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sydney alternative media - non-profit community independent trustworthy
Sunday, 17 June 2007
Sunday political talkies: Good humour of Dalai, journos, MPs in 'mid paradigm shift' ie transition?
Mood:  caffeinated
Topic: election Oz 2007

Author’s general introductory note (skip this if you know this regular weekly column):


This is not a well packaged story. It’s a contemporaneous traverse of the Sunday television free to air political talkies indicating the agenda of Establishment interests: Better to know ones rivals and allies  in Big Politics and Big Media.


Indeed it’s the tv version monitoring task similar to what Nelson Mandela refers to here in his book Long Walk to Freedom (1994, Abacus) written in Robben Island prison (where he was meant to die like other African resister chiefs of history in the 19C), at page 208



“..newspapers are only a shadow of reality; their information is important to a freedom fighter not because it reveals the truth, but because it discloses the biases and perceptions of both those who produce the paper and those who read it.”



Just substitute ‘Sunday tv political talkie shows’ for "newspapers" in the quote above.


For actual transcripts go to web sites quoted below except with Riley Diary on 7. And note transcripts don’t really give you the image content value.


Media backgrounder: (and see two postscripts at the end of this post)

Cheap shot of the week


Brown registers high carbon footprint p38 Sunday Telegraph 17th June 2007, (offline?)


This impertinent piece of sophistry sledging Senator Bob Brown who literally risked personal bankruptcy in the Wielangta Forest court victory Green joy at legal victory | Mercury - The Voice of Tasmania to keep directly maybe 24,000 tonnes of carbon upstanding, compared to a trivial 24 tonnes of personal carbon footprint this year.

Picture: 24 tonnes of woodchips in one log in Tasmania's 'timber' industry?

Get real Sharri Markson and the NSW Business Chamber of Commerce (read Coal and Mining Industry) - let's just imagine the number of tonnes of carbon Brown helped saved from rotting under a lake or logged in the whole South West World Heritage Franklin River and forest area of Tasmania - his share of the credit might be say 2 billion tonnes of forest carbon? Do yer think?




Nigel Wilson in The Australian comes up trumps again with an interview with Gerry Hueston, BP’s Australian President with quotes like


Hueston says the federal task group's recognition of the need for the support of low carbon technologies during the first stages of Australia's climate-change response was important.

"While emissions trading will ultimately provide the primary incentive for the deployment of low-carbon technologies, the demonstration of new technologies at scale are essential in helping to both deliver the structural reductions in Australia's emissions portfolio that will be required, and buffer the economy and Australian households from the inevitable price shocks.

"These forms of direct support will help enhance the elasticity of the energy market, as it seeks to adjust its otherwise capital-intense and long-term fixed infrastructure. The power stations of 2050 are being designed today, so direct support to encourage low-emission technology will leave the economy better placed to absorb a higher carbon price at that time."

Hueston says the low-hanging fruit of energy efficiency will be picked first.

The point is that emissions trading is not about replacing power stations but determining what new technologies could be adopted for future infrastructure.”

Hueston: we have a problem with emissions | Business | The Australian



For an oil executive that’s pretty much what SAM news blog posted late last week about the inevitability of guillotining carbon rich products from China or India just like the Ozone Depleting Substances under the Montreal Protocol.



Similarly we have in this same Weekend Australian China the biggest carbon emission problem, says BP


And for the green baiters who say this ignores social well being, consider this potentially historic human rights issue: Offline “Climate change refugees need protection, UN told” p10, Resources section Weekend Australian 16-17 June 2007.



And similarly Climate change refugees: who’s to blame? from Lawyers Weekly, and this from Doctors for the Environment Climate change and Environmental Refugees | Doctors for the ...




10 Meet the Press 8-8.30 am



Winter break – golf broadcast.


Transcript in due course www.ten.com.au/meetthepress 




7 Weekend Sunrise, 8.35-40 am Riley Diary  -


Congratulations 7 for streaming this on your website (2 week delay?)



Dalai Llama in very cold Canberra. Quite a pop star. Senator Brown of the Greens and Michael Danby of the ALP strong voice for Jewish interests in Australia both prominent in the footage.


website backup materials





Sunday 9


Depression story about lawyers, Peter Hayes death. Robert Richter on the OHS situation for lawyers under high stress pressure work.


Faris interviewed. Truth coming out about drug use in the profession. Close to home with my old father, and my determination to be a tea totaller now.


Bloody good story actually. By Adam Shand, surely related to top barrister Shand? “Great access” to barristers for story. Raises whole issue of drug testing.



Oakes interview with Shrek … err Joe Hockey on IR. Sounding grumpy, opposition like?



Hard to keep up with 2 and 9 re Oakes reference to Abbott frothing at the mouth in Hockey interview, Oakes goes feral on Govt for attacking democracy of talking to the community, and being smeared for it. It’s a pretty punchy presentation by Joe Hockey.



Throws to Ross instead of Ellen at the end, almost chuckling at the parody of the whole situation.  



Story on 21C singledom orthodoxy – mingles, offals and slobbs – charming.





Insiders 2


Gilliard looking well, composed, focused on IR. Looking fit.


Panel: Lenore Taylor, Panel Matt Price, Glen Milne (looking good lad).


Every person segment Qlders. Will be on webcast as missed it.


Jim Middleton for Paul Kelly today. Rudd strong on productivity but missed inflation point. Polling due this Super Monday.


Milne says but for $8K paid no access into Kirribili, unless a Liberal Party delegate.



Discussion on Rudd interview quality with AM’s Uhlmann. It’s a false controversy. Rudd sticks to the trend problem in depressed productivity. Lawyers point about short term improvement in the latest National Accounts. Tiny blemish amplified.


High humour on the panel. Laughing as sign of transition in their subconscious.


Home page is http://www.abc.net.au/insiders/



Postscript #1 late Sunday 17th June 07


The economics lecture of Keating on Lateline recently made reference to this article by Ross Gittins in both the Age and Sydney Morning Herald 2 weeks ago:


Let them eat cake — how the workers' pie keeps shrinking - Business


"WHEN you divide the pie of national income between the share going to wages and the share going to profits, you find the workers' share keeps shrinking and is the smallest it has been.

...If you already knew that, congratulations. You are exceedingly well informed — because that startling fact has received minimal publicity.

If the boot had been on the other foot — if it had been the profits share that was shrinking — you would never have heard the end of it. But when it is just the workers' share, economists are not all that fussed.

If we focus just on the "total compensation of employees" (which includes employers' superannuation contributions on their behalf) and "total gross operating surplus of corporations" (the main national accounts measure of profits), we find that, in 1999-2000, the share of national income going to labour was 70.3 per cent, leaving the share going to capital at 29.7 per cent. But by the December quarter of last year, the wages share had fallen to 66 per cent while the profits share had increased to 34 per cent.

That is a shift of a remarkable, unprecedented 4.3 percentage points in just 6½ years.

Let us be clear on what this means. For a start, it does not mean wages have been falling. We are talking about changes in the workers' share of the (ever-growing) pie, not the absolute size of the share.....This explains why the Government can still say that real wages continue to grow. But the fact remains that, if the wages share is falling, workers are not getting their proportional — their "fair" — share of productivity gains.

Why not? Well, because this has been going on since the start of the noughties, it is not likely to have much to do with WorkChoices.

If you break down the wages and profits shares by industry, you find three where the profits share has increased noticeably: mining, wholesale trade and finance.

Mining is no surprise — the prices they receive have gone through the roof. It is more surprising that the wages share has fallen most in the finance (mainly banking) industry. Finance industry wages have not risen nearly as fast as fees and other charges have risen.

But this is not an adequate explanation.

There remains more to this business than we have yet determined — if economists were more interested in finding out."

......and on it goes courtesy of economics champion Ross Gittins. In other words this is definitely not a government for the battler on a wage as claimed by PM Howard. As Gittins points out it's not really resolved the cause but we think quite suggestive it's a government for large shareholders and overpaid executives??

Postscript #2

By George the contest for the seat of Wentworth in East Sydney is gaining intensity, and local Mayor George Newhouse is getting way serious. We are tempted to nominate as an independent just to see if we can influence the result. Having been one of the councillors at the time who voted for the beach side parking meters to finance management of whole of Sydney tourism impacts on one LGA when Kim Anson was a dept head in the late 90ies (to become General Manager - and may still be), we can easily see where Ambitious George is coming from.

We have no doubt it's a very popular move, a real election policy in fact. Here are the swathe of Sunday press clippings in Sydney, and notice Mal Turnbull's faithful stock item - a grant to the local surf club. Trouble is they likey knew some of the victims of the Bali bombing in 2002, the govt it seems were tipped off about, as per recent ASIO leak story (reported here on SAM via The Australian).

Posted by editor at 12:24 PM NZT
Updated: Monday, 18 June 2007 9:33 AM NZT
Saturday, 16 June 2007
JI leaders arrested but what was Australia warned of BEFORE the Bali bombing in 2002?
Mood:  quizzical
Topic: legal

When the Murdoch controlled press report ASIO officers being prosecuted for leaking documentation allegedly revealing US intelligence advice about impending bombing of to quote "sin spots" in other parts of Indonesia, just before the Bali bombing in 2002, then its definitely worth another look.

We clipped the article below and duly circulated it around. The article reveals a stark allegation the US intel was passed to Australia. But then where did it come from?

We think we can assume the Indonesian Intelligence knew of it full well also.

The implications are enormous. We find this all extremely coincidental regarding the rapid action in recent days involving arrest of leading JI terrorism suspects:

Indonesia captures JI's supreme leader | The World | The Australian

Indonesia confirms arrest of JI leaders - World - brisbanetimes.com.au

Caught: the men who know all the dark secrets - World ...

since that serious, serious story of the leaked US intel was published here:

A cynic might think the Indonesian Intel fully knew where the JI leaders were parked and moved quickly to swamp this highly damaging, devastating story above revealing apparently that both Australia USA and quite likely Indonesian intel knew pretty well that the Bali 2002 bombing or similar was coming. The story clipped above and the allegation, if true, reflects extremely badly on security services and thus governments of both countries. A stain that might be mitigated by some urgent raids and arrests of the culprits, one assumes.

Is this another example of the Indonesian political "chess" we heard described over the Inquest into the Balibo 5 murdered no doubt by the ruthless Suharto regime? Thankfully Suharto is gone but maybe old habits continue regarding cover ups?

Foreign Minister Downer, and the relevant Defence Minister at the time (Robert Hill?) have some very big questions to answer about USA tip offs pre Bali 2002 bomb deaths of 88 Australians. And he is all over the story of the latest arrests to suggest he well knows it.

As helpful as these latest arrests are, our government must account for their state of knowledge prior to the Bali bombing. Especially now the Murdoch press national broadsheet did their job and published the ASIO leak story, suggesting they were tipped off before 88 Australian's were murdered.

Posted by editor at 8:24 PM NZT
Updated: Saturday, 16 June 2007 9:19 PM NZT
Chilean navy's ghostly white ship of shame on PR mission in Sydney again
Mood:  don't ask
Topic: human rights

With all the concern after 4 Corners last Monday in a programme called "Ghost Prisoners" about state sanctioned torture, and here in the press today:

Asking the painful questions | Defence | The Australian 

 it is well to remember Pinochet's neo nazi fascist coup on 11th Sept 1973 was extremely brutal and murderous also. Especially on the occassion of the visit of the "barquentine" Esmeralda to our coastline today, because it too presents as a ghost ship with a grim history. 

We didn't know about this tall ship Esmeralda's contribution as a torture/murder chamber by the Chilean Navy to consolidate the coup's more general murderous rampage (killing well over 3,000 victims). That is until we noticed this: ESMERALDA: TORTURE SHIP VISITS SYDNEY | Sydney Indymedia

Here is a past image of the ship in a previous visit to Sydney Harbour, ghostly white, which is ironic.

Picture: Esmeralda visits Sydney 1988 during our Bicentennial when Neo Nazi dictator Pinochet still ruled Chile.

This is not some old wound that should be left in the past and simply sanitised. The truth should be known. We all know about the crimes of mass murder at Port Arthur by one of our own, and now torture of Mamdouh Habib, and it is not airbrushed from Australian history. Nor should the vicious torture and deaths of over 100 at various times on the 'good' ship Esmeralda after the coup in Chile in 1973 against a twice democratically elected President Allende.

It's true a great number of Chileans do want to move on too especially in that country, and not have this sorrow like a millstone around their necks, but then there is no statute of limitations on murder either. This website report is very revealing, including a modern legal consequence for Pinochet:

Victims - Victimas  Father Michael Woodward

"The Esmeralda ship: The Chilean Navy's Torture Chamber

by Germán F. Westphal (2003)*

Thirty years ago, on September 11th 1973, general Augusto Pinochet ousted Dr. Salvador Allende's Chilean constitutional government in a bloody coup d'état. During the 17 years of his dictatorship, he coerced Chile into an empire of state terrorism, the most cruel of all forms of terrorism since it relies on the use of authority to commit its crimes. According to official information, during this period 3,197 men and women were brutally assassinated by state agents. This number includes 49 children between the ages of 2 and 16 --one of them, a 13 year-old boy found with 11 bullet impacts on the body and 9 impacts on the head--, 126 women --some of them pregnant--, and some fifty foreign nationals.

According to the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights of the Organization of American States (Report 24/OCT/74), Amnesty International (Report AMR 22/32/80), the American Senate (Resolution 361-16/JUN/86), and the Report issued by the Chilean Truth and Reconciliation Commission (Part Three, Chapter I, Section 2 f.2.), immediately after September 11 1973, the ship Esmeralda was used by the Chilean Navy as a centre of detention and torture in the port of Valparaíso.

The testimonies to the fact that the Esmeralda was indeed used as a floating torture chamber include that of
Chilean lawyer Luis Vega, who died in exile in Israel (2001); the ex-government official of the National Institute of Agricultural Development, Claudio Correa, currently residing in the United Kingdom; and the college professor and ex-mayor of Valparaiso, Sergio Vuskovic, currently residing in Chile.

According to the report of the National Truth and Reconciliation Commission, "In the case of the ship Esmeralda, the investigations conducted by this commission established that a special unit of the navy was operational on board for the purpose of interrogating detainees who were on the ship and also those brought to her from other detention centers. As a general rule, these interrogation sessions included torture." According to the same report, the other detention centers included the cargo ships Maipo and Lebu.

Due to the fact that the detainees were being moved from one ship to another, the actual number of prisoners on board varies depending on the testimonies. However, the U.S. Senate (1986) indicates that there were 112 of them at one point. According to the evidence available, there were 40 women who were subject to all kinds of torture, rape, and other violations of their dignity and rights. Moreover, amongst the detainees there was a Chilean-British Catholic priest, Michael R. Woodward, who had to be taken to the Naval Hospital upon the recommendation of a navy doctor. Father Woodward eventually died as a consequence of the torture inflicted upon him. To this date, it has been impossible to determine where his remains were buried.
Father Woodward's assassination by the use of torture is part of Spanish Judge Baltasar Garzón's case against Augusto Pinochet for his responsibility in the crimes of genocide and international terrorism involving multiple assassinations, conspiracies to assassinate, kidnapping, torture and forced disappearances. Father Woodward' detention on the Esmeralda was first reported by the Valparaíso newspaper La Estrella in September of 1973, while all the Chilean media, including La Estrella, were under military censorship. This fact constitutes undeniable evidence of the truthfulness and accuracy of La Estrella's report regarding father Woodward's detention on the Esmeralda.

The Esmeralda's Cóndor figurehead is not only one of the the Chilean national emblems, but also reminiscent of Operation Cóndor, the international terrorist plan implemented by Augusto Pinochet and his military supporters to coordinate military repression in the countries of the Southern Cone of Latin America, Europe and the U.S. In fact, Operation Cóndor allowed them to use military intelligence services for the purpose of assassinating Chilean General Carlos Prats in Buenos Aires and President Allende's Foreign Relations Minister Orlando Letelier in Washington, D.C. Operation Cóndor was also instrumental in the assassination attempt against former Chilean Vice-President Bernardo Leighton in Rome and the death of ex-President Joao Goulart in Brazil.

The Esmeralda is not only the Chilean Navy's Torture Chamber, as it has been thoroughly documented, but also --along with the bird of prey on its bow-- a symbol of the most heinous crimes ever committed in the countries of the Southern Cone of Latin America.


The ship's annual visit to different
ports of the world should not be welcomed until the Chilean Navy overcomes its moral cowardice, acknowledges the criminal use of the ship and other detention, torture and death centres under its control,  discloses the names of the criminals involved, applies dishonourable discharge to them, and fully cooperates with the Chilean Judiciary system surrendering all relevant information and documentation.


* Germán F. Westphal is a former Chilean political prisoner and a Professor at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County, Maryland, 21250, U.S.A.


This grim history is quite different to the general PR around the visit of this ex death chamber, as for earlier today on ABC radio and here for a local charter business:


          WELCOME THE ESMERALDA TO SYDNEY - 16 JUNE - 6am to 9am
Cruise onboard the James Craig to welcome this 370' vessel to Sydney.
Cost:  $60pp


This morning we went down to the naval dockyards to see this ship and the locals of South American especially Chilean descent making their point about human rights abuses on this so called "graceful lady" of the Chilean Navy.

We noticed heavy weight local Unionist Andrew Ferguson giving his moral support but the ship was still offshore due to heavy weather so we were advised by the local security personnel:


We often refer to the criminal assasination of one Victor Jara in a sport stadium (that now is known as Victor Jara stadium in the suburb of Central Estacion in Santiago) a legendary folksinger who was every bit as significant as Bob Dylan to the tens of millions of Spanish speaking South Americans. A superb musician dangerous to the dictator for his ability to communicate to millions of poorly educated via song having lived the same peasant upbringing.

Pictures: The revered Victor Jara legendary folksinger and leader of a cultural revival in Chile under Allende also pictured, at right with son and step daughter, from Victor An Unfinished Song by his widow and British dual citizen Joan Jara.

If one is fortunate to hear Jara's dulcet tones (which seem to be growing like topsy on YouTube here also in a marvellous whimsical song) one cannot help but feel righteous anger that such a voice and genius was denied to the world by a pompous military thug in padded shoulders and gold braid. You don't really know until you actually hear. Just like say Jeff Buckley to this generation, but in Jara's case singing the song of his country's reality and crushing poverty for many.

On a wholly satirical note, in the Young Ones tv comedy of a disfunctional group house in Britain the snotty Rick Mayal character is always fantasising about being the 'People's Poet' as some kind of left wing saint. We believe the comedy writer is in fact referring to the real life Victor Jara - who was actually martyred by the Pinochet thugs. Listen to this song again and say he doesn't sound like a saint.

That's why many Chileans with some fair logic regard Pinochet as a ruthless neo Nazi as here VIctor Jara Y Violeta Parra - Documental p 1


Postscript #1 28th June 2007
The Central Intelligence Agency of the United States of America has released its dirty war files for much of this period of history. It is making big coverage in the press as regards Cuba but also some other frighteningly brutal methods of the Cold War. These same murderous tactics were also used to back Pinochet's neo Nazi coup. Here are some copies of the flavour from The Australian and Sydney Morning Herald respectively today:

Similarly SBS Dateline 27th June 2007 in this truly brilliant work  Pursuing Posada  " In the last day, the US Central Intelligence Agency has released some 700 pages of what it called "the family jewels" secret files detailing, among other things, years of attempts to assassinate the communist Cuban leader, Fidel Castro. And, Dateline can reveal the life and times of a man right at the centre of those attempts. Last month, in Texas, Luis Posada Carriles walked free from a court after US immigration charges against him were dismissed. On the face of it, a fairly unremarkable event, but below its surface is a tale of international intrigue and espionage stretching back for close on five decades. In Latin America, several governments have labelled Posada one of the world's worst terrorists, responsible, they claim, for death and destruction throughout the region. So why, you might ask, is he still free and living in the US? Dateline's David O'Shea has come up with some answers."

Posted by editor at 6:50 PM NZT
Updated: Thursday, 28 June 2007 3:47 PM NZT
Friday, 15 June 2007
Dr Jim Green's excellent No Nukes News June 2007 edition
Mood:  special
Topic: nuke threats
June 9, 2007
Hello No Nukes News subscribers,
No Nukes News is produced by Friends of the Earth and is sent to over 950 subscribers. To un/subscribe, send an email with NNN-Subscribe or NNN-Unsubscribe in the subject line to <jim.green@foe.org.au>.
In this exciting edition of No Nukes News.
* Indigenous Speaking Tour
* Cycle Against the Nuclear Cycle
* Adelaide - Brisbane - Canberra - Melbourne - Perth - Sydney
* Support the Peace Convergence - peaceful protests and many other activities in opposition to military training exercises taking place in Queensland.
* Support the Pine Gap 4 - currently on trial for their peaceful protest against the spy/military base at Pine Gap
* Support the Kokatha Mula in their struggle against mining companies near Ceduna in SA
* Have your say at SA Democrats' candidates (and former human shield in Iraq) Ruth Russell's webpage:
*  Support ICAN - the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons
* emergency appeal to help Terri  Keko'olani, community organiser with DMZ Hawai'i Aloha 'Aina, to travel to Australia to help with protests against the Talisman Saber war games
* FoE cyberaction: ALP uranium decision: it's a long way from a bad policy to a dirty mine
* Online Petition to Demand Trident Cancellation
* Support the US student hunger strike against nuclear weapons
* Dr. Mark Diesendorf debunks myths about baseload electricity
NUCLEAR NEWS ITEMS are posted on the web at: <www.geocities.com/jimgreen3/nnn9.html> in these categories:
* New information sources
* Auntie Veronica
* Uncle Kevin
* Australia as the world's nuclear dump
* ASEN launches report on universities & nukes
* Nuclear dump proposed for NT - ALP policy
* Nuclear dump proposed for NT - Muckaty
* Launch of ICAN - International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons
* Clean energy
* Transport greenhouse solutions
* Energy efficiency - building standards
* Missile defence - Coalition - ALP
* Nuclear power and climate change - joint statement by Austria, Iceland, Ireland and Norway
* Lucas Heights reactor
* Hugh Morgan pushing reactors + dump
* Institute of Public Affairs and australia's nuclear debate
* Nuclear debates - Australia -various
* Government limits scrutiny of nuclear projects
* Nuclear power for Australia
* UK body snatchers
* Nuclear waste - Sweden
* Nuclear power/weapons in the Middle East
* Nuclear accidents in Japan
* Nuclear power - economics
* Nuclear power - USA - economics / subsidies
* Missile defence - Australia / China / USA
* Veterans of British bomb tests
* Nuclear weapons - usa and china
* Uranium
* Environmental racism

Posted by editor at 10:52 PM NZT
Updated: Saturday, 16 June 2007 6:49 PM NZT
Holy hell, Melbourne Indy Media close down open publishing
Mood:  quizzical
Topic: independent media

Whoa. This is bad news for community media. Open publishing always had some whiskers on it by allowing ratbags and fruitcakes to publish unintelligible sometimes uneducated rubbish under the guise of free speech. And that's not being an education snob. There's many ways to gain wisdom and knowledge in this world and lack of formal education can still mean very well worth looking at. Only ranting was never a useful form of expression at any time. And most people know it.

But still we feel sorry, and can only hope MIM revives. Damn. And at such a close time to the federal election. I always said this was a period of unusual risk and danger for community politics with a stale cynical 11 year old federal govt hanging on grimly by its fingernails. MIM as it is known seemed to be ahead of the curve ball generally speaking.

The key to community publishing is interactivity, without the hogwash and sabotage. Not really that hard to establish, look at the long long comments strings on YouTube. It can be done.

Here is the last official post for the time being:

Melbourne Indymedia Suspends Publishing


Open publishing has been suspended on Melbourne Indymedia as numbers in our editorial collective are insufficient to manage the site effectively and responsibly. We realise that MIM has played a vital role in reporting activist news from Melbourne, around Australia and internationally. To this end the present collective will be assessing options for how best to provide an activist news service in the future. If you wish to get involved, please contact us, or subscribe to our mailing list.

While open publishing is suspended, our collective suggests if you have a well researched, well-written story about Melbourne events, you should post the story to Sydney Indymedia. We thank our many loyal readers and contributors for several years of grassroots journalism and media activism and hope we can resume reporting with an even better interface at some stage in the future.

Melbourne Indymedia Collective

Posted by editor at 10:31 PM NZT
Paul Kelly gets it right and wrong on GHG reduction models - it's the same mechanism whether Kyoto, G8, APEC, Bali
Mood:  cool
Topic: globalWarming


We just had to add a comment to Paul Kelly's blog here:

No easy way to share emissions cuts burden, Wednesday, June 13, 2007 

There is nothing intrinsically wrong with with anything "the Professor" writes but he fails to understand the history of environmental politics when he discusses the international geopolitics of green house gas (ghg) reductions today. 
You can't blame him too much really, it's not his field, nor the field of most of the others in the commentariat. They don't know their ecology from their zoology.
Here is our response:

Actually Kyoto was, and remains the valid model in a geo political economy.


It's based on the precedent of the Montreal Protocol targeting the ozone hole problem in that case not greenhouse gases.


China and India similarly didn't want to retool out of CFC and HCFC gases destroying the ozone layer.


The western  countries, including USA and little sir echo Australia, put their foot down on the ozone hole and said yes, you must retool or we embargo those goods/services inputed with those ozone depleting substances (ODS).


China and India retooled in 5 years in their huge populations so they could keep selling their air conditioners and fridges to the USA and other countries.


True the Montreal Protocol is a qualified success with a fair degree of backsliding and cheating, but basically the model works ... IF...there is a unified block of western countries hosting the buyers market here in the more affluent economies. In short the West controls the market access that India and China need, as much as the West need their cooperation on GHG reductions.


Actually a shame on this govt and Big Media for not knowing this environmental politics AO1. But then it was under this govt that the ABC cut Earthbeat in 2005  specialising in environmental policy. Get the picture?




This market based reality is indeed why China for one, with all its coal fired power stations is also accelerating their solar and other renewable energy industries as fast as they can. They know they've been here before on ODS. As I do. As anyone with some brains should by now. It is also why Rudd would be a better PM in the future with his Chinese language skills for the messy negotiation.


But what this situation also does reveal is that Australia as a main supplier to China and India is in fact part of the China-India block, and is playing a rodent like double game. To the West especially Europe we say we support ghg cuts, but to the East we say come and get our coal as much as you like until the music inevitably stops. 


The truth is Australia will cop the same discipline as these two major fossil fuel consumers China and India when the USA eventually stops playing chicken with global ecological reality just as they did with the ozone hole, and buckles down to a carbon constrained future and threatens refusal of Chinese etc goods . That would be about January 2009 when W Bush is removed from office along with his Big Oil mates.


Perhaps this is why Costello who gets climate change supports some insurance with a massive solar technology power plant in north west Victoria. It's our future, or very similar, too (geothermal, wind etc), not just China and India.


But it is quite shocking the level of rodent in Australia's dealings on this issue: The Australian Govt has been doing it's best to maximise our coal sales by literally working to delay (read sabotage) as long as possible the western markets inevitable guillotine on Chinese/Indian carbon rich cheap produce.


In this sense it doesn't matter what it's called - Kyoto, G8, APEC, Sydney, or Bali being the next scheduled UN talks in December 2007 (after our federal election as per Marian Wilkinson here G8 moves to put APEC in the political shade - Opinion - smh.com.au, an article that parallels Prof Kelly's article above).


The leverage on China and India remains the same, and has always remained in the hands of Western Countries if they were unified and serious: The threat of a collective ban on carbon rich sales into affluent western markets just like ODS under the Montreal Protocol. By the way the Montreal Protocol also systematised financial and technological transfers to India and China to meet the challenge on ODS just as will be necessary on GHG reduction West to East, and who knows East to West one day. 


The community of nations seems to be dancing to the carbon tune in a game of renewable energy musical chairs knowing full well the music stops with a market based guillotine sooner or later. And that it will indeed hurt many if not all if it's not done well. The key is to grow the number of renewable energy chairs and pronto.

Posted by editor at 12:05 PM NZT
Updated: Friday, 15 June 2007 10:09 PM NZT
Warren lifts the winter spirits with a real cracker today
Mood:  special
Topic: big media
Today's Sydney Daily Telegraph cartoon deserves its full due. That's not to say Moir in the Herald today is not curious and intriguing, but this really hit the spot today as far as lifting the gloom implicit in this: Babushka politics tough to crack
And Bill Leak is not even in the running imlying that real democracy only occurs through the pages of the 70% coverage of the Murdoch press, and not unmediated between citizens. Such a sad view of real democracy, and a determined attempt by that organisation at cooption of our country's future. In fact what the free speech debate is all about i.e. really free, not shepherded by such as the monolithic News Corp/Ltd.
As for the Peter Hartcher thesis about voter faith in the Coalition's economic management, we seem to recall that so called record unemployment measured at 1 hour per week, in the age of record casualisation, and stripping of conditions, looks alot like record UNDER EMPLOYMENT. And there is plenty on the web about our "poor record" of full time employment:
Issues: The human costs behind the official unemployment rate
and a quote of the ABS definitions here 
The Sydney Morning Herald Blogs: News Blog
And just one more thing: Australia deserves and needs much better than Mr Average for our national political leader. Mr Average is the last thing we need in a tough scary unsustainable world. The USA chose a Mr Average Intelligence in George W Bush to do a job requiring the skills of a cross between a brain surgeon and an auto electrician/motor mechanic. What a mistake.
The idea current PM John Howard was ever a Mr Average was always bogus and it's the last thing his successor should ever be.
If the average Mary and Joe prefers to vote for somone just like them, then God help all of us not least themselves. It's not in their best interests at all. Nuke weapon threat, terrorism, economic change. The right man for the job as PM is not average, God forbid.

Posted by editor at 10:58 AM NZT
Updated: Friday, 15 June 2007 11:49 AM NZT
Thursday, 14 June 2007
DPP tenure at risk as NSW Minister investigated by ICAC?
Mood:  quizzical
Topic: nsw govt


We hear that Premier Iemma on ABC radio noon today 14th June 07 via his Attorney General is consulting the Bar Association and NSW Law Society over the lifetime tenure of the DPP.

That's interesting. We think the Bar and Law Society may potentially have a conflict of interest getting involved in such "consultations".

Why so?

What if say a public watchdog was investigating a minister of the NSW Govt? Just say they were investigating them right now. If they were to make an adverse finding or discover adverse evidence, who would be obliged to proceed with prosecution of the NSW minister?

We think it would be Nick Cowdery, Director of the DPP who would decide to prosecute or not.

So the Law Society, and Bar Association as in effect chief officers of the court for their respective professions could be drawn into "thugging" of a DPP's life tenure, when their real interest if they were fully informed, might be to actually seek as much employment independence from the NSW Govt as possible.

We have been in correspondence with both the Law Society and Bar Association in relation to this.  We notice the Law Society carried the chief agent for Iemma on their Law Society Journal recently (as above).

We trust that doesn't affect their independent approach to the framework and status of employment of the DPP in these curious times.


Postscript #1 15th June 07

The more things change the more they stay the same:


DPP warns against fixed term moves

The New South Wales chief prosecutor has warned the State Government off any moves to limit his term to a fixed seven years.

Nicholas Cowdery has a lifetime appointment as the Director of Public Prosecutions, but the Premier says this is an anomaly and should be changed.

Bob Carr also says that if Mr Cowdery does not plan to move on soon, the Government might have to bring in the reform before his term ends.

Mr Cowdery says limiting the DPP's term could affect the independence of the office with political decisions being made to shore up a second term of employment.

"I would caution the Government to think very carefully before unilaterally altering the conditions against which I serve this office," he said.

"Unilateral interference with the terms of employment of a statutory office holder is not something to be undertaken lightly."


The President of the Bar Association Michael Slattery (whose office we lobbied yesterday on this) was on 702 ABC radio this morning just after 7 am. He pointed out the life time tenure of the DPP came in across many western countries to quarrantine the DPP from political interference in sensitive prosecutions - he didn't say but presumably like ex ALP MP Milton Orkopoulos pre 2007 state election, or say adverse findings by say ICAC of current ministers.

The Daily Telegraph is running a story with the line that the up until now esteemed ICAC have a director on a limited tenure term. The trouble with that example is that the ICAC have become quite mediocre and ineffective from this writer's view. Well who cares about us you might say. Significantly some influential writer(s) at the Murdoch owned Sydney Telegraph have reached a similar conclusion.

The Telegraph were concerned about some matter of public policy or other that wasn't pursued with quite the vigour or acuity that they thought was needed.

 Off the record a very senior journalist at Fairfax has made similar sceptical comments to this writer regarding the success rate or effectiveness of ICAC.

For our part we we worried about consistent failure of the govt over years to seriously prosecute rich farmers of outrageous breach of land clearing laws, and ICAC determination to avoid any flushing out  the sleaze behind that approach at political level.

It's a long time since we had the impressive ICAC's Ian Temby QC rampaging against Nick Greiner's tricky jobs for Indy MP's in the Metherell Affair. In that situation at heart was the protection of the environment concerns of ex MP Metherell who refused to deliver up his vote in parliament to destroy.... forests, in a hung parliament.

If only we had an ICAC with that kind of guts today. Maybe with life time tenure they would?

We suggest the last word should go to this scathing criticism of the federal govt sleazing of the independence of their federal public service by destroying permanent heads of department. Sound familiar?:

14th June 2007 Editorial Sydney Morning Herald

Manacling the mandarins

TENSIONS between politicians and public servants are inherent in the Westminster system, a fact exploited to brilliant effect in television's Yes Minister. But there is nothing funny about what has happened to the relationship between ministers and mandarins, between ministerial advisers and bureaucrats, over recent decades, and particularly under the Howard Government. The politicisation of the federal public service - the imposition of the electoral and ideological priorities of the party in power on supposedly apolitical officials - has gone so far it poses a serious threat to Australian democracy.

The warning bells have been rung by an authoritative insider, Andrew Podger, a former public service commissioner and head of three different federal departments. In the Australian Journal of Public Administration, Mr Podger says changes to the conditions under which departmental secretaries - they used to be called "permanent heads" - are employed, rewarded and penalised have eroded their independence and professionalism. The big turning points were the introductions of job contracts for secretaries (by the Keating government in 1994) and of performance-based bonuses as a percentage of their salaries (in 1999). These changes, and the increasing tendency to give all but "favoured" departmental chiefs contracts of three years, rather than five, have heightened the tension between the requirements that they be both professionally impartial and responsive to government wishes. The result, says Mr Podger, has been greater emphasis on "responsiveness" and a tendency on the part of senior officials to hedge bets, limit the issues on which to take a stand and craft documents more carefully.

It is depressing, given the roles of politicians and public servants in scandals and cover-ups such as the "children overboard" affair, mistreatment of migration detainees and AWB. Doubtless, Mr Podger will be accused of special pleading - he candidly admits having once been denied reappointment and once denied a bonus - but he is persuasive in his calls for a return to five-year contracts as the norm for secretaries, while retaining flexibility, and for the end of performance pay at this level. Unhappily, the Government is as unlikely to listen as it is to face up to the even graver problem posed by unaccountable ministerial advisers.

And now today in their  Editorial today:

Starving the DPP into submission

June 15, 2007
THE Iemma Government has long since stopped listening to its critics in the public service. Labor has installed its apparatchiks as department heads. Now one of the last independent voices is slowly having the gag tied around his mouth. That is the lesson to be drawn from the Government's attempts to bully Nicholas Cowdery, the Director of Public Prosecutions.

The DPP's budget is to be cut and the operations of his office are to be subjected to an extraordinary audit. Mr Cowdery may hold the office for life but the Government is looking at ways to ensure his successors do not. Mr Cowdery is not accused of serious malpractice or incompetence, though the Government would dearly like to trump up an overseas trip he had planned into a scandal. His real - his only - crime is candour. At different times he has been less than wholeheartedly in support of Government law and order policy. He made some tart, but justified, comments about the egregious state plan. But candour, under the Iemma Government, is the worst crime of all. Now Mr Cowdery will suffer for it. Yet the Government is playing a dangerous game.

Its first danger is that by neutering the office of the DPP, one of the few remaining independent sources of advice is silenced. We will not speak of the move as unwise: it is demanding too much to require wisdom in politicians. Let us just call it counterproductive. Governments of all persuasions need their servants to speak the truth without fear. How will they know what is happening in the world around them if all they hear is flattery or their spin played back to them?

Second, and more important, it is dangerous because it places too much power in the hands of the government of the day. The Iemma Government may not have heard of the separation of powers, but the rest of the community has. Once the DPP becomes subject to executive pressure - and that is the intention of the campaign against Mr Cowdery - the prosecutor risks becoming the attack dog of the government of the day. The impartiality of the law is put in danger. Temporary political storms whipped up against individuals or groups - and how many of those have we seen in recent years? - can then become truly oppressive. A DPP on a short leash becomes a direct threat to democracy. The Government should back off immediately.


The Green Party have chimed in here too:

15 June 2007

Govt tries another repellent for DPP pest

Greens MP Lee Rhiannon says the Iemma government*s proposed review of
the tenure of the NSW DPP is designed to strip the chief prosecutor of
protection crucial to guaranteeing his independence and indicates a
rotten government bent on silencing its critics.

*The judicial appointment model for the DPP, which has been adopted
in NSW and other jurisdictions around the world, is key to protecting
the prosecution process from political meddling,* Ms Rhiannon said.

*The government is clearly intent on putting the Director of Public
Prosecutions on limited tenure.

 *The Iemma government*s manoeuvre smacks of a school yard bully
set on securing its ascendancy.

*The review is one more attempt to silence a valuable critic of the
Iemma government*s popularist law and order policies. It follows
Treasurer Michael Costa*s plan to cut the DPP*s budget.

*The government*s bid to control key appointments and bury
information that should properly be in the public domain is eroding
democracy in this state.

"Mr Nicholas Cowdery QC has been an outspoken critic of Labor's justice

*Mr Cowdery had the courage to label the State Plan a 'political
and has resisted government attempts to meddle in his sentencing and
appeal decisions.

*Provisions exist to dismiss the DPP for misconduct that ensure
accountability alongside life tenure.

*Preserving the independence of the DPP is crucial for the quality of
justice in this state.

*Greens MPs will vote against any attempts to downgrade the NSW model
for DPP appointments,* Ms Rhiannon said.

Contact: Lee Rhiannon 9230 3551, 0427 861 568.


Powerful article here by Fairfax's Andrew Clennell 15th June 07

Cowdery has rare freedom to say what he thinks - for now  NICHOLAS COWDERY has been fearless in asserting his independence.

Telegraph story page 2 here, seems to be offline (maybe) - Fixed term moves on prosecutors

Posted by editor at 2:15 PM NZT
Updated: Friday, 15 June 2007 10:51 AM NZT
M4 East road plan: ALP Premier's moral veil of therapeutic cloning can't cover environmental atrocities
Mood:  sharp
Topic: nsw govt

In the months leading up to the state election new Premier Iemma’s government was mercilessly attacked by both major dailies Sydney Morning Herald and Daily Telegraph for allowing the economy to stagnate. There were widespread fears as here  NSW economy a brake on prosperity: PM - Breaking News - National ... affecting the political news cycle.


These fears didn’t quite eventuate as reported here  NSW economy 'sound' despite low growth. 06/09/2006. ABC News Online and here: Growing NSW economy dodges recession fears - Economy - State


However we wrote a prediction 12 months ago on Sydney IMC website that the environment was in for a thrashing under Iemma as a result. We predicted it would be a lead foot on the accelerator for economic growth at any cost ….to save his venal political career. Similarly we almost got beaten up for writing this outside a polling booth on election day:


Picture: Embarrassing secret ALP policy? We chalked about 5 of these NO TUNNEL signs and they were washed off presumably by the ALP booth workers within 10 minutes before 7 am corner of Warren Rd and Illawarra Rd 24th March 2007.


In this sense Iemma is no different to predecessor Carr forced out in 2005 for lack of confidence as the moral veil for his atrocities disintegrated. Carr was all for the same Big Business cronyism, nepotism and favours to Big Business in the Union, Construction and Finance sectors involving various public policy atrocities: Tollway roads, congested expansion of centralised port facilities at Botany, pulling the teeth of the Environmental Planning Act. It was an evil ten years facilitated by a moral veil over the wickedness: In Carr’s case natural heritage protection with 300 odd national parks.


But Carr did his best to ruin even that with just as much forest destruction at record high rates still going on today: Chipstop Campaign in SE NSW


Iemma’s political strategy has been very simple and effective to date in response to the core issue of economic competence – take on huge public debt to finance rollout of infrastructure development at any environmental or amenity cost to pump prime the economy to moderate the savagery of the Big Media. So there was never any doubt about Anvil Hill coal mine approval under his regime as here, only the timing:


Anvil Hill approved: Iemma gutless on coal and climate change ...


Anvil Hill Mine Approved - Investor Relations > ASX/Media Releases ...


They Big Media/Big Business Complex must be fed big chunks of meat for their institutional clients/advertisers to keep the revenue churning over. And so former political numbers man at Sussex St, now Treasurer Michael Costa will roll out this strategy for the NSW budget on 19th June 2007 with some $10 to 20 billion in public debt.


But like Carr he needs a moral figleaf to suspend disbelief at the gorging and rorting at the expense of the public. As a long time participant and critic of NSW politics this writer has learned the public will only suspend their disbelief, even the more naïve plods in companies like Media Monitors, if there is a symbolic higher moral purpose to keep believing democracy is not in fact broken in an appalling money politik gerrymander. In Iemma’s case that figleaf is now apparent being therapeutic cloning: MPs to debate ban on therapeutic cloning - Breaking News ... to help find the cure to various illnesses.


Carr – natural heritage. Iemma – curing the sick. And the fact it involves sledging meddlesome Cardinal Pell is a side benefit with Mr Iemma senior reportedly being a bitter critic of the old village priest back in Italy.


It’s a cynical strategy for an ALP Govt that has lost its existential purpose and simply funnels money to its mates. But it causes some strange jarring results. Verity Firth MP newly elected in Balmain was busy leading the PR on therapeutic cloning but will have a new M4 East road through her electorate:


Photo of Councillor Verity Firth


No mention of this pre election. The road will certainly generate greater air pollution congestion and cancers needing a cure from cell cloning.


Similarly former minister Carmel Tebbutt and MP for Marrickville will also likely have a tunnel with cancer causing ventilation stacks for the same road. No wonder she bailed out of cabinet on election night, to get some daylight between herself and this thuggish cynical Premier:


Picture: Taken at 9.35 am election day 24th March at corner of Illawarra Rd and Warren Rd Marrickville, 3 hours after earlier incidents, 24th March 2007: Question: "Tom McLoughlin, SydneyAlternativeMedia news blog. On the record Minister, in relation to the terrible truck accident in the [Burnley] Tunnel in Melbourne, do you think that could happen here in Sydney with so many motorway tunnels?" Answer by Carmel Tebbutt local ALP MP for Marrickville: "I don't know anything about that. I really couldn't say."


MEDIA RELEASE - 13 June 2007

M4 East motorway another post election Labor bad news story

Greens MP and transport spokesperson Lee Rhiannon said today that Premier Morris Iemma and other prominent Labor MPs mislead the people of the Inner West by not announcing prior to the NSW election that they intended to proceed with the M4 East motorway through the inner west.

"Labor knows that the M4 East is a bad news story and they wanted to sweep their plans under the carpet until after the NSW election," Ms Rhiannon said.

"Prior to the NSW state election Marrickville MP Carmel Tebbutt, Balmain MP Verity Firth and Roads Minister Eric Roozendaal denied that the Labor government had any plans to build the M4 East.

"It is now clear that the Labor MPs were wolves dressing up in sheep's clothing.

"The M4 East will increase traffic congestion and air pollution and be a financial drain on the public purse.

"The Richmond Review revealed that inner surburban motorways such as the M4 East would not be economically viable.

"The Iemma government will have to take money out of schools and hospitals to subsidise this motorway.

"The costs of this project far outweigh any so-called benefits to the community. There will be increased traffic congestion, pollution, accident costs and reduced public transport patronage.

"This project does not fit into any strategic network planning for the Inner West.

"The Greens forced the release of papers last year that showed that the M4 East motorway was on the cards but the Iemma government were quick to put a cone of silence around their plans.

"The Iemma government mislead the public on this issue. Sydney will now be lumped with yet another traffic inducing expensive motorway", Ms Rhiannon said.

For more information: Lee Rhiannon 9230 3551, 0427 861 568


The last word should go to community group RAPS which has suffered the M5 East all these years as an indicator of what the rest of Sydney is now about to suffer.




R A P S Residents Against Polluting Stacks Inc, Sydney NSW Australia  www.nostack.8m.com

J  U  N E    2  0  0  7    N  E  W  S  R  A  P  S  #1









05    'SOMETHING IN THE AIR' - SMH 01.06.2007

06    'HEALTH FEAR OVER DIESEL' - SMH 01.06.2007








B R I E F  w R A P S  


*    Sign the global petition for world leaders to take action on climate change, in the lead up to tne next G8+5 summit.  http://www.avaaz.org/en/climate_g8/tf.php


*    Hello to the Botany Bay and Catchment Alliance which posts our newsletter to its website. Incrased container movements into Sydney will impact the already overloaded M5 East: http://www.botanybay.info/


*    Comment on the Independent Port Botany review before June 8: http://www.ipart.nsw.gov.au/search/search_results.asp?sidebarSearchTextBox=port+botany&Search=Search


*    Engineering firm Heggies has been contracted by Willoughby City Council to install, operate and maintain an Ambient Air Quality Monitoring Station to assess the impact of the Lane Cove Tunnel on       

     local air quality. The station will monitor carbon Monoxide, oxides of Nitrogen (NOX), PM10 and PM2.5. http://www.infolink.com.au/articles/Heggies-to-assess-the-impact-of-Sydneys-Lane-Cove-Road-Tunnel-on-local-air-quality_z52104.htm


*    Farewell and best wishes to Sun Herald journalist Alex Mitchell, a long time supporter of RAPS who has now retired from the newspaper.


*    Residents around the Cross City Tunnel portals can now receive emails from the tunnel operators about planned venting of emissions from portals. Under the Conditions of Approval,vehicle emissions must be     discharged from the Tunnel through the stack except in emergencies http://www.crosscity.com.au/DynamicPages.asp?cid=99&navid=9 and air qualityreports:http://www.crosscity.com.au/DynamicPages.asp?cid=100&navid=9. But why just the Cross City Tunnel?


*    Read the government health study and compare the results with what residents had to say about the health of the effects of the Port Kembla smoke stacks: https://www.mja.com.au/public/issues/171_4_160899/westley/westley.html and http://www.sep.org.au/cancer/inquiry/index.htm and http://www.sep.org.au/cancer/findings.pdf


*    Sydney's transport system is unnecessarily confusing because passengers are not given enough information or encouragement to use major transit hubs, a NSW Auditor General's audit has found.

http://audit.nsw.gov.au/publications/reports/performance/2007/public_transport/publictransport-contents.htm and http://www.smh.com.au:80/news/national/lost-in-transit-were-going-nowhere-fast/2007/06/06/1181089151642.html?sssdmh=dm16.263558 and http://www.nsw.liberal.org.au/public_news_and_events/media_releases/transport_interchanges_labor_has_failed_to_meet_long_term_transport_needs.html and http://lee.greens.org.au/index.php/content/view/1886/50/

*    Queensland has become the first state to increase taxes on gas-guzzling cars in an attempt to encourage more motorists to buy fuel-efficient hybrid vehicles. http://www.smh.com.au:80/news/national/car-taxes-to-rise-in-green-drive/2007/05/30/1180205338904.html






RAPS is concerned very little has been done since the March election regarding the M5

East filtration proposal.


Latest news from the RTA is that it could be months before additional information required by

the Department of Planning's February Compliance Audit is gathered : http://www.planning.nsw.gov.au/asp/m5.asp


However, RAPS will now meet with the RTA on June 19th





On 31st May, 2007, in response to a question by the the Hon David Clarke on the

progress of air quality improvements in and around the M5 East tunnel, Roads

Minister Roozendaal told the NSW Upper House that a package of measures

was being put in force to improve air quality in and around the tunnel, that the

government was committed to the installation of Australia's first road tunnel

filtration system and that a revised ventilation strategy would not commence
until the filtration plant was operational.


The Minister's answer, unfortunately, shows that little progress has been made, with

the RTA apparently sticking to its flawed plan, or the Minister not being kept properly



*    Minister's response: http://parliament.nsw.gov.au/prod/parlment/hanstrans.nsf/v3ByKey/LC20070531

*    Is the Minister in control? http://www.smh.com.au:80/news/national/minister-in-drivers-seat-on-road-to-nowhere/2007/05/30/1180205338928.html





The National Health and Medical Research Council's 'Air Quality in and around

tunnels' conference was held in Canberra on Tuesday 15th May, 2007. 


The aim was to provide advice to Federal Health Minister, Tony Abbot on the need

for new air quality regulations in and around tunnels.  It was chaired by prominent

epidemiologist, Professor Michael Moore of Queensland University with experts

on air quality such as Professor Lidia Morowska of Queensland University of

Technology, co-author of the recent WHO document on the design of health

investigations of the impacts of pollution.


In all, there were about 50 attendees from departments of health end environment

around Australia and others from medical and air quality backgrounds. Community

advocates included Graham Lorrimer from Victoria, who advised the community

on the Burnley tunnel and Sydney community representatives Professor Ray

Kearney and Mark Curran. 


Although it is clear that the most effective way of controlling pollution is at the source,

by cleaning up the fleet, reducing both traffic and congestion and the use of public

transport, it was also clear that there are significant concerns about the levels of

in-tunnel pollutants and the way in which they are regulated. In addition, there was

concern about the way in which impacts outside the tunnels are addressed.


There was a widely held opinion that the current 'rules' look inadequate and  that,

besides carbon monoxide- the only component currently regulated - it is important to

consider  nitrogen dioxide and particles, both by themselves, but more importantly

acting together.


The information is still embargoed but there should be an announcement  before July. 


The M5 looks to be amongst the worst polluted urban tunnels in the developed world.

What is considered bad in Europe is a daily event in the M5.


*     Watch RAPS conference webpage for updates: http://www.raps.bur.st/nhmrc/tunnels/index.html

*    Background media : http://www.news.com.au/story/0,23599,21623225-421,00.html

*    RAPS discussion paper on regulation of pollutants in Sydney tunnels: http://www.raps.bur.st:80/nhmrc/tunnels/index.html





"    Air pollution could kill one Sydney resident every four hours by the year 2030

if the city's car obsession continued at its current rate, the lord mayor said today.


The figure is eight times the number of people killed in road accidents."


*    Daily Telegraph story from 07.06.2007: http://www.smh.com.au:80/news/news/something-in-the-air/2007/05/31/1180205408805.html



05    'SOMETHING IN THE AIR' - SMH 01.06.2007

"    Diesel produces fewer greenhouse gases than unleaded petrol but it is more

dangerous to our health.


Demand for diesel-powered cars is soaring. Australians bought more diesel cars

in the first four months of this year than they did in the whole of 2005.


However, the explosive growth is a double-edged sword."


*    SMH story from 01.06.2007: http://www.smh.com.au:80/news/news/something-in-the-air/2007/05/31/1180205408805.html



06   'HEALTH FEAR OVER DIESEL' - SMH 01.06.2007


" A big increase in the number of diesel cars - including those using so-called clean

diesel - has raised fresh concerns about the health effects of the fuel.


An immunologist, Ray Kearney, said the emissions from diesel had been linked to

asthma attacks, cardiovascular and respiratory disease and cancer. Governments had

been slow to legislate against it, he said.


"Diesel pollution kills people. One in five lung cancer deaths can be attributed to fine

particles from burning fossil fuels," Dr Kearney said.


SMH article: http://www.smh.com.au:80/news/national/health-fears-over-diesel/2007/05/31/1180205431088.html

and commentary: http://www.smh.com.au/news/news/comment/2007/05/31/1180205408796.html





" NSW motorists may be warned to wind up their windows when entering smoggy freeway

tunnels under a proposal being considered by the State Government.


A report resulting from last year's parliamentary air quality inquiry has recommended motorists

keep their windows up when driving through tunnels.


The Roads and Traffic Authority has continually declined to place health warnings at the entrance
to tunnels, but Parliament could force it to act."


*    SMH story from 27.05.2007: http://www.smh.com.au/news/national/smog-threat-for-drivers-in-tunnels/2007/05/26/1179601733713.html





" Sydney residents will be able to register for real-time Government SMS air pollution health

alerts under a proposal Premier Morris Iemma will take to Cabinet next week.


The Saturday Daily Telegraph reports that an email and SMS advance warning system would

be developed in response to key recommendations from a parliamentary air quality inquiry last year.


The inquiry report warned that 1600 people were dying every year from air pollution related illness."


*    Daily Telegraph story from 26.05.2007: http://www.news.com.au/story/0,23599,21795534-2,00.html?from=public_rss

*    Inquiry website: http://www.parliament.nsw.gov.au/prod/parlment/committee.nsf/0/3ECF8ABFA09039A6CA257187000D2442





" A NSW government plan for real-time SMS air pollution health alerts is a sign the government

has failed to manage Sydney's transport crisis, the Greens say.


Under the proposal which NSW Premier Morris Iemma is due to take to Cabinet next week,

residents will be able to register to receive text messages providing pollution data across the

Sydney metropolitan area, The Saturday Daily Telegraph reports."


*    The Age story from 26.05.2007: http://www.theage.com.au/news/National/Greens-criticise-SMS-smog-alert-proposal/2007/05/26/1179601713645.html





" New South Wales Greens say that a State Government plan for an SMS pollution alert is

an inadequate response to the city's air quality problems"


*    ABC online story from 26.05.2007: http://www.abc.net.au:80/news/newsitems/200705/s1934063.htm





" Premier Morris Iemma's SMS pollution alert system for Sydney is an admission of government failure to

manage this city's transport crisis Greens MP and transport spokesperson Lee Rhiannon said today.

"It is alarming that the Premier's plan for dealing with Sydney's smog
is to issue a warning rather than increase public transport and so
reduce the volume of traffic that is the cause of this pollution," Ms
Rhiannon said.

"The SMS pollution alert system is a doomsday response to Sydney's
dirty air that is killing more and more people."


*    Greens Media release from 26.05.2007 here:http://lee.greens.org.au/index.php/content/view/1886/50/



RAPS Inc is an incorporated community group representing residents and workers affected by the M5 East

tunnel, ventilation stack and portals. We meet on one Tuesday night of the month at Earlwood Bowling Club,

Doris Ave Earlwood NSW, Australia.


Please email us if you are thinking of attending to confirm that the meeting is on. cbri7447@bigpond.com 

RAPS Inc is funded entirely by $10 membership fees and community donations. We receive no grants from

council or government bodies.


We currently have significant costs, and need to build up funds for ongoing outlays such as public liability

insurance well and professional advice and help. Please help us to keep going by sending a donation to:

PO Box 270 Earlwood NSW 2206 Australia
Telephone: 061 02 9558 8863, 061 02 9573 0052, 061 02 9559 1278



RAPS Inc is a member of GASP, Groups Against Stack Pollution, a coalition of community groups with

similar aims and objectives affected by similar stacks from around Sydney's Cross City and Lane Cove tunnels.



Our email list is maintained in confidence at the sending address only.


To subscribe, unsubscribe or change email addresses for this newsletter reply to this email or send an

email to cbri7447@bigpond.com with "ADD TO MAILING LIST" or "DELETE FROM MAILING LIST" in the subject line.



So much for integrity in NSW politics

Picture: Green booth worker next to poster, election day March 2007.

Posted by editor at 1:44 PM NZT
Updated: Thursday, 14 June 2007 2:12 PM NZT
Poem for the Hill of Tara in Ireland on World Monuments Funds top 100 endangered world heritage sites
Mood:  sharp
Topic: world


Irish Times yesterday 13th June 2007
Greens agree on terms to join coalition government
And this forwarded by Maireid Sullivan
My friends,
Here is the latest news on the betrayal of all that Tara represents in Irish heritage, for fraudulent and treasonous political and financial gain!
This report from the Irish Times is followed by a brilliant new poem for Tara.
We must not give in, especially now that Tara has been listed on the World Monuments Funds top 100 endangered world heritage sites.
In solidarity!
for the Anam Cara for Tara arts action campaign
and the GlobalArtsCollective.org
The Road of Ancient Tara’s Ruin

Two dogs bark
A man nods and
the pilgrims shield
the flames on the hill
known as Tara.

For if Ireland has a heart- it beats in Tara.
Tara. Mating bed of sun and soil where
fire was born and water bled from
stone. Where winds blew seed
that fed the men of Eire.

Tara - Seat of Kings - not born - but fought
and Druid sworn. Where poet, priest and
pauper stood – arm in arm to hold the line
a thousand years. Nay! three thousand years
this lore of Eire.

This rising hill - where men
in battle roared and horses reared
as blades rose high and
curbed the arms that drove
the lance into the heart of Tara.

Recall the kings once crowned -
born of ancient creed who fed on
goose - now dead and slain -
and buried deep in
ancient Ireland’s name.

No more the threat from o’er
the sea rapes Tara. But incest deep
within her fathers land tears
her skin and bares the secrets
buried deep in Tara’s womb.

Blows still the wind on Tara’s slope and
stirs the ancient soul – still the blade is strong
and fast the lance that carves a path into her soul
as unsworn kings bleed her dry
while the jesters chew their fat.

Hold strong the Hill of Tara
let it beat in silence, rest. Shield her
burning heart and cheer
the roar of weary pilgrims lest we ride
the road of ancient Tara’s ruin.

Bill Clohesy 2007

Bill Clohesy has lived in Emerald, in the Dandenong Ranges east of Melbourne, Australia, for 15 years. His work has been published in several Woorilla Publications and in Tain Magazine and has been presented on ABC Regional Radio. He won the Syd Cantlon Poets Award at the 2006 Kilmore Celtic Festival. He is currently working on a novel examining the relationship between the Irish and the Chinese on the Ballarat goldfields.
Postscript #1
Sent: Thursday, June 14, 2007 12:03 PM
Subject: More on Irish Green Party compromise

The following report just in from Dr. Murieann Ní Bhrolchain in Dublin (Spokesperson for Campaign to Save Tara)

Hi all,
Coverage of todays events as they unfolded. Greens voted to go into
Government with Fianna Fail by 421 votes for and 67 against. That's an
astounding majority. Campaign to Save Tara were at the conference all
day. It was quite an eerie experience with all the media presence and
the various pressure groups present. Not long back myself and sorry for
the delay in relaying information. We will be present at the Dail
tomorrow from 10am to draw attention to Tara - never saw so much
attention paid to the issue as there was today. Whatever else may be
said - the issue was at the heart of the formation of Government - come
to the Dail tomorrow and support us. The archaeological sites are still
there. The road can be moved - there is a National Monument in the way.
The Greens may get the Environment Ministry - in that case not all is
lost yet. So let's see what happens tomorrow when the ministers are
announced. there is a way around this.
And I'm not generally an optimist.

RTE News: Green Party meets for Govt deal vote
Greens gather amid protests
WEDNESDAY 13/06/2007 14:05:16

Posted by editor at 11:12 AM NZT
Updated: Thursday, 14 June 2007 4:07 PM NZT

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