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Tuesday, January 17, 2006

: Zucco drives a hybrid bargain with Greens [18jan06]

The Mercury: Zucco drives a hybrid bargain with Greens [18jan06]

HOBART alderman Marti Zucco says Greens alderman Philip Cocker should lead by example in buying a hybrid car.

And he accused the Greens of hypocrisy, saying all the Greens he could think of drove non-hybrid cars.

Ald Cocker has said the Hobart lord mayoral vehicle, a Holden Caprice, should be replaced with a hybrid vehicle -- which has both electric and petrol motors.

Ald Zucco said if Ald Cocker and fellow Greens alderman Helen Burnet, together with Greens leader Peg Putt, all bought hybrid cars with their own money, he would pursue the issue of phasing them in for council staff -- and the lord mayor.

"The question is what cars do Cocker, Burnet, Putt and their fellow politicians drive -- I assume not a hybrid," he said.

It is time for action from Ald Cocker rather than do as I say and not as I do.

"I am tired of hearing Greens talk about greenhouse gases -- but they drive normal cars."

Ald Burnet said she did not own a car and used a bicycle. Her partner had a car.

"I know of mayors in other states who have given up their limousine, particularly in semi-small cities like Hobart, and instead use taxis, cycle or walk," she said.

"I know Rob [Lord Mayor Rob Valentine] does that to a certain degree."

Ald Cocker said he owned a 1998 Ford Falcon station wagon and could not afford to replace it now but he was committed to buying a hybrid when they became affordable.

Greens in the House of Assembly do not own hybrid cars but for several years have tried to persuade the State Government to invest in a hybrid vehicle fleet.

Ms Putt unsuccessfully tried to replace the Holden Caprice the Government provides for her with a hybrid vehicle.

Greens energy spokesman Nick McKim said the issue was about the Tasmanian Government showing leadership in energy efficiency.

"It's not good enough for any government or council talking about Tasmania being clean and green and not following through with actions," Mr McKim said.

He said Aurora Energy had some hybrid cars which was not only good for the environment but also good for Aurora's bottom line.


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