the governments clamps down on the present stone age method of fire to cleaning up, will the forest industry fold or change their present dangerous actions.

  181. Clive Stott

    April 22, 2017 at 6:23 am

    #179 Mark Poynter

    Smoke and human health (and it is not just human health) is a major weapon in the fight for clean air because this deliberately caused wood smoke is carcinogenic; Group1 in fact, the highest.
    Surely you can’t argue with the World Health Organisation but just in case I will refer you to what they say at the beginning of the main article.
    If you were deliberately exposed to the other group1 carcinogens you would rightly go bananas. Why then do you try and exempt yourself from the WHO’s findings and just say suck up our Particulate Matter?
    This smoke (PM2.5s) is not just a small leak either is it? It is almost on a state-wide basis when you release it onto the population.

    That is the cancer causing side of it, now what about those with lung disease such as asthma or COPD? This susceptible group can suffer from the first breath of your stinking smoke each and every time they are exposed to it. They can suffer for the rest of their shortened lives. COPD attacks are cumulative.

    Then we have those who suffer from cardiac disease. Studies show smoke causes heart attacks by thickening the blood, causing inflammation, causing Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT’s) and Pulmonary Emboli (PE’s).

    Newborns, the young, the elderly and those with these pre-existing diseases are susceptible to your smoke. It is a major section of our population that are made ill by your selfish desire to burn.

    You can’t put wood smoke into different categories. Whether it comes from slash, fuel reduction, or regeneration burns the fallout is the same, toxic smoke. It goes deep into the lungs and stops there. The toxic aerosols can cross over into the blood stream causing what seem to be at first unrelated health problems. Some of these can be found on the cleanairtas.com website. It won’t be complete because new studies into particle pollution causing health problems are being discovered regularly.

    You talk about mulching being costly but you are not weighing up the saved medical costs and the benefits of people being able to breathe. We can put a price on this too you know.
    You talk about the number of mulching machines but you don’t talk about the number of burners running around with matches and drip torches and fighting breached containment lines.
    According to Senator Colbeck mechanical fuel reduction is widely used in the US and Canada and apart from reducing smoke there are other benefits…all of which a monetary figure can be put on so don’t kid ourselves. http://cleanairtas.com/departments/investing-in-bushfire-prevention-strategies.pdf


  182. Clive Stott

    April 22, 2017 at 6:25 am


    Cool season burning produces the most smoke! There you go again trying to fit it into another box.
    I don’t agree we have to burn large areas. There are smokeless alternatives, have a look at http://cleanairtas.com/departments/alternative-solutions.htm

    Tasmania has pretty much the worst of everything when it comes to Australian wide health and hospital figures.
    We have had a fairly stable population so obviously we aren’t doing things right. And, we have been making deliberate smoke for over 50 years haven’t we?
    Tasmania is a designated smoking area!

  183. TGC

    April 22, 2017 at 12:51 pm

    #182 “We have had a fairly stable population so obviously we aren’t doing things right”.
    The contributor is concentrating on the ‘problems’ caused by ‘smoke’ (fumes?) and may be linking that to a perceived poor health system- even though “we have had a fairly stable population…”
    But what hasn’t been stable has been the phenomenal broadening of ways and means of bringing health-care- medicines, surgical procedures, hi-tech medicine/health care- the ascending costs of which have to be met by that same “stable population”
    Let’s separate an environmental issue- ‘burning-off’! from the broader matter of ‘how do we pay this increasing health-care bill?’

  184. William Boeder

    April 22, 2017 at 5:49 pm

    #175. So Mark Poynter I see you have again found the time to deliver to the TT forum more of your deliberately misleading percentages that never deliver a true mass or volume with any degree of accuracy.
    I recall having spoken of this bad habit of yours on a prior occasion, perhaps you might now tell us truly how many ‘Hectares’ of the Native Mountain-ash species remain in the Victorian Highlands?
    (Remember now no more of your beguiling jiggery pokery percentages Mark, for they are bereft of accurate determination.)
    When the opinions of authors such as yourself that arise from within the cluster of the usual misleading others that form your tree clear-felling guild, or be it your “The The Institute of Foresters of Australia (IFA) is Australia’s only professional body for foresters and other forestry professionals” which is a false claim in itself as this descriptive of yourselves lacks any international accreditation within itself that has your institute claiming you lot know it all about logging, then about each and every other non-World-wide endorsed carriage of forest management activity in Australia.
    This comment of yours continues its hyperbole when you proffer your erroneous endorsement, how can you continue to assert so many of your detrimental to the environment practices as being the most professional methods to follow?
    (The expression of ‘The The’ error is contained in the internet opening descriptive of your deluding institute.)
    Then you insert yourself into Tasmanian Times as a spokesperson of impeccable character as the acting authority representative of this over-rated institute, which by your written comment herein suggests your Institute is claiming itself to be a fully aware fire-danger authority, which is incorrect.
    Such an enviromental harming regimen of burning mega volumes of Tasmania’s forest flora does not permit any cause for rebuttal, whereby the resulutant wood-smoke is indeed created by the lunatic burning series of actions all the while delivering its industry created poisonous wood-smoke that drives its harms into the breathing atmospheres of Tasmania.
    Therefore Mark Poynter you should give full credit to the science created facts that Clive Stott so constantly presents in his comments, then that you not continue along maintaining your Institute created myths as you have been aided by such luminaries as those former Forestry Tasmania head honchos now in your institute midst (being those same persons no longer accepted nor permitted to hold their high logging industry office, being due to their non-credible espoused claims and statements forever previously delivered into the minds of Tasmania’s public.)

    That you relentlessly push your unqualified claims as are often mistakenly published in such a manner that they do not provide any true scientific basis, also that these mythical deluding claims by you and your institute colleagues are indeed the very opposite to established scientific fact.
    I believe you owe an apology to the people who view your writings as they suggest that you know it all when in fact you don’t.

  185. Clive Stott

    April 22, 2017 at 7:57 pm

    #183 ‘how do we pay this increasing health-care bill?’

    Simple, stop making people sick.

  186. Clive Stott

    April 22, 2017 at 8:54 pm

    Mark Poynter

    Going back to your comment #179 you announce re the mulching trials in Victoria, “…it is more costly than burning and has practical limitations on how much area and what type of area (ie. slopes etc) that it can operate in.”

    So here in the pages of TasTimes you are releasing the findings of the trial …before it has concluded?
    Well now, if this is the case i take it you have the authority to do so or have you spoken out of line?

    Following on from William Border’s comment #184 I take it some members in your Institute will not be impressed with you over this matter if you have. And if they are the professional institute you would have us believe, then you should/could expect a sharp wrap over the knuckles.

    Finally, does this ‘professional’ institute you belong to subscribe to its members releasing known Group 1 carcinogens into the air for the population to inhale?

  187. TGC

    April 23, 2017 at 12:00 am

    #185 It’s not just a case of treating ‘sick’ people:there is an increasing demand from ‘people’ that they be kept ‘well’

  188. Barney Rubble

    April 24, 2017 at 1:06 pm

    @Clive Stott, is it not hypocritical to argue so hard against pollution if you also indirectly contribute to pollution? Like it or not the timber industry is a big part of this states economy. The indirect employment from this industry provides tax revenue required to keep this state treading water. We can’t survive on tourism alone. Burns are needed to allow forests to regenerate, surely you realise that.

    I drive a car and burn wood for heat. I also live in a timber framed house, use paper products, use chemicals to clean the loo, wheel out my bin to the street every week etc. I own up to playing a part in pollution and it saddens me no end. I don’t however criticise everyone else who dare comment on this subject. Maybe you Clive should think for a moment before making comments like you did in #185, “stop making people sick”. Well Clive how do you suggest this should happen?

    We all damage the environment everyday but very few realise or own up to the damage they do to this planet. Such a shame.

  189. William Boeder

    April 24, 2017 at 8:57 pm

    #188. Barney Rubble, you speak as though Tasmania must continue to clear-fell its native forests for the purpose of wood-chips, as around 2 thirds of the trees in every coupe are considered trash and always has been by the Forestry Tasmania chiefs, say over the past say 20 plus years.
    Then that the major loss-making component of this train-wreck GBE is to rampantly clear-fell and deliver a gifted native log supply to the highly-profitable, 457-employee-loving, multi-concession-receiving, send-the-profits-immediately-back-to Hamed Sepawi’s Bank account, the-opportunistic-grossly-unloved-predator-outfit, non-Tasmanian-owned, Ta Ann wood-mill operations.
    By the way Barney, that rounds out to 2 out of every 3 hectares per logging coupe or coop that goes to the chippers.
    Pardon me Barney with regard to these trees they are not in any sense of the word ‘residues.’
    The fact is the honest described ‘residue’ is routinely pushed up and burnt, hence the volume of health hazard smoke that roils into our atmospheres.
    This is Tasmania’s falsely endorsed “World’s Best Practice” clear bash and burn stratagem adopted here by the government in this State.
    I recall the Triabunna Wood-chip mill was constructed to convert mill waste to wood-chips, suddenly it became a major consumer of every form and specie of Tasmania’s Old Growth Forests, also the prior harvested but since restored native forests, then as per their own written rule book this included destroying all part grown Special Species Timbers that dare stand in their way.

    (Yep still goes on to this very day) accordingly you would have been a mighty strong proponent of this early began destructive insanity that kept the executive board of the former Gunns Ltd plus Johnny (the crookster) Gay being the only recipients of the richest of gravies.
    How is it that Forestry Tasmania had earlier decided to burn the vast amount of post clear-fell residues, (including all manner of mature growth trees perhaps considered as being non-preferred for wood-chips.
    Thus the mighty volume of trees/logs that had been expeditiously delivered to the Gorgon Gunns Ltd wood-chip mills for mass conversion to wood-chips?
    But back in the earlier days. Ah, no, better to burn the bastard on site, its easier.
    Despite the fact that this could have become an additional source of income, but no, easier and better it is to bludge off the taxpayer.
    (Recall the Miles Hampton era.)
    Any at all person that continues to be pro the hugely destructive practices of this State government of Tasmania (per this disgracefully under-regulated GBE) that has been especially permitted “within their statutes also within the RFA Agreement” that this insane loss-making broad scale destructive juggernaut is not required to operate in any specificity that it must produce profitable returns to the State revenues as per each of the other State GBE’s.

    Yep, all is written in black print in “these 2 quoted government endorsed rule books of the logging game in Tasmania” (as good as in bible form) that this lunatic State government GBE can mostly do what the hell it chooses without any sensibly regulated restraints.
    Speak not to me of the Forest Practices Authority, this is little more than a wet nurse supportive agent that does bugger all to halt this massive Bully-boy GBE running roughshod across the State of Tasmania.
    (What has become of the F/T illegal road-making in the Tarkine region? Is it sweet bugger all?)
    I can’t imagine this State government taking out a litigation order against one of its GBE’s, can you Barney?
    You go on to suggest that logging native forest for the benefit of others but not to the benefit of this State’s citizens, should go on hand in hand like a couple of children skipping into Tasmania’s futures.
    Methinks you have spent too much time listening to the weirdo preaching of the arrogant and insufferable Liberal spouting Guy Barnett.
    Indeed you are a stone-age relic being possessed with Dinosaur-era primeval rock-land philosophies.

    Barney a little tip, with your enthusiastic economic attributes you could successfully oppose the current Oracle of all things ‘State revenue’ that benefits himself, his colleagues and the truck-load (B-double) of his inevitable cronies come the next State election.

  190. Barney Rubble

    April 24, 2017 at 11:03 pm

    #189 William, you presume too much. I Never mentioned destruction of native forests but there does exist a resource called regrowth plantation timber. The method of regenerating this is the same as for native forests.

    What a lot time you wasted but don’t let that stop you jumping to conclusions.

  191. Clive Stott

    April 25, 2017 at 3:59 am

    #188 and Barney you work in the timber industry.

    If I was as guilty of messing up the planet as those I criticize yes it would be hypercritical of me.
    But these people that are guilty of ruining people’s health do the things you mention PLUS all their other needless burning.
    There are other suitable methods for land clearing that can be used that do not make people sick.

    You seem to have a problem connecting the scale of things with what you do and what the smoke generators do.
    Surely you driving a car and burning wood for heat, living in a timber framed house, using paper products, using chemicals to clean the loo, wheeling out your bin to the street every week, doesn’t cause the ambient air to look like the pictures in the main article?

    We can have clean air (PM2.5 readings below 5ug/m3)when we do all these things (except wood heaters at certain time).

  192. William Boeder

    April 25, 2017 at 5:29 am

    Well Barney if you think that I have no knowledge of what a clear-fell site appears once the takeable logs have since left the site, you could be mistaken, access being made available via firewood permits when I have helped others to gain their loads of firewood usually in places somewhere along the Murchison highway.
    Also got lots of photos of chemical loaded helicopters off on their flight to dump bastard chemicals all over the region, this area on the West Coast has a large population of small washaways that lead in to the perennial creeks, streams and all finally flow into the West Coast major rivers.
    Have you read the entire of the current RFA, then all the statutes of this State governments highly destructive and most wastefully taxpayer-funded GBE?

  193. Barney Rubble

    April 25, 2017 at 10:59 pm

    #191, no I don’t work in the timber industry but I put my hand up and admit I am part of the damage done to the planet, even on a small scale. As for the scale of things, well it amazes me how many think doing it on a small scale is okay. Like the old analogy of when the bucket is full every further drop spills, think about that for a moment will you.

    #192, have to admit I never read much of your war and peace response nor am I interested in reading the RFA, enjoy burning your firewood and polluting the clean air.

  194. Clive Stott

    April 27, 2017 at 5:17 am

    #193 Barney of course many people cause damage to the planet in some way or another, no arguments there, but if there was a big spill and a small spill which one would you tackle first?

    You are going to be waiting a very long time to have all the smaller spills fixed that you worry about.
    That is, if you live long enough as a result of all the deliberate larger spills that are going on.
    Check out the main article.

  195. Clive Stott

    May 3, 2017 at 3:57 am

    #56: Re Smoke and grapes.

    Here is an Advocate article I received from Canada. Word is getting around!


    There is a smoke MOU with the wine industry and obviously it means nothing.

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    December 6, 2017 at 5:41 am

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