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TAS Country : December 16th 2010
24 Tasmanian Country Friday, December 17, 2010 Opinion Forestry decline a disturbing development CHEWS theFAT David Byard If our leaders think that cherries and grapes will take the place of things like potatoes in the short-term they areinfora shock' THE forest industry decline is a de- bacle. The whole situation is a mess. Most people thought the Federal Government would step up to the plate and compensate people hit hard by the collapse. It seems while Prime Minister Julia Gillard has backed the draft Statement of Principles, there will not be any Federal Government compensation. But sadly, taxpayers may end up paying in the form of longer dole queues. How is Tasmania going to have a diverse economy that creates wealth and all the flow-on benefits including jobs when we shut up shop on fores- try?How many people in Tasmania are in or rely on wealth-creating busines- ses like agriculture, forestry, fishing and manufacturing? I fully understand and support the other industries and sectors that create wealth and jobs. We need to be inclusive and we need to have multiple enterprises to share the risk -- a patchwork of enterprises across Tasmanian utilising all our resources sustainably. In forestry, 6000 people are employed directly and many more (probably double that) supply and service trucks, skidders and excavators. I have dreadful feeling that by locking up forests, a lot of people will discover to their horror that things like forestry will have a direct influence on their incomes. Can a state the size of Tasmania afford to lose so many wealth-creating jobs? If the community and the Govern- ment accept that proposition, what are they going to be replaced with? And unfortunately there is a great deal of misinformation and negativity about forestry. I read articles from experts explain- ing how forestry needs fire and disturb- ance to keep it vibrant and how older trees that have reached maturity are not a good carbon sink. Then we get campaigns by conser- vation groups claiming that infor- mation is not true. And so it all becomes confusing. New Zealand is generally recognised as having a clean green image. The country is innovative, has a diverse economy and uses its natural resources effectively and efficiently. New Zealand burns timber for power creation, even digging tree stumps up and burning them to create power. In Tasmania, if one were to suggest we look at ways to use forest waste for power, one can expect to be jumped on from a great height by conservation interests. In New Zealand, they are using pine trees to create biofuels. My understand- ing is that there are processes emerg- ing that allow the extraction of biofuels from timber at a competitive price. This is an innovative process that could be a great new industry for Tasmania. But because it is part of the forestry industry, I am sure it will never get up here. Tasmania becoming the food bowl of the nation is an interesting concept, but our leaders and those departments advising them seem to be living in a world of fantasy. Premier David Bartlett claims a hectare of ground could deliver $40,000 through grapes, cherries and the like. What Mr Bartlett fails to mention is the start-up and capital costs, the fixed costs, the vagaries of the Tasmanian weather and the long list of risks. Mr Bartlett and those advising him need to understand that these products are also grown on the mainland and overseas with the advantage of econ- omies of scale and cheaper costs. The food bowl concept will never reach its potential unless we can differentiate the products and reduce the red tape and negativity in Tas- mania I'd suggest buying a lottery ticket each week provides better odds. In all economies you need to have stable industries that are the backstop, industries that can and do change over time. If our leaders think that cherries and grapes will take the place of things like potatoes in the short term they are in for a shock. 2006589-101217 Nitro-Cal B Nitrogen (N) as nitrate 15.8%w/v as ammonium 7.3%w/v TOTAL 23.1%w/v Calcium (Ca) as nitrate 11.8%w/v Boron (B) 0.02%w/v Nitro-Cal B supplies available nitrogen and calcium to growing crops. The high nitrate component is immediately available to crops. Nitro-Cal B does not contain urea. Triple K is a high analysis Phosphorous and Potassium product that can be used in Potato and other crops. Triple K contains soluble Phosphorous and Potassium that is immediately available to crops. To arrange delivery or more information contact: Wayne Firth - Yara Nipro O488 727 341 or Mark Rouse - Senior Agronomist Elders Tasmania 0488 094 140 Product is now available locally in 1000L IBC. For other Yara Nipro products new to Tasmania visit www.nipro.com.au Yara Nipro NPK liquid fertigation fertilisers are now available in Tasmania These clear liquid products are specifically designed for injection into overhead irrigation systems. Fertigation allows accurate and timely application of nutrients directly to the active root zone. Nitro-Cal B and Triple K are an ideal fit for potato, onion and poppy crops. Triple K Phosphorous (P) as water soluble 12.8%w/v Potassium (K)as phosphate 35.0%w/v
December 9th 2010
December 23rd 2010