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Federal budget should give extra to schools, hospital and housing, not Gunns – Brown

Prime Minister Howard, who committed an extra $65 million to Gunns' pulp mill in last May's budget, should commit an extra $65 million to the people of northern Tasmania in next week's federal budget, Greens Leader Bob Brown said in Launceston this morning.
"Sixty-five million dollars will go a long way for public education, health and housing in northern Tasmania," Senator Brown said.

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Circular Head Greens meeting well attended

More than 50 people attended a meeting at Stanley Town Hall last night to hear national Greens leader, Senator Bob Brown talk about issues of the day affecting Tasmania, the nation and the world.
Senator Brown called for World Heritage listing of the Tarkine rainforest and wilderness region, saying that the long term job and income prospects from world attention on the Tarkine will be of much greater benefit than continued logging to export it as woodchips to Japan.
Senator Brown said a proposed 'tourist' road should be kept log truck free.

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10 climate crimes

The Howard Policy Agenda 1996 to 2006
Over the last 10 years the Howard government has repeatedly pushed climate change policy in the wrong direction. The economics of climate change are straight forward, we need to charge polluters for their emissions and give people and companies incentives to increase efficiency. The politics of climate change, however, has encouraged the Howard Government to spend billions of dollars pushing the economy in the wrong direction. The biggest mistakes of the last decade are:

Perverse policy measure

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Greens slam government over Telstra pay phone cut backs

The government is responsible for paving the way for Telstra to close a significant portion of its public phones services in Australia, Greens Leader Bob Brown said today.  
Telstra is aiming to remove 10,000 public phones by the end of next financial year. (See today's Sunday Age)
"The Howard government's universal service obligation allows for Telstra to cut the number of public phones down to 7500. While Telstra should maintain the public services, the real culprit if they don't is the Howard government," Senator Brown said.

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Howard Government Backs Newcastle International Airport

Greens condemn decision

The Government motion moved in the Senate this morning corroborates the Greens' contention that an international airport will be built on Kooragang Island at Newcastle, Greens Senator Bob Brown said.

"The motion moved by Senator Tierney states that the Liberal party, both state and federal, supports the proposed Kooragang Island International airport'," said Senator Brown.

"This is effectively Sydney's second airport. It will have a 'Very Fast Train' link to Sydney.

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Oil-refining process can employ at least 15 Tasmanians, says Brown

An oil-refining business capable of employing at least 15 Tasmanians is prepared to move to the North-West Coast if $2.5 million of federal funding can be obtained as part of the Burnie assistance package.

Greens Senator Bob Brown, who is backing the proposal, said it was a perfect opportunity for the Howard Government to support an innovative and environmentally-friendly import-replacing industry.

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Brown calls on Rundle to back local jobs, not log exports

The threat to 250 jobs at the sawmills in Wynyard and Scottsdale is yet another failure of the Regional Forest Agreement that will allow further log exports at the expense of local jobs, according to Australian Greens Senator Bob Brown.

Senator Brown warned that the pine logs sought by Auspine and Wynwood would simply be exported unprocessed if the mills closed their doors in a repeat of the situation at Burnie where domestic processing has shut down in favour of unlimited woodchip exports.

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Exports of chips up; imports of pulp and paper up; jobs and trees tumble down, says Brown.

Jobs plan for North-West Coast announced

Labor-Party policies are responsible for destroying both jobs and the environment in north-west Tasmania, according to Australian Greens Senator Bob Brown. However, Burnie and the north-west coast can bounce back if a Green four-point plan for jobs growth is adopted.

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Black Day For Environment says Brown

Following the release by Environment Minister Robert Hill of his consultation paper - Reform of Commonwealth Environment Legislation Australian Greens Senator Bob Brown has labelled today a black day for the environment.

"This process began under Ros Kelly, was continued by John Faulkner but has reached its final outcome under Robert Hill - the worst environment minister the country has seen," said Senator Brown.

"Under Hill's so called reforms the Franklin would be flooded, the Daintree would be logged and Fraser Island sand mined. It's a victory for big business.

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Tourism Beats Logging on Jobs and Growth

"Tourism contributes 5 times more to the Tasmanian economy than the native-forest logging industry", said Senator Bob Brown today at the release of a discussion paper on tourism.

"The tourism and native-forest industries are in direct competition for precious state resources yet tourism is often ignored. For example, the Regional Forest Agreement provided the logging industry with 20 times the amount of funds provided to tourism ($76m compared with $4m)", Senator Brown said.

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