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Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Minister decides on mill assessor [03nov05]

The Mercury: Minister decides on mill assessor [03nov05]

FEDERAL Environment and Heritage Minister Ian Campbell has decided the Resource Planning and Development Commission will be the assessing authority for the pulp mill.

A spokeswoman for Senator Campbell, Renae Stokes, said the process would allow for public consultation.

"The assessment will be at least equivalent to an Environmental Impact Statement," she said. The process was re-examined after Gunns Ltd submitted a changed project scope for the mill in August.

Gunns Limited brand manager Sarah Dent said its integrated impact statement was due by the end of the year.

Tamar Residents Action Committee co-ordinator Les Rochester said Senator Campbell had not taken the views of Tasmanians.

A meeting of 600 people in August called for the project to be assessed by an independent national body," he said.

"We would expect the RPDC to launch a new period of public submissions on the new project referral submitted by Gunns and signed off by the federal minister."

He said TRAC did not believe the RPDC was independent, as the State Government appointed commissioners.


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