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Sunday, November 13, 2005

Gunns offers pulp mill effluent assurances.

Gunns offers pulp mill effluent assurances. 14/11/2005. ABC News Online

Timber company Gunns is assuring Tasmanians it is safe to release pulp mill effluent into the Bass Strait, despite the discovery it flushes once every six months.

The first such study shows it empties very slowly.

Oceanographer Paul Sandery says westerly winds constantly push the water around in eddies.

"On average we think it's around 160 days up to six months," he said.

Greens Senator Christine Milne warns millions of litres of effluent will build up in the strait.

"I think what Tasmanians are going to say now is what they said back in 1989 when Wesley Vale was contemplated, we do not want the pollution of Bass Strait with effluent," she said.

But Gunns' chairman John Gay says the effluent is not a pollutant.

"The area has got a water flow fast enough and strong enough to make sure that any water going into Bass Strait doesn't have any effect on anything in Bass Strait at all," he said.

Gunns say the effluent will be made up of water, salt and brown waste from pulped

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