Tag Archives: colin barnett

Australian Mental Health at a critical stage, you can make a difference today and tomorrow wherever you are – WA: will Premier Barnett stand up for mental health?

Mental ill health is the leading killer of Australians under 45 and the leading cause of disability for all Australians.

PERTH, AUSTRALIA - JANUARY 21:  Australian Pri...
Premier Barnettt, PM Rudd

But with the biggest health reforms in decades up for negotiation on Monday, mental ill health may be forgottenunless we act now.

In just 48 hours, the Prime Minister and the leaders of every Australian state and territory will sit down in Canberra to negotiate a new plan for healthcare across the nation.

In their offices across Australia, our state Premiers and territory Chief Ministers are working all weekend in preparation for Monday’s meeting. They are deciding where to push hard, and where to compromise.

We’ve found the office fax number for WA Premier, Colin Barnett

We all want to see reform of our hospitals. But tackling mental health will require more than increasing the number of beds in our hospitals, or changing the source of health funding. More of the same won’t work.

GetUp!

There are solutions. Here’s just one example: there are 30 Government run Headspace centres across Australia. An extra $100million a year would expand capacity in these centres and build an extra 60 across the nation. This alone would double the number of young Australians receiving treatment for mental ill health.

On Monday, the PM will need every Premier on board, so here in WA, Colin Barnett will have huge influence. These decisions are being made in his office right now – let’s fill it with faxes asking him not to come home without mental health care reform:
www.getup.org.au/campaign/healthreform&id=1033

There must be no health reform without mental health reform. Together we can make sure this silent disease, which half of us will experience in our lifetime, is on the agenda at Monday’s crucial meeting of all levels of Australian Government.

Thanks for all that you do,
TheGetUp team

PS –

We’ve joined forces with Australian of the year, mental health expert Professor Patrick McGorry to call for mental health reform.

Already, tens of thousands of GetUp members have petitioned the Prime Minister and raised $85,000 for the campaign to put our message on TV.

Now it is our state Premiers who hold the keys to reform – click here contact yours now.

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Those abused in state care abandoned by the W.A. and Federal Governments as the UK apologises

The Peak Child Abuse group ASCA today tweeted the news of  British PM Gordon Brown’s apology to Australian child migrants acknoweldging it’s crucial to healing

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please click the blue link for the UK angle

” http://bit.ly/aoM64h via @ASCAORG > urgent action needed 4 #redress 2 “

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Labor and Liberal have failed at federal and state levels to discover a modicum of compassion.

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Kevin Rudd was on twitter today congratulating the aussie girl who won olympic gold in the ski aerials, saying gee we’ll have to set up a new ski facility won’t we.

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I had the temerity to reply on twitter

” @KevinRuddPM So if I win Gold at the Olympics, you cold fund some community mental health facilities – I’m starting training now Kevin! ”

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Taxpayer’s money is used to stage boxing matches (btw I MC martial arts and support boxing ) build footy stadia, freshen up our dullsville foreshore and there’s always lots of taxcash when it comes to self promoting “government” commercials.

For WA’s Barnett/Buswell and the previous Labor wombats to halve compensation for victims of abuse in state care is disgusting.

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Meanwhile, mainstream media is so tabloid and dollar driven that these issues are skimmed over or ignored, but gee my colleagues like to have a mass debate over daylight saving or shopping hours – day and night!

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Nevertheless I am an eternal optimist ( sometimes a bit jaded ) and have high hopes for activism and advocacy on the net through media like this blog and on twitter.

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So please join in, add a comment, ask a few questions of your local “member” and raise your voice for those who’ve already died as well as those currently in dire need.

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The state government, meanwhile has announced that victims who are expected to die before christmas will get their meagre share of the halved compo package earlier than the others – really, it’s in the letter

Letter from Redress – click the image to visit the Govt website

It IS life or death – and for far too many of us.

tony

West Australians abused in care exposed to more insult as Barnett Govt lays out a compensation plan that’s already had its budget halved, is late and facing more delays – SHAME

The “rollout” of payments to West Australians abused in State care has begun and incredibly, it has added more grief to the already considerable insult to the survivors.

We’ll hear in coming weeks on this blog some of the voices who are affected by this cold and heartless administration.

Pasted below the West story is a copy of one of the advisory letters from the Government Redress office.

from JESSICA STRUTT at  The West Australian

Only about 100 of almost 6000 applicants to the Redress scheme will today receive details of their ex-gratia payments as the first round of offers are made by the Government to former State wards.

The State Government is expected to face a backlash when it reveals the four categories of payments, more than 10 months after applications to the scheme closed.

A newsletter that applicants will start receiving this week says that, according to early assessments, about half of all applicants who detailed claims of abuse and/or neglect in State care will be eligible for the two lowest amounts available of $5000 and $13,000.

please read the full article here

Letter from Redress – click the image to visit the Govt website

W Australia Govt halves compensation to forgotten australians as PM says sorry – ABC News Article link.

 

WA premier colin barnett and treasurer troy buswell ( caps and honorifics are not deserved ) should both hang their heads, refusing to overturn their halving meagre compensation for victims of state abuse.

This Govt spends 10s of millions on unnecessary and unwanted regional projects, but cuts funds to traumatized state wards.

SHAME barnett and buswell, SHAME

Picture of Colin Barnett, Premier of Western A...
colin barnett - a VERY SMALL man

 

 

 

 

Remember this heartless pair at the next election.

Back to the old voting maxim…ABC – Anyone But Colin!

This Govt could not run a chook raffle.

Meanwhile the victims’ abuse has been acknowledged in Canberra as reported below.



ABC NEWS – Australia says sorry for ‘great evil’

0f01755140ec104a37910ef2f6505d79.jpg

Monday, November 16, 2009

By Online parliamentary correspondent Emma Rodgers

Prime Minister Kevin Rudd has given an emotional apology to the country’s Forgotten Australians, many of whom have gathered at Parliament House in Canberra today.

To view on a PC/Mac please use this link

http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2009/11/16/2743742.htm

To view on a mobile please use this link

http://m.abc.net.au/browse?page=11144&articleid=2743742&cat=Top_Stories

from @perthtones’ iPhone

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West Australia gets ready to DUCK & COVER to dance away the Uranium blues – Special Events Notice – You Don’t Want to Miss the Event of the Year!!!

*Please share this

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DANCE THE NIGHT AWAY AT THE DUCK & COVER HOP
A fancy dress fundraiser for the campaign to stop uranium mining in WA
http://duckcoverhop.wordpress.com

WHEN: Friday 6 November 2009
WHERE: Fremantle Town Hall
TIME: 7.30pm-midnight
Fully licenced bar & supper available

Travel back in time, dust off your cool threads and get crazy for a cause at the Duck and Cover Hop – Fremantle’s first and finest retro radioactive ball.

Dance the night away to Harry Deluxe and DJ Atomic ‘Burn’, with special appearances by the radioactive ladies of Sugar Blue Burlesque and the Swing Academy.

TIckets: $30 unwaged / $40 waged / $60 solidarity *all tickets include supper
BOOKINGS ESSENTIAL! Book here

For more information:
Email:
duckcoverhop
Web: http://duckcoverhop.wordpress.com

All money raised goes to the Anti-NuclearAlliance of Western Australia, Conservation Council of Western Australia & Fremantle Anti-Nuclear Group
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Sponsors: Fremantle City Council, Fremantle Festival & Little Creatures

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Kate Vallentine

ANAWA Campaigner

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5 King William Street, Bayswater WA 6053

Ph/Fax: (08) 9271 8786

Email: kate

Website: www.anawa.org.au

Twitter: https://twitter.com/ANAWA

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/home.php?#/pages/ANAWA/147771085564

Myspace: www.myspace.com/473370523

Youtube: http://www.youtube.com/user/AntiNuclearWA

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Mental Health Minister to address noon rally, can’t say what staff cuts have & will be made – Alison Xamon MLC Media Release

Alison Xamon MLC

MEMBER FOR THE EAST METROPOLITAN REGION

P.O. BOX 104, MAYLANDS, WESTERN AUSTRALIA 6931
PHONE (08) 9275 7474 – FAX (08) 9275 7574

The W.A. Mental Health Minister has told Parliament he doesn’t know what cuts to staff and services have been made in his portfolio as those behind the cuts of at last 13%,Troy Buswell and Colin Barnett, talk shopping hours.
mp3 audio cut 3 lays out the spin and distraction being put out by the Premier & Treasurer and runs 20 secs

Greens MLC Alison Xamon last night asked the Minister what cuts to staff and resources had been made and what cuts are coming. The reply was to the effect that it would take “some time” to provide answers.
mp3 audio Alison on his reaction and runs 25 secs

Ms Xamon also moved an Urgency Motion, supported by the Opposition, calling on the Government to spell out its plans for the sector.
mp3 Audio Ms Xamon explaining that the Mental Health Minister has little Idea what his Premier and Treasurer have done and have planned – runs 23 secs

Organisers of the midday rally to overturn the dedly cuts say they’ve been approached by the Minister, asking if he can speak to them as they deliver a petition to the Lower House.
mp3 Audio Alison on people in the public and private sector being fed up with spin and lack of answers to urgent questions – runs 22 secs

It will be worthwhile sending reporters and cameras to the midday rally to see what happens, and to interview the Auditor General who’s due to issue a report on the prformance of the Mental Health Sector around 1pm.

mp3 audio  Alison lashing the rush to make cuts before the AG’s report is handed down, and the lack of consultation with stakeholders, staff, service providers and those who use mental health services – runs 13 secs

There will be people from public and private groups like, the HSU, WAAMH, MHC, COMIC, RUAH etc, as well as the Minister, Shadow Minister, Alison Xamon, Many of my dear 6PR listeners and Twitter friends will be there too because this is life or death for many west australians and the damage will be almost impossible to undo.

IF YOU CAN’T MAKE THE NOON RALLY

please call talkback radio TODAY ( 6PR 922 11 882 )   You can also email Colin Barnett at wa-government@dpc.wa.gov.au or  Treasurer Troy Buswell at Minister.Buswell@dpc.wa.gov.au or call the Premier’s office today on 9222 9475, Troy Buswell’s office is 9222 9111  ( contact details are from the public WA Government website )

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In W. Australia – Some die waiting for a meagre measure of justice after being abused in State Care – a small vigil at Parliament today- Media Alison Xamon

Alison Xamon –

MLC for East Metropolitan

News release  (Tuesday October 13 )

Alison Xamon MLC for East Metropolitan ( Greens )
Alison Xamon MLC for East Metropolitan ( Greens )


Alison Xamon has been working closely with victims of state abuse for some time and laments the dwindling number of victims able to keep a monthly vigil at State Parliament.

The MLC for East Metropolitan says the halving of a meagre ex-gratia payment, and ongoing delays in paying even that have caused hardship and heartache that add more insult to awful injury.

“At midday today  a small group of our most vulnerable people will gather as they do each month to ask the Government for a small measure of justice that has been denied for decades and then cut in half.”

They are the last few members of the Redress activists keeping a monthly vigil, those West Australians who were officially acknowledged to have been abused while in State care, and many more who were removed from families her and abroad against their will or without consent of parents.

They will gather outside state Parliament at Midday in the faint hope that the Barnett Government will re-instate the full amount of compensation awarded to them, and ensure no more victims die waiting for the mostly inadequate funds

Only a few months ago a 50 year old woman eligible for Redress, but still waiting for its meagre justice, died ( click here for the ABC story of one victim who died just 2 months ago…still waiting )The money would have helped pay for her funeral, but even that late comfort was denied to her.

The Greens MLC asks “How many more people will die waiting – waiting for the full amount of Redress funds to be re-instated – waiting again once money’s been allocated for it to actually be paid.”


Alison is asking media to speak to the bravehearts at parliament today and hear how the Government’s funding cut and payment dlay are affecting people in our community.
Audio –
Cut 1   The Greens Alison Xamon says some of those waiting for payment were hoping to use it to travel to the family they were taken from al those years ago, and they are tiring of waiting for justice.      AlisonXamonRedress1-17secs-click blue link for short mp3 audio

Cut 2  Alison Xamon, who’s worked fro some tim with victims to get some measure of justic says those still waiting include a host of people originally from the UK as well as Indigenous Australians.    click this link for mp3 audio

Cut 3 The MLC for east metropolitan Alison Xamon says these people have been through enough, and the heartless State Government must overturn the funding cuts and remove ongoing delays to payments.    Click for mp3 audio AlisonXamonRedress3-17secs

Perth Mental Health Rally midday Wednesday 14th Oct at State Parliament, please copy and sign petition below – hear Greens MH spokesperson Alison Xamon on a tragic MH Week in WA

Email from Ingrid Bentsen Background to the issue

The State Government is proposing budget to Mental Health of between 10-15%

Where people can find a petition to sign

Copy of petition attached, When completed, they need to be returned to PO box  3167 Carlisle South WA 6101on or before 12th October OR BRING THEM TO THE RALLY

3. And about the Parliament house action

ALL interested parties Consumers carers providers encouraged to attend the official hand over of the petition at

Parliament house MIDDAY 14th October.

No permits for a march have been applied for however the gathering of a large number of people at Parliament house along with media coverage should send the message loud and clear.

The intention is to show the state government we are not invisible we will not be treated like the poor cousin regarding adequate funding and we will be a strong voice for those who have none!

The media will be there and some placards available hopefully making it easier to get our message out:

INCREASE FUNDING TO MENTAL HEALTH.

REJECT PROPOSED CUTS

Click blue link for mp3 audio of Greens MLC Alison Xamon on a tragic Mental Health week in Perth

PETITION OPPOSING THE PROPOSED FUNDING CUTS TO MENTAL HEALTH SERVICES

TO THE HONOURABLE THE SPEAKER AND MEMBERS OF THE LEGISLATIVE ASSEMBLY OF THE PARLIAMENT OF WESTERN AUSTRALIA IN PARLIAMENT ASSEMBLED.

We, the undersigned, are concerned about the effect that any proposed funding cuts will have on consumers of the mental health services, their carers, families, members of the community, as well as the providers of mental health services in Western Australia

Of major concern are any cuts in relation to the much needed recovery programs, which are known to prevent re hospitalisation.

We are also concerned of the affect any proposed cuts would have on service providers, many of whom are already under funded and understaffed

We urge the State Government to oppose any such proposal and ensure that those involved in mental health will not have their health and lifestyles compromised

Secondly, we strongly urge the Legislative Assembly propose an increase in funding to raise staffing levels to a safe and effective standard

We now ask that the Legislative Assembly take every appropriate action to ensure the above.

NAME

ADDRESS

SIGNATURE

Please clearly mark envelope petition and return to Sound Psychiatric Information Network C/O

P/O Box 3167 Carlisle SOUTH WA 6101


West Australian Government “celebrates” Mental Health week with demands for spending cuts totalling 13%

Mental Health services told to cut budgets by a total of 13 %

Media Release Tuesday October 6th – Day 2 of Mental Health Week

The Barnett Government calls on Mental Health Services to cut spending by 13 per cent.

Mental Health Week

Greens Mental Health Spokesperson Alison Xamon ( MLC for East Metro http://alisonxamon.org.au ) has exposed a tragic travesty on day two of “Mental Health Week” in W.A. where Treasurer Troy Buswell is not just applying the 3% spending cut imposed across all sectors, but cutting even more deeply into MH services.

Mental Health Week

Private and public service providers as well as NGOs and consumer groups say the extra 10 per cent is due to an overspend by the “General” Health Department.

Mental Health Week

They are reluctant to speak to the media because history shows time and again that Government employees who blow the whistle are punished ,while overstretched community groups stand to lose the meagre funding they receive while delivering life and death, front-line services.

Mental Health Week

It appears the Mental Health sector is being punished for the alleged “sins” of General Health, but so far there’s no word from Colin Barnett’s Government explaining why the demandss are being made and why it’s being done without the community being informed.

Mental Health Week WEAK

One of WA’s leading advocates, Margaret Cook had this to say about the shameful revelations;

” This is a travesty!!! We have for too long put up with this kind of cut backs and treatment of the mental health services while the community has no idea what is really happening.

Mental Health Week WEAK



Due to people with mental illness remaining the shameful silent voices. It is time we remain silent no more it is not only we who are experiencing these cutbacks but the whole community.

Mental Health Week WEAK

Staff also they have jobs and family to support also and love their jobs some whom have been in them many years and dedicated their lives to them.

There are many others our children services mental health services have had drastic cuts, and don’t believe that will not impact future generations it will.

Mental Health Week WEAK

We see this daily our children being exposed to troubled parents who are traumatised by serving overseas in wars created by Zealots who our governments think they can end  century old persuasion.

Mental Health Week WEAK

This is but just one example of a government policy that ends up as a useless costly long term problem that Governments on both sides of politics have created.

Cheers Margaret Margaret Cook Mental Health Consumer Advocate/Educator

To Know The Road Ahead Ask Those Coming Back

COMIC WA Convenor Children of Mentally Ill Consumers   ”

Listen to some of the news grabs from Greens MLC Alison XAMON

Alison Xamon MH frontline services mp3

Alison Xamon MH reconsider mp3

Alison Xamon MH kicking the needymp3

Alison Xamon MH no fat to cutmp3

Alison Xamon MH critical servicemp3

Alison Xamon MH call to actionmp3

Australia NW Oil Spill, company links to Burma’s military dictatorship? Are we financing the Generals as we pick up the bill for their mess? OP/ED

Atlas West Oil Rig – we know where the oil-spill is going,

West Atlas Oil Spill 1
West Atlas Oil Spill 1

what about where the profits are going.

Are we helping finance repression in Burma - Myanmar?
Are we helping finance repression in Burma - Myanmar?

The 2007 AP, SMH & Rigzone articles below pose some very disturbing questions about where the profits go from the badly leaking West Atlas Oil Rig.

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Is it possible that our Governments are indirectly financing the illegal Military Junta in Burma/Myanmar and it’s brutal repression.

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Aren’t we meant to be backing UN sanctions against the Generals’ brutal repression and imprisonment of elected leader Aung Saan Suu Kyi?

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Meanwhile we can only wonder at the standards of corporate governance of the operators as “their” oil covers our NW waters, threatening island, reef and mainland ecosystems.

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Excerpts and links to media exposing Burma links are below, including related interview & video from Senator Rachel Siewert.

Click the blue text to see the full story on each

A search of the website Rigzone shows these recent links between the WA Rig’s operator PTTEP and the Generals

PTTEP & CNOOC Ink Asset Swap Deal
NEWS ARTICLE: of the Union of Myanmar. Under the agreement, the partners comprise PTTEP Myanmar
Limited, a subsidiary of PTTEP with 20% interest. CNOOC Ltd. as the operator
PTTEP, CNOOC May Discuss Myanmar Gas Block Stake Swap
NEWS ARTICLE: 24 hours with China National Offshore Oil Corp. about closer business ties that could
include swapping assets in Myanmar, PTTEP’s top executive said Thursday.
PTTEP May Invest $25 Million in Myanmar Gas Fields
NEWS ARTICLE: Title: PTTEP May Invest $25 Million in Myanmar Gas Fields Date: 8/3/2004 Body: Thailand’s
PTT Exploration and Production PCL may invest $25 million to explore

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This  2007 AP article from the Star Via AP spells out the economic and political significance of the links

RANGOON’S CORPORATE FRIENDS

TheStar.com | Business | Oil companies fuelling Burma’s junta

Foreign firms are fighting for access to untapped energy reserves that some say fund a repressive regime Oct 02, 2007 04:30 AM Thomas Hogue ASSOCIATED PRESS

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From the Sydney Morning Herald, also in 2007 ( how has the structure changed we wonder )

While Burma’s military junta cracks down on pro-democracy protests, oil companies are busy jostling for access to the country’s largely untapped natural gas and oil fields.

Just last Sunday – as marches led by Buddhist monks drew thousands in the country’s biggest cities – Indian Oil Minister Murli Deora was in Burma’s capital Rangoon for the signing of contracts between state-controlled ONGC Videsh Ltd and Burma’s military rulers to explore three offshore blocks.

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Meanwhile, the Governments of Kevin Rudd and Colin Barnett are yet to answer key questions on the lamentable response to the oil disaster by it’s operators, let alone address the issue of profits possibly going to the Generals.

See the link below for the 6PR interview, pictures of the spill taken by the Greens and an interview with Senator Rachel Siewert

Youtube slideshow of the oil slick – also, Kevin Rudd doesn’t even use the word “environment”in his brief spin on air at 6PR with Simon Beaumont (6pr.com.au )

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Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd ignores NW environment as he spins a major oil slick threatening offshore and manland ecosystems :(

Kevin Rudd escaped a grilling when interviewed on 6pr.com.au about the giant oil spill off our NW coast.

Clicke here for 3 minutes of shameful spin (what about the whales & turtles Kev, they don’t vote, but we do!)  PM Kevin Rudd

There is a major threat to our offshore and mainland ecosystems, whales, turtles, sensitive reefs, and no word on why the company involved has rejected offers of clean-up help from Woodside.  see interview with Greens (WA) Sen. Rachel Siewert who’s just back from overflying the huge slick.

call your local talkback to have your say +61 8 922 11882 is 6pr.com.au

visit Senator Siewert’s site to keep track, this oil will keep spilling for the next 2 months!

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Sacred Indigenous Art still under threat in Western Australia, join FARA to help save sacred Aboriginal Rock Carvings on the Burrup Peninsula

Latest news

Hi everyone,

After a very successful 3rd Heritage Tour to the Burrup in July this year, we are pleased to announce that the waiting list is now open for the 4th Tour in July 2010 (dates tbc) – so if you know of anyone who might be interested, please email Judith Hugo on tour@fara.com.au. We already have many interested!

In the meantime we have these forthcoming events –


Zig-Zag Walk, Gooseberry HillSunday 4 October 2009

Walking the Zig Zag in the Shire of Kalamunda is a lovely community event when all the world and his wife, children, grandchildren and others are transported to the top of the zig zag by shuttle bus. They then walk down enjoying the spectacular views while being entertained by music and various community groups, sausage sizzles etc. At the bottom of the Scenic Drive, more buses will take people back up to the top again.

This year FARA has been invited to attend and will have a stand to inform the public about Burrup issues. We are looking for volunteers to help us spread the word – another opportunity to wear your Burrup t-shirt and do a fun Stand Up for the Burrup!

If you are interested, please contact Ginie Bristowe at 9271 7263 or 0422 487 419 or sweetginie@hotmail.com with heading Zig Zag.

See website for more information.
Event location: Zig Zag Scenic Drive, Gooseberry Hill,


FARA AGM – Tuesday 27 October 2009. 6.30pm
41 Havelock Street, West Perth

We have a great new bunch of members from our last Burrup trip, but this is a reminder that old memberships are now due for renewal…

This may be done by sending a cheque or money order to Jennifer Laker at 5710 Phillips Rd, Mundaring WA 6072 or by direct deposit to our bank account – Bendigo Bank, Mundaring – BSB 633 000, A/c No. 1297 11149 > Friends of Australian Rock Art. (Don’t forget to add your own name!)
Membership fees:
$20 – waged,
$10 – low waged,
$5 – unwaged,
or there’s always the option of $200 – life membership!

Please attend the Annual General Meeting on Tuesday 27th October 2009 at 6.30pm. Come along (to Robin Chapple’s new parliamentary offices 41 Havelock Street, West Perth) to meet old and new friends – and hear the latest low-down on the Burrup!

(Robert Bednarik’s book “Australian Apocalypse’ will also be available @$25)


Lynne Tinley’s exhibition closing – Sunday 8 November, 3-5 pm
Kingfisher Gallery, 49 Colin Street, West Perth

Lynne Tinley, well known WA artist and staunch supporter of our Burrup cause, has kindly offered part proceeds from her exhibition to FARA. Her stunning works combine images from her South African roots with those from her adopted Australian homeland.

This will be a wine & cheese event @$20 – bookings to Judith Hugo at jhugo@iinet.net.au


And did you know?

– We are always keen to hear your ideas about possible fundraising events or Stand Ups –
contact@fara.com.au

– FARA meets every second Tuesday
Friends of Australian Rock Art meets every second Tuesday from 5.45pm to 8pm at 41 Havelock Street, West Perth. The committee welcomes anyone to attend the meeting and bring forward their ideas and/or contributions. Here is the list of scheduled meetings for the next 2 months:

Tuesday 1st September Committee meeting
Tuesday 15th September Committee meeting
Tuesday 29th September Committee meeting
Tuesday 13th October Committee meeting
Tuesday 27th October Annual General Meeting

FARA would be grateful if you could circulate this email to your network.

29/08/2009

Kind regards
Judith, Remi
For Friends of Australian Rock Art

Friends of Australian Rock Art Inc.
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WA Premier Colin Barnett appears to say – I’m a nice bloke here’s 44 cents for you

I’m a nice bloke here’s 44 cents for you

The LHMU is working hard to secure better pay and conditions for more than 10,000 education assistants, school cleaners and gardeners in Western Australia’s public schools, because kids can’t learn without us.


LHMU, the Miscos


Education assistants perform a range of roles in Western Australian classrooms, including working with children with severe physical and intellectual disabilities and behavioural problems.

LHMU, the Miscos


School cleaners and gardeners perform important roles every day, keeping the places where children learn, exercise and play both clean and safe.

LHMU, the Miscos


Colin Barnett and the State Government want us to accept a 2.5 per cent pay rise this year. That’s just 44 cents an hour. How is that fair when they have put up water by 10 per cent, gas by 23 per cent and electricity by 25 per cent?

LHMU, the Miscos


At $35k per year, we are already some of your lowest paid employees and we deserve a fair deal. Kids can’t learn without us.

LHMU, the Miscos


Please visit http://www.kidscantlearnwithoutus.org.au/ and support the people who keep our schools open

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Major Oil Spill off NW Australia – pics and interview with Senator Rachel Siewert on her overflight of the West Atlas disaster

The Australian Greens today released pictures taken yesterday of the West Atlas Oil Spill indicating the extent to which the oil had spread from the oil rig, and called on the Government to intervene in a situation that is clearly worse than originally reported.

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“This spill is far more serious than both the company and the Government are saying. We were not prepared for the extent of what we saw,” said Senator Rachel Siewert, marine spokesperson for the Australian Greens.

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“The Government must urgently intervene, to stand up to the oil company and start immediate action to protect these precious waters and the whale, turtle, fish and other species that call them home.”

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The ABC is reporting here that Minister Ferguson says everything’s fine!!!

Well, if you stand on one leg and face NNE it DOES look smaller, but for the marine life it’s very very big and very very close

The Senator’s site will be updated with video and pecise co-ordinates of the oveflight soon, please visit and bookmark, share

West Atlas Oil Spill 1

Mental Health Forum in Perth Tuesday September 29 on plans for the coming decade – be part of the change in Western Australia September

Thank you to all the West Australians who took part in recent workshops hosted by Price Waterhouse Cooper to inform the powers that be about the urgent need for change in practice and process.

Out of Darkness

Join those steering the information process on Tuesday September 29 to hear about what happens from here. Please see the brochure below this post for details of the forum and share with your contacts.


The recent confirmation of Australia‘s suicide rate as not falling in ten years clearly shows that Governments and Service Providers have failed tragically.

Out of Darkness

No group has been failed more miserably than the First Australians, city or regional, who are suffering and dying at rates that higher than many third world countries ( don’t get me started on how little impact the Government and resource industry’s meagre efforts have had on their welfare despite making Billions from sacred land )

The deadly toll of stigma, misdiagnosis, over-drugging, ignorance,vested interests and plain inertia can’t even be measured because of the failed unwritten media rule of not reporting on suicide ( except if it’s a ratings boosting celebrity suicide )

The silence is deadly, and even offensive, as the media still gives oxygen to suicide kits and tragically wrong advice from the man known as Dr Death – under the guise of “covering” the Euthenasia debate.

Out of Darkness

A Perth woman with mental illness died horribly in Mexico after following his advice on “dignified death”, leaving her young children orphaned and a hole in the hearts of her family and community, including her since departed sister who was a dear friend of mine and the 6PR Perth radio talkback family.

Click Pic for Perthnow.com.au story

*Vale Carina Berg from the Overnight family

Click Pic for Perthnow.com.au story

Further on media, in a bitter irony a few years ago, when Dr Geoff Gallop was Premier we held a rally on the steps of Parliament to raise awareness of suicide in W.A. and lobby for funding for the life saving Lifeline counseling service.

Geoffrey Gallop Premier of Western Australia (...
Dr Geoff Gallop

About 20 MP’s joined Lifeline crew, broken hearted mothers and grieving, confused familes and advocates in a far too small gathering…there was no sign of mainstream media despite the alerts.

Then as if the clouds had parted to reveal the warming sun, the TV crews pulled in, one after the other in front of us…

The first and then the second “dismounted” with all their cammos and makeup… and walked straight past us!

I walked up to the next broadcast sationwagon to arrive and asked a young reporter I had mentored for a while years back where they were going.

He told me the then captain of Fremantle Dockers had made some politicially sensitive sports comment earlier in the day and they were there to catch Peter Bell after his confab with Premier Geoff Gallop, whose retirement due to Clinical Depression was a long way off.

Out of Darkness

Dr Gallop came to visit me at my home after his resignation and we spoke about our experiences and what had worked for one or the other – I never had the heart to tell him what happened that day – he didn’t need to know, not then. I doubt his minders even gave the notices of the Rally a second look, let alone put them in front of their embattled boss.I’ve lost too many friends and colleagues to mental illness to just hope for change, three haunt me still, but I’ll tell you about them another time.

Out of Darkness

For now, please speak up to whomever might listen about the tragic and AVOIDABLE toll of death and suffering from mental illness.

Effective and meaningful change will not come without major campaigns of public and professional education, guided by those of us the system calls “mental health consumers” and a policy enunciated by my heroes Margaret Cook, her sister Pauline and Lyn Mahboub – nothing about us without us.

Out of Darkness

There is much we can do to bring the taboo issue of suicide to the wider community in a way that won’t freak them out.

An example is the “Out of Darkness” overnight walks to fight suicide in the US. I’ve been privileged to work with the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention on the Chicago walk, where my dear friend and fellow traveller Amy Kiel lit the way down the rocky path for those who follow. Amy is now working on the coming Walk in her home town of Kansas City and you can follow her on twitter @abeeliever to find out more.

The AFSP and Amy are keen to help us set up walks and programmes here in Oz, so, intersted parties please contact via the comments link below.

Out of Darkness

There are many groups and individuals doing life saving and affirming work in Western Australia, most are working with their hands tied behind their back because of a lack of Government and Community support ( there are no smiling kiddies to put in front of cameras to represent those battling brain dis-ease.

I’ll end this missive with the promise of more to come and 3 important links that shed light for us all, 2 focus some very dark places through fact or fiction, and one is a local inititiative of the dedicated team at RUAH Outreach that I was privileged to be a small part of.

1 – Please see Family to Family by RUAH -” telling it like it”   is by clicking this link

Out of Darkness

2 and 3    Click here for an extended trailer of the Documentary that showed at a Sydney Festival over the weekend an is available online , and a brilliant work of fiction where diligent research underpins a story of madness and love spanning  centuries – and an interview with the producer and author.

Out of Darkness

and to end for now -Here are most of the Mental health stories I’ve posted, including a well recieved talk with UK Dr Alun Jones and interviews with Inspirational Amy Kiel.

Out of Darkness

***         PLEASE SHARE THIS WITH ALL W.A. CONTACTS AS THERE DOESN’T SEEM TO BE        ANY MENTION ON THE GOVT HEALTH WEBSITE YET            ***

please share this, there appears to be no info on the Govt Health website or in media releases

please share this, there appears to be no info on the Govt Health website or in media releases


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Greens call for environmental repair fund in wake of West Australian oil spill

Senator Rachel Siewert

Australian Greens Senator for Western Australia

w:en:Rachel Siewert, 22 August 2007 Author: Ja...

Sunday 23rd August 2009

Greens call for environmental repair fund in wake of WA oil spill

The Australian Greens today called for more information to be made available about the oil spill off the coast of Western Australia, and for the company responsible to set up an environmental fund to monitor and repair any environmental impacts the spill may have caused.


“The company needs to be more forthcoming with information,” Australian Greens marine spokesperson Senator Rachel Siewert said today.


“We have limited information on what is currently occurring out there, what actually happened out there, how did it happen, or when they expect to get it under control.”


“This area has been dubbed a ‘marine superhighway’. There are populations of baby turtles this time of year, and the area also serves as a migratory route for whales and other marine life. It’s also close to Ashmore Reef, so we need to be certain the spill is contained before any further damage is done.”


“We are deeply concerned that it has taken so long for clean-up operations to begin and we don’t know what the long-term impacts are going to be. We believe a fund needs to be set up by the company to fund ongoing monitoring and any further repair needed in the future.”


“Before any further development is undertaken closer to the Kimberley coast, we need to ensure that emergency response teams are situated closer than Victoria or the WA wheatbelt, as this instance has shown that the increased response time could potentially result in further environmental damage,” said Senator Siewert.


“I am also concerned by comments from Resources Minister Martin Ferguson over this spill where he is playing down the potential environmental impacts – we do not yet know if the environment is at risk. He is clearly demonstrating that resources come before the environment.”


The Greens are calling on PTTEP Australasia to set up a fund to monitor damage and repair the environment.


“We also need better processes than this, to ensure quick response times and adequate safeguards to protect the environment,” she concluded.

For more information or media enquiries please call Tim Norton on 0418 401 180

Tim Norton
Communications and Campaigns
Office of Rachel Siewert | Australian Greens Senator for Western Australia
Suite SG-113 Parliament House, Canberra ACT | P: 02 6277 3741 | F: 02 6277 5762

Tim.Norton@aph.gov.au |
www.RachelSiewert.org.au | www.GreensMPs.org.au

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posted by tony serve in support of those working to save our environment

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tony serve blogs Big Pharma’s huge profits from human suffering features in brilliant doco and awesome new novel, listen to Producer Kevin Miller and author Pamela Glasner

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West Australian mining deal with China exposes Ex-Rocker’s KOW-TOW- Gorgon announcement relegates Garrett to ‘rubber stamp’ status

Senator Rachel Siewert Australian Greens Senator  WA


w:en:Rachel Siewert, 22 August 2007 Author: Ja...
Image via Wikipedia

Gorgon announcement relegates Peter Garrett to ‘rubber stamp’ status

The Australian Greens today called on the Rudd Government to explain how it can announce its endorsement of a $50 Billion gas deal with China before the Gorgon project had received Commonwealth environmental approval.

“The message to us seems clear – threatened species will not be allowed to get in the way of development under Rudd, and environmental conditions are nothing more than a means of green-washing projects destined to go ahead regardless of their environmental impacts,” said Senator Rachel Siewert today.

“Today, the role of the Environment Minister has been relegated to the status of a rubber stamp of approval.”

Barrow Island has been dubbed ‘Australia‘s Ark’ for its unique range of endangered species, with 24 species and sub-species preserved on the island, many of who are extinct or endangered on mainland Australia.”

Peter Garrett campaigning in Melbourne for the...
Image via Wikipedia

“Endemic species such as the Barrow Island spectacled hare-wallaby, Barrow Island golden bandicoot, Barrow Island mouse and the Barrow Island burrowing bettong will face possible extinction if proper environmental restrictions and controls are not put in place,” said Senator Siewert.

“There is also the carbon footprint of this plant to consider. Gorgon’s gas has a high CO2 content, meaning its emissions will be at least 5.45 million tonnes-a-year if carbon geo-sequestration can be achieved (and 8.81 million tonnes-a-year without it).”

“This is a time when we should be actively reducing emissions,” concluded Senator Siewert.

The Greens are calling on the Prime Minister to explain whether he still considers that the Gorgon plant will only be able to proceed subject to environmental approval, or whether he now believes his Government should not be bound by the provisions of the Environmental Protection and Biodiver

Australian Greens
Image via Wikipedia

sity Conservation Act to reject the project if it fails to secure approval.

Tim Norton
Communications and Campaigns
Office of Rachel Siewert | Australian Greens Senator for Western Australia
Suite SG-113 Parliament House, Canberra ACT | P: 02 6277 3741 | F: 02 6277 5762

Tim.Norton@aph.gov.au |
www.RachelSiewert.org.au | www.GreensMPs.org.au

posted here by tony serve in support of the Greens’ ongoing efforts to hold Govt & Big Business accountable

Skype: perthtones Google Talk: serve.tony@gmail.com
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Barnett Government rules out lead safety option despite the lessons of the deadly Esperance contamination

MINISTER REFUSES TO HEAR SAFE LEAD OPTION FOR WESTERN AUSTRALIA

Greens MP Adele Carles says she is shocked that the Minister for Environment has rushed through Magellan’s approval today, when the Minister knew full well that a large public company, Griffin Mining Ltd was offering to get involved in an alternative means of transporting lead that is more consistent with public health and safety.


“The Minister has rushed this approval through, before Griffin could get a fair hearing. Griffin went on the public record 2 weeks ago when it said on ABC TV that it would be financially viable for a refinery in Wiluna to be built to enable the export of lead blocks.”

“This would remove the risk posed by the release of lead carbonate dust.”

“This is what Magellan initially received approval for several years ago a

Australian Greens
Image via Wikipedia

nd this is exactly what the Minister should be requiring Magellan to do now, given that the health of potentially thousands of residents is at stake” says Ms Carles.

“Magellan has a shocking history, it contaminated Esperance with the same product. It should not be given a second chance.”

“Given the bullying tactics we have witnessed this week with Irvernia threatening Griffin for daring to offer us a safe option, we dread seeing how this is going to play out in Fremantle.”

blogged in the interests of a safe environment by
tony serve

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tony serve blogs West Australian Government continues plans to sell off the farm to a mining industry dominated by greed and exploitation – Greens (WA) alarmed at Dracula getting keys to the blood bank!
@ WiseStamp Signature. Get it now

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West Australian Government continues plans to sell off the farm to a mining industry dominated by greed and exploitation – Greens (WA) alarmed at Dracula getting keys to the blood bank!

The West Australian Government continues plans to sell off the farm to a mining industry dominated by greed and exploitation

The Government of Colin Barnett has again moved to bypass or neutralize checks and balances on the rapacious mining industry. ( search Barnett/Moore on this site for related articles )
The tragedy is that mainstream ( corporate interests ) media reports are full of stories of approval delays and bureaucracy in W.A. allowing the Barnett Government to claim they “have to act”

Meanwhile our environment and world heritage are being scarred and decades of mining and Government promises of improving life for traditional landowners are a tragic joke…the life expectancy for a male aborigine is 37.

Iron hydroxide precipitate stains a stream rec...
Image via Wikipedia

The answer to delays in approvals is not to remove the much needed scrutiny, but to spend a tiny bit of the billions in mining royalties on properly resourcing a totally independent review process.

What are you afraid of Mr Barnett – accountability on both bureau management and sustainability?
tony serve

Skype: perthtones Google Talk: serve.tony@gmail.com


Media statement from  Robin Chapple MLC

for the Mining and Pastoral Region

13 August 2009

Norman Moore’s environmental reforms will put Dracula in charge of the blood bank, say Greens.

Norman Moore has proven himself an enemy of environmental accountability

, Greens (WA) MLC Robin Chapple said today.

“Mr. Moore’s industry-backed working group is seeking to reverse three decades of progress in environmental protection measures.” Mr Chapple said.

“This is completely unacceptable for a State which was one of the first places in the world to introduce an environmental protection agency.”

Mr. Chapple was commenting on the Jones Report released by Mr. Moore’s Industry Working Group yesterday.

He said that while he recognised the need for reform of the current approvals process, the diluting of environmental assessment was a retrograde step.

“Some of the report’s recommendations – namely the stripping of the EPA’s environmental impact assessment powers – make for frightening reading.”

“Handing environmental assessment powers to the Minister for Mines and Petroleum is like sending Kim Jong Il to inspect his own nuclear arsenal.”

The WA community and many miners want stronger, not weaker environmental protection measures, Mr. Chapple said.

“I welcome any move to grant the EPA departmental status, but without approvals power over mining proposals it will be a hollow department indeed.”

“What Western Australians deserve is an authority that delivers strong environmental protection and allows the mining sector to know where it stands regarding its environmental obligations.”

“These recommendations do neither.  They weaken environmental accountability and do nothing to sort out the under-resourced, confused approvals process.”

Australian Greens
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Australia’s “Pyramids” need protection – Greens urge State Government to nominate Burrup for the World Heritage List

Robin Chapple MLC For the Mining and Pastoral Region
MEDIA RELEASE Wednesday, 12 August 2009

Greens urge State Government to nominate Burrup for the World Heritage List

rock-art-large-bird

These carvings from Ancient times must be protected

Greens MP for the Mining and Pastoral region Robin ChappleDampier Archipelago for inclusion in the World Heritage List. MLC introduced a motion into parliament yesterday urging the Barnett government to finally nominate the

“The ancient Aboriginal rock art on the Burrup Peninsula makes the Dampier Archipelago one of the most important heritage sites in Western Australia, if not the world.”

“There are thousands of carvings there that date back to the ice age. This makes the Dampier Archipelago a place of immense cultural and historical significance.”

“The fact that it is not already on the World Heritage List is a disgrace.”

“Thankfully Colin Barnett has spoken out on many occasions about the importance of protecting the rock art on the Dampier Archipelago.” Mr Chapple said.

“We trust that Mr Barnett will make good on those words and finally move to protect this incredibly significant heritage site.”

“Already a number of the carvings have been stolen or damaged. This represents a tremendous loss on a global level.”

“To fail to take action, when we know full well the importance of this place, would be a tragedy of epic proportions.”

For more information please contact Robin Chapple MLC on 0409 379 263.

See below for;

Barnett to be sworn in as 29th Premier.
Image by publik16 via Flickr

Colin Barnett quotes on Burrup rock art and the World Heritage List

· 22.08.08, 720 morning radio: “…preserving and protecting the ancient rock art on the Burrup Peninsula. It’s an important issue, probably the most important heritage site in Australia. I took that up in Opposition.”

· 31.05.07, The West: “World heritage listing is inevitable. But you would not think we are some struggling third world country which needs to be dictated to as to how it deals with its heritage. The status of the rock art, (makes it) in my opinion, without doubt the most important heritage site in WA and possibly the nation. It is up there with Uluru.”

· 31.05.07, GWN TV news: “You’ve got to question the [Liberal] Federal Government when they have a process of saying ‘well, we will list it, but we won’t list it until after the site has been cleared for the Pluto project’. I mean how third world is that?”

· 22.12.06, 720 morning radio: “Sadly, it appears to me that neither a Federal Liberal Government nor State Labor Government is prepared to make the decisions to protect this rock art. And it’s not rocket science, there are a number of commonsense things that should be done to make sure that we accept our responsibility, a world responsibility, and that’s to protect the most unique and largest collection of rock art in the world.”

· 22.12.06, 720 morning radio: “The Australian and state governments would need to go down that path [of a world heritage listing], and sooner or later that will happen.”

· 28.11.06, 720 morning radio: “It’s inevitable … absolutely inevitable that the rock art on the Burrup Peninsula will not only receive national heritage listing, it will probably get world heritage listing before too long.”

· 28.11.06, 720 morning radio: “The rock art that has been lost, and it’s happened over the last 25 years or so, has been lost because of the physical destruction, the clearing of sites. And we have a responsibility, it seems to me, in the 21st century, as a first world economy, to make sure that we do get the benefits of the development of the gas resource, but we also have a wider responsibility to protect this ancient rock art. It is of immense international significance.”

· 25.06.06, 60 Minutes TV: “People are trying to pretend that the rock art isn’t there. What I’m saying is ‘this is of world significance’.”

· 01.05.06, 6PR afternoons: “The rock carvings on the Burrup Peninsula are anywhere from probably 8,000 to 15,000 years old. They’re two to three times the age of the pyramids. It is the largest collection, if you like, of rock art anywhere in the world. There’s at least 300,000 carvings. And without doubt, it is Australia’s greatest heritage asset, it is of world significance.”

* posted by tony serve in support of efforts to save world heritage

Colin Barnett has made it clear he will try to protect the Burrup and its unique physical and spiritual assets.

But as we saw at the movies – “there is no try – do, or don’t do!” tony serve

Skype: perthtones Google Talk: serve.tony@gmail.com

It’s time to DO Mr Barnett.

[ burrup,world heritage, environment, mining, rock art ]

image001

2009-08-11 Media Rlease re Burrup World Heritage Motion.docx

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Gorgon’s dirty secret: Western Australia’s biggest single polluter?

Barrow Island Wiki pic
Barrow Island Wiki pic

Senator Rachel Siewert

Gorgon’s dirty secret: WA’s biggest

single polluter?  Bye Bye Barrow Is.

MEDIA RELEASE, Tuesday 11 August 2009

The Gorgon LNG proposal for Barrow Island, if it goes ahead, will massively increase WA’s greenhouse gas emissions, representing a disastrous decision for the climate, Greens Senator for WA Rachel Siewert has warned.

“While the old parties in Canberra this week are debating various flawed forms of an emissions trading scheme – all aimed at donating billions of dollars to the nation’s biggest polluters to compensate them for the cost of the pollution they are causing – the State Government is quietly progressing a project that will single-handedly boost WA’s greenhouse gas emissions by between eight to 12 per cent,” Senator Siewert said.

“Gorgon’s emissions will be 5.45 million tonnes-a-year if carbon geo-sequestration is achieved and 8.81 million tonnes-a-year without the greenhouse gas sequestered.

“This represents either an eight or 12 per cent increase on the State’s total annual carbon footprint now.

“Meanwhile, there are plans to more than double the number of coal-fired power stations in Collie from four to nine by 2013, plus allow the highly polluting Perdaman urea plant.

“If the WA and Federal governments are relying on public apathy to get away with taking us down the opposite path that we need to go on climate change, then they are wrong.

“This issue was a vote-decider at the last Federal election and we saw it again with the Fremantle by-election. People care about climate change and they can see that neither the Liberal nor the Labor party are showing leadership on this issue.”

For more information or media inquiries, please call Eloise Dortch on 0415 507 763

w:en:Rachel Siewert, 22 August 2007 Author: Ja...
Image via Wikipedia


BACKGROUND:

Even with carbon geosequestration, Gorgon proponents plan to add 5.45million tonnes of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere annually: (ref: page 30, http://www.epa.wa.gov.au/docs/2937_Rep1323GorgonRevPer30409.pdf).

The amount Gorgon proponents Chevron, Shell and Exxon Mobile plan to geo-sequester from the expanded, three-LNG train proposal is 3.36 million tonnes annually (ref: page 31 http://www.gorgon.com.au/review/FromClient/Gorgon_Revised_Proposal_PER_Final_Main_Report_20080909.pdf. To quote: “The addition of a third LNG processing train and a Domestic Gas supply will potentially increase the annual volume of reservoir CO2 to be injected from approximately 2.72 MTPA as a result of the Approved Development, to a total of approximately

3.36 MTPA (Table 2.2) as a result of the Revised Proposal.”

This compares to WA’s total annual CO2 emissions of 70.4mtpa (ref: http://www.climatechange.gov.au/inventory/stateinv/index.html)

· 5.45mtpa therefore represents an eight per cent increase on WA’s current annual greenhouse gas emissions (assuming carbon geo-sequestration is achieved)

· If carbon sequestration is not achieved, annual greenhouse emission from Gorgon will be 8.81mtpa (5.45mtpa + 3.36mtpa), equivalent to a 12.5 per cent increase on WA’s current annual emissions.

posted in support of those working to protect the environment by tony serve

Skype: perthtones Google Talk: serve.tony@gmail.com
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tony serve blogs Really useful info for west australians from WACOSS – WACOSS Update – 7th August

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Proposed BHP Billiton Olympic Dam Uranium Mine Expansion opposed on a series of logical, economic, environmental and ethical points – former Senator Jo Valentine’s letter to the”authorities”

The letter below is from the Chair of the Anti Nuclear Alliance of Western Australia, former Senaor Jo Vallentine.

There are details here that Government and the mining/uranium industry have yet to address, read on and ask your own questions of those in charge of our future.

The Manager

Assessment Branch,

Department of Planning and Local Government,

GPO Box 1815, Adelaide, SA 5001.

Re: Proposed BHP Billiton Olympic Dam Uranium Mine Expansion

Dear Manager,

On behalf of the Anti-Nuclear Alliance of Western Australia, I make this submission: there should be no expansion of the uranium mining operations of BHP Billiton at Olympic Dam.

Our organization, working to challenge the nuclear industry in all its forms, has been operating since 1997. We are comprised of twelve determined community based, not-for-profit groups.

There are four parts to my argument:

  1. Warming

  2. Waste

  3. Water

  4. Weapons

1. WARMING: Since around 2003 -4 the global nuclear industry has positioned itself as part of the solution to climate change. In what has been an unprecedented attempt to fool governments and the public about its merits, and to minimise its dangers, the nuclear industry has been cavalier with the truth, to say the very least.

It claims that it is greenhouse friendly, and therefore should be a sought-after energy source for the future. The only part of the nuclear industry’s operations which is not a heavy greenhouse gas emitter is the boiling of the water in the reactor. At every other stage in the chain, from uranium mining, to milling, to transport, to enrichment, to construction of reactors, to re-processing, to storage of waste (probably requiring more transport), to making of weapons, to de-commissioning of reactors, greenhouse gases are emitted. Just take the reactor construction and deconstruction as an example of what is never referred to by the industry’s proponents. The making of cement is widely acknowledged as a huge contributor to CO2 emissions, and there is a massive amount of cement used in both operations ….. especially in de-commissioning of ageing reactors, which will become a common, but likely unacknowledged feature of the industry in the coming decade. So, concrete and steel manufacturing emissions should be included in any assessment of the carbon footprint of this industry.

Likewise, transport components are also huge …… uranium ore to ports, across the seas to clients, to enrichment, then reactor plants and so on. Going one step further back …… consider the diesel used in the gigantic trucks and other machinery required to dig the rocks out of the ground, and to mill those large pieces into powder. Most of the fuels used to generate nuclear power in all its stages, comes from the consumption of fossil fuels. Why are those greenhouse (and monetary costs) not accounted for in either the greenhouse or financial costs of nuclear power production? (Ref.: Jan Storm van Leeuwen and Philip Smith, “Can Nuclear Power Provide Energy for the Future? Would it solve the CO2 Emission Problem? ” , October 12, 2004.)

Another component, often overlooked in this consideration of the dirty, rather than “clean” industry is the production of CFC’s in the enrichment process. Going against the trend to limit the production of chlorofluorocarbons according to the Montreal Protocol of 1987, as the U. S Department of Energy acknowledges, the nuclear industry’s enrichment plants emit most of the 114 gas still produced in the United States, which is an ozone layer destroyer (James Bruggers, “Uranium Plants Harm Ozxone Layer, Kentucky, Ohio Facilities Top List of Polluters …. The Courier Journal, May 29, 2001).

Various studies show that CO2 emissions depend on the grade or uranium ore ….. high grade ore, requiring less energy input than low grade ore. In most cases a nuclear power station must operate for three years to generate the amount of energy it costs to install and get the reactor operating (by comparison, wind power requires only about six months of generation of energy, in order to “pay” for its installation in energy terms(Danish wind Industry Association 1997 “The Energy Balance of Wind turbines).

However, with low-grade ore, containing less than 0.01% yellowcake, at least 10 tonnes of ore has to be mined in order to obtain 1 kg. of yellowcake, entailing a huge increase in the fossil energy required for mining and milling. Consumption of fossil fuels then becomes so large that nuclear energy emits total quantities of CO2 comparable with those from an equivalent combined cycle gas-fired power station (van Leewen & Smith, 2005 “Can nuclear power provide energy for the future; would it solve the CO2 emission problem?”)

The vast majority of the world’s uranium reserves are low-grade. With the current contribution by nuclear energy of 16% of the world’s energy production, the high grade reserves would only last several decades if nuclear energy were to be expanded, as the industry hopes.

Far from being any part of the answer to global warming, I submit that the nuclear industry is a major contributor to greenhouse emissions. As Storm van Leewen argues: “The Nuclear Industry should commit itself to publish a thorough analysis of the emissions of carbon dioxide and all other greenhouses gases in all processes of the fuel chain before claiming that nuclear energy is carbon free or greenhouse gas free.” (J.W. Storm van Leewen. “Uranium and Greenhouse Gases” August 13, 2005, as quoted by Helen Caldicott in “Nuclear Power is Not the Answer to Global Warming or Anything Else” – Melbourne University Press, 2006)

Specific to the Olympic Dam expansion, it is incongruous for the government to allow a $350 million subsidy in diesel fuel rebates, and for the company to plan for an increase in greenhouse gas emissions from 1.2 million tones of CO2 per year, up to 5.9 million tonnes per year by 2020. This would increase South Australia’s current total emissions of 33 million tonnes a year by up to 14% by 2020, and severely compromise the potential for urgent action on deep cuts in greenhouse gas emissions overall. There is no sense in that. It is a license for the big polluters to continue with business as usual, and is totally unacceptable when communities, small businesses and households are expected to (and in most cases are keen to) reduce their emissions.

ANAWA is clear that BHP Billeton’s plans for expansion of the Olympic Dam operation should be disallowed on the grounds that there will be a significant increase in greenhouse gas emissions from the plant.

2. WASTE

The nuclear industry has had sixty four years to figure out waste disposal. It has failed, utterly and universally. This isn’t just any toxic waste disposal, which might damage waterways, or pollute the air, or contaminate the soil, although it does all of those things. This is radioactive waste with the capability of altering the gene pools of all living things on the face of the earth. It is a very serious charge: the possibility of affecting the reproductive organisms, interfering with the DNA of every facet of life on earth.

Yet this industry continues to promote itself as some sort of “saviour” when the global community is faced with the challenge of climate change. It is a big challenge, but not ne which will be assisted in any way by introducing more nuclear waste on the scene. There are already mountains of waste to be disposed of securely, safely, for the unforeseeable future. This is a shameful legacy to be leaving future generations – they will have to deal with the folly of this twentieth century failed experiment.

The problem of nuclear waste begins with the uranium mining process. Huge volumes of lower level radioactive wastes are left behind at abandoned minesites, as much as 680 parts of finely ground rock for every part uranium oxide extracted. At Ranger mine in the Northern Territory, there are constantly overflows from the tailings dams during a heavy wet season. At Olympic Dam, it’s a different problem (usually) of high winds sending the tailings blowing in the wind. The proposed expansion would add a further mountain of tailings, which could not be guaranteed against leakages, seepages, windstorms.

BHP Billiton’s proposal to spend at least five years digging the world’s largest open pit, to be 3 kms. by 3 kms. at the surface, and 350 metres deep, just to reach the ore body, will leave not only a huge hole in the ground, because there are no plans to rehabilitate, or to fill in that pit, but also, the storage proposed would cover an area of up to 44 square kms. to a height of up to 65 metres. This toxic mountain will probably leak as all tailings dams/pits do, for the duration of the open pit mine’s life, which is predicted to be until 2050. From ANAWA’s perspective, this scenario is totally unacceptable. We call on the government to reject the BHP Billiton proposal for expansion.

Because whatever happens at an Australian uranium mine is directly linked to the wider international nuclear picture, because we sell uranium to overseas clients for use in nuclear power plants, and indirectly for making bombs, and producing waste elsewhere, we make further comment on other situations regarding waste.

There have been numerous international scientific attempts to find a solution to the storage of spent fuel from reactors, like synroc, once touted as the magic answer. Still not proven. But no company, either involved in uranium mining, or nuclear power generation, or weapons production, is taking the ultimate responsibility of dealing with its contaminated waste until the radioactive e materials are no longer dangerous. This responsibility will have to be borne by governments and communities long after the companies involved now have made their profits, and cut and run.

A very serious attempt was made in the United States to establish one single waste depository for high-level waste at Yucca Mountain in Nevada. Opponents said for years that it was not a suitable site for many reasons (earthquake zone, porous rocks included). The industry persisted against the wishes of the people and against scientific data, and after twenty years and the expenditure of more than eleven billion dollars (mostly taxpayers’ dollars), President Obama has called it quits. Yucca Mountain is not going ahead. So, the United Sates nuclear industry is back to square one in its search for a suitable site, or for new technology to deal with the waste.

There is one possibly viable project underway in Olkiluto in Finalnd, where the government is paying billions of dollars constructing a deep depository to take the spent fuel rods from its four reactors. It is way behind schedule. It remains to be seen whether the technology is deemed safe for the long term (how can that be proved with material that is radioactive for 250.ooo years?) before a license would be granted for it to continue operation.

Here in Western Australia, we experienced the push from an international consortium seeking a permanent waste depository, deep underground in the desert, which was considered expendable. The Pangea company wooed the government and offered massive financial inducements. But the people sent Pangea packing, even finally gaining the support of the conservative Court Government, which passed legislation outlawing the dumping of international nuclear waste in Western Australia. That legislation still stands, and is supported by current Liberal Premier Colin Barnett, despite his enthusiasm for uranium mining. This is neither an ethical nor a consistent policy. The rationale for excluding international waste would b e a lot stronger if no uranium mining was exported from this state. This is a position towards which ANAWA continues to work.

South Australia successfully challenged Prime Minister John Howard’s plan for a national waste depository in that state. Aboriginal people and their land had already suffered contamination from British nuclear testing in the 1950’s and sixties, and they were not going to let that kind of contamination occur again. Fortunately, they were supported by the people and Government in their strong stand.

Now the Northern Territory is experiencing the pressure to make way for a national nuclear waste dump (and Australia’s stored nuclear waste is miniscule, compared with countries which have major nuclear programmes) – Labor’s promises to reverse the Howard government’s plans remain unfulfilled. A real concern is that once a national repository is confirmed, the international nuclear industry will be lining up, again (new name, same crowd, Arius?), with huge inducements for Australia to take the waste from many countries desperately trying to get rid of the material which is mounting up exponentially in all countries with nuclear power stations.

Why on earth would we want to add to that dangerous stockpile by further increasing uranium mining operations in this country?

Most of the worlds 440 plus nuclear reactors are ageing, and due for de-commissioning. The industry keeps on trying to get them re-licensed to continue for a few more years. Finally they become too radioactive to continue. The mothballing required to segregate the large buildings, requiring massive amounts of concrete, leaves monuments dotted around the countryside as testament to this failed technology.

Then there’s the question of so-called “depleted” uranium. This is highly toxic material, used by the United States military wherever it has been fighting wars, since 1990. Depleted of U235, it is still highly radioactive as U238, which is very dense – an ideal anti-tank weapon which can penetrate heavy metals, like a hot knife cutting through butter. It ignites on impact, disintegrating into a fine powder which is blown by the wind …. this radioactive mist has half-life of 4.5 billion years. The Pentagon admitted to using 360 tons of DU in the anti-tank shells in Kuwait, Iraq and Saudi Arabia in the 1991 gulf War. Probably more was used in the second Gulf War , beginning in 2003. ‘Since 1991, there has been a sevenfold increase in both childhood cancers and gross congenital abnormalities in the Basra region of Iraq’ (Helen Caldicott, “Nuclear Power is Not the Answer to Global Warming or Anything Else,” op. cit., p. 52).

It is also important to recognize the international global Nuclear Energy Program devised by President Bush, and signed on to by Prime Minister John Howard, which could be interpreted as an obligation by a uranium exporting country to accept the radioactive waste generated by its primary product overseas. This is yet to be tested.

ANAWA considers the production of more nuclear waste a gross violation of the human rights of future generations, and a gross violation of the integrity of our global environment into the unforeseeable future. This is not a right of this generation, but we have a responsibility not to add to the enormous problem which already exists, and to which there is no answer on the horizon. That argument alone, our organization to strongly resists any moves by the Government of South Australia to consider expansion of the Olympic Dam uranium mining operation.

3. WATER

In the driest state of the driest continent on earth, it is unwise, to put it mildly, to consider expanding the Olympic Dam operations. Already a huge water guzzler, taking 35 million litres of water daily from the great Artesian Basin, this is an industry out of control, and out of line with the thinking of most Australians who are increasingly realizing that water is our most precious resource, and that we shouldn’t be squandering it on any unnecessary projects. The Olympic Dam expansion is an unnecessary project. It is a gross waste of water, whether that water is sourced from the Great Artesian Basin, at considerable cost to the unique and fragile Mound Springs, listed as an endangered ecological community, or from a specially commissioned de-salination plant, 500 expensive kilometers away. The fact that the water currently taken from GAB is free of charge, adds insult to the injury of water wastage. BHP Billiton plans to increase that water usage to at least 42 million litres per day – this must be rejected outright. ANAWA calls on the S.A. Government to phase out all water extraction from the GAB’s Borefield A as soon as possible.

The nuclear industry generally is a heavy water user. As Tim Flannery says “Coal fired power plants have large water requirements for cooling and steam generation, but these are dwarfed by the water needs of nuclear power.” (Friends of the Earth and the Medical Association for the Prevention of War, 2008).

Water for nuclear power stations can be sourced from a river, lake, dam, or the ocean. It has two uses: it is converted to steam to drive a turbine, and cooling water then converts the steam back to water. Per megawatt, existing nuclear power stations use and consume more water than power stations using other fuel sources. Depending on the cooling technology utilised, the water requirements for a nuclear power station can vary between 20 to 83% more than for other power stations. Water outflows expel relatively warm water which can have adverse local impacts in bays and gulfs. In recent very hot summers in Europe, some French nuclear reactors had to be switched off, because the cooling water became not only too hot to be effective in the reactors, but too dangerous for the outflows.

Water pollutants, such as heavy metals and salts, build up in the water used in the nuclear power plant systems. A U.S. report ‘Licensed to Kill: How the Nuclear Power Industry Destroys Endangered Marine Wildlife and Ocean Habitat to Save Money’ (Greenpeace, 2007), details the nuclear industry’s destruction of delicate marine ecosystems and large numbers of animals, including endangered species. Water shortages, driven by climate change, drought or heat waves have caused reactors to be taken off line periodically, reducing their effectiveness in being reliable producers of baseload power.

ANAWA therefore believes that adding to the myth that nuclear energy can assist with the global warming climate crisis is grossly irresponsible because of the industry’s voracious appetite for water. Therefore the Olympic Dam’s expansion would not only add to Australia’s water usage pressures, but add to global water issues as well. ANAWA strongly recommends that the Olympic Dam expansion be rejected because of its extraordinarily high usage of our most precious and scarce resource, water.

  1. WEAPONS

This is another vexed area of deep concern, and one which no doubt BHP
Billiton does not want to address. But the bald facts are undeniable: nuclear weapons cannot be produced without the raw material of uranium being mined, and secondly, that every country which has acquired nuclear weapons, has done so by association with the nuclear power programme within their country.

By exporting uranium, despite safeguards galore, Australian uranium at very least, frees up uranium from other sources to be used in bomb-making programmes, and at worst, Australian uranium could be used directly in the manufacture of nuclear weapons. There is no way to prove that Australian uranium oxide, once it leaves Australia’s shores, does not end up in other countries’ nuclear weapons programmes. A case in point is the Tricastin plant in France, which is owned and operated by the French government, which serves both the military and civilian sectors. Atom by atom, Australian uranium cannot be separated from uranium sourced from other countries once it enters the nuclear fuel chain. And what country would want to admit that its uranium has been diverted for use in the North Korean nuclear weapons programme? Every exporter claims innocence!

It was Al gore, former U.S. Vice President who said “In the eight years I served in the White House, every weapons proliferation issue we faced was linked with a civilian reactor program.” (Guardian Weekly 9-15 June, 2006)

The International Energy Agency, like a fox in charge of the chicken house, has a dual role: to promote “peaceful” application of nuclear energy, and to guard against nuclear ;weapons proliferation. Despite the attempts of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, with its five yearly Review conferences, nuclear weapons have proliferated, but probably not as much as they would have without that treaty being in existence. However, as recent former head of the IAEA, Dr. Mohamed El Baradei has said: “the IAEA’s Illicit Trafficking Database has, in the past decade, recorded more than 650 cases that involve efforts to smuggle nuclear and radioactive materials” and “IAEA verification today operates on an annual budget of about $100 million – a budget comparable to that of a local police department. With these resources, we oversee approximately 900 nuclear facilities in 71 countries. When you consider our growing responsibilities – as well as the need to stay ahead of the game – we are clearly operating on a shoestring budget.” And “we are only as effective as we are allowed to be.” And “If a country with a full nuclear fuel cycle decides to break away from is non-proliferation commitments, a nuclear weapons could b e only months away.” And “the IAEA’s legal authority to investigate possible parallel weaponisation activity is limited.” (from “An Illusion of Protection” Australian Conservation Foundation and Medical Association for the Prevention of War – 2006).

Australia has in place various safeguard agreements with its client states, but ANAWA has little confidence in such measures. In June 2006, The Weapons of Terror report by the Mass Destruction Commission chaired by Dr. Hans Blix had this to say: “The Commission rejects the suggestion that nuclear weapons in the hands f some pose no threat, while in the hands of others they palace the world in mortal jeopardy. The three major challenges the world now confronts – existing weapons, further proliferation and terrorism – are interlinked politically and also practically: the larger the existing stocks, the greater the danger of leakage and misuse.” (from “An Illusion of Protection” Australian Conservation foundation and Medical Association for the Prevention of War – 2006).

Under article VI of the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, nuclear weapons states are obliged to disarm their nuclear weapons. The recognized five nuclear weapons states (at the time of the NPT’s inception in 1970) were Britain, France, the Soviet Union, China and the United States of America. It’s no accident that they are also the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council with the power of veto. They have not fulfilled their obligations. Yet we still sell uranium to some of those states. Other countries have acquired nuclear weapons since that time, including Israel (undeclared, but a real threat to peace in the Middle East) and India, which previous and present Government toys with as a potential client state.

ANAWA believes that Australia has a moral responsibility not to add to the stockpiles of weapons-available material on the world market, whether such materials are available by legal or illegal means.

ANAWA calls on the Australian and South Australian Governments to reject the Olympic Downs uranium mine expansion on the ground that it adds to the availability of material for manufacture, testing, storage of nuclear weapons – a big problem from any perspective, and one to which Australia need not, and should not contribute.

CONCLUSION:

As well as the four headings above, and the recommendations to scrap plans for Olympic Dam expansion due to outstanding problems in the areas of global warming, water usage, waste disposal and weapons proliferation, ANAWA could site many more reasons for denying BHP Billeton’s request for expansion. These grounds include, but are not limited to

  1. the scant regard for the rights of indigenous people in the area (people whose rights have already been trampled upon by the nuclear industry with the history going back to British nuclear testing, to despoilation of their water supplies) and

  2. b) the outrageously unfair Roxby Downs Indenture Act of 1982, which allowed the then owner of the mine, Western Mining, to totally disregard any other legislation which might have bearing n that land, or their operations. ANAWA considers this extraordinary financial assistance, and exemption from Aboriginal Heritage and environmental considerations to be totally inappropriate, and calls for the abandonment of the aforesaid legislation: the Roxby Downs Indenture Act, 1982.

We believe that the grab for uranium by BHP Billiton and other uranium mining companies is a cynical grab for the grubby dollar while there is some vestige of hope for this ailing industry. It must be seen in light of the fact that this is a declining industry, with less nuclear power being generated each year (mostly due to ageing reactors being de-commissioned, or reactors with major problems being shut down “temporarily”) and the fact that more reactors are shutting down each year than opening, despite all the industry hype. The industry’s projections look rosy, but the new generation IV reactors are still only promises and the facts reveal that, on the other hand, renewable energies are growing at exponential rates, and would be proceeding even faster, if more research and development dollars were put their way, instead of propping up a filthy, failing industry.

Neither is it any argument whatsoever to claim that because coal is finally being recognized as a filthy power source (but without the radioactive legacy offered by the nuclear industry), and being mindful of the fact that there is no such thing as “clean coal”, that the world is forced to make a choice between the two. Both are bad. Both need to be phased out, as soon as possible. Why on earth would any sane nation think of jumping out of the coal-fired frying pan into the nuclear fire? It just doesn’t make sense.

What does make sense is for Australian governments both Federal and South Australian, to invest strongly in the renewable energy sector, to stop bailing out old technology industries, to stop allowing the polluters to continue polluting, and to back up the community desire for transformation into the new technologies which we have to have to prevent runaway climate change occurring.

ANAWA re-iterates its profound concern for a multiplicity of reasons, if the Olympic Dam expansion is allowed to proceed. We call for the proposal to be rejected, and for a total phase out of uranium mining at the Olympic Dam minesite.

******************************************************************

Document prepared by Jo Vallentine

Chairperson, ANAWA.

admin@anawa. org.au

www: anawa.org

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A big swag of useful info, news,updates,reports and media Australian Policy Online Weekly Briefing – 30 July 2009 – please let me know if you’d like the APO or others like WACOSS blogged regularly :)

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New commentary

Chewing the fat

29 July, 2009 | How many of the government’s health policies have been implemented? Angela Beaton and Lesley Russell look at the record

Preventable hospitalisation: the US initiative

28 July, 2009 | Re-admissions to hospital are a costly failure in the hospital system, here and in the US, writes Lesley Russell

Indonesia’s Australian connection

27 July, 2009 | The tragic Jakarta bombings should not distract our attention from the good news coming out of Indonesia, argues Hal Hill on our partner website, INSIDE STORY

New research

Creative Economy

A fistful of festivals

Lynden Barber | Meanjin
30 July, 2009 | It sometimes appears that not only every major capital city, but every café at the end of every street of every godforsaken one-horse town has a film festival — or soon will have.

Effective corporate tax reform in the global innovation economy

Rob Atkinson | Information Technology and Innovation Foundation
26 July, 2009 | This US report examines the issue of corporate tax reform and lays out six key principles for policymakers to consider as well as specific policy recommendations for crafting an innovation-based corporate tax code.

Disability arts sector consultation report

Andi Sebastian, Jacqueline Chant | Arts SA
23 July, 2009 | In late 2008, Arts SA funded a sector-wide consultation to determine the service needs of the disability and arts sector and to identify the most appropriate model for the delivery of these services

Should copyright of academic works be abolished?

Steven Shavell | Berkman Center for Internet and Society
27 July, 2009 | The conventional rationale for copyright of written works, that copyright is needed to foster their creation, is seemingly of limited applicability to the academic domain.

The world of e-portfolios

Allison Miller | Knowledge Tree, Australian Flexible Learning Framework
30 July, 2009 | This article argues that as we move deeper into a digital age, e-portfolios will be a key method for demonstrating existing skills.

Reconceptualising ‘time’ and ‘space’ in the era of electronic media and communications

Panayiota Tsatsou | PLATFORM: Journal of Media and Communication
23 July, 2009 | This paper examines to what extent electronic media and communications have contributed to currently changing concepts of time and space and how crucial their role is in experiencing temporality, spatiality and mobility.

Use of electronic media and communications: Early childhood to teenage years

Australian Communications and Media Authority
23 July, 2009 | This report provides a comprehensive snapshot of young people’s use of electronic media from early childhood through to teenage years, and parents’ views about that media use.

The impact of the crisis on ICTs and their role in the recovery

OECD Directorate of Science, Technology and Industry | Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development
30 July, 2009 | A sudden upturn in global sales of information and communications technology (ICT) goods in May and June suggests the ICT industry may have reached a turning point and be on the road to recovery, according to this OECD report.

An implosion of knowledge

Humphrey McQueen | Meanjin
30 July, 2009 | This articles argues that the privileging of access to data above its application means that the debate over whether libraries are in the book business or the information business is diverting us from the thought that they should be in the knowledge business

Economics

Retail trade industry profile

Jocelyn Pech, Lucy Nelms, Kelvin Yuen, Thomas Bolton | Australian Fair Pay Commission
24 July, 2009 | This report examines the structural and workforce profile of the Retail trade industry, an industry that employs a relatively large proportion of low-skilled and low-paid employees.

Power, mobility and diaspora in the global city

Dale Leorke, Saskia Sassen | PLATFORM: Journal of Media and Communication
23 July, 2009 | While globalisation has given rise to the global financial market, cross-border activities, digital networks with global span, and international organisations such as the UN and WTO that operate independent of nation-states, these remain materially embedded at the local, national level.

Young people with poor labour force attachment

Jocelyn Pech, Anne McNevin, Lucy Nelms | Australian Fair Pay Commission
24 July, 2009 | Drawing on labour force data and previous research findings, this report charts recent trends in a number of indicators, including the population of young people not fully engaged in employment and/or education.

IT modernisation: An exercise in alignment

Dan Briody | Economist Intelligence Unit
23 July, 2009 | This report, based on interviews and a global survey of 170 senior executives, concludes that while firms recognise the importance of modernising IT systems, they do not always implement such projects effectively.

Education

Numeracy, maths and learning difficulties

Anne Bayetto | Curriculum Leadership
25 July, 2009 | This article describes a program where postgraduate education students at Flinders University are helping to support young people who struggle with mathematics.

A new federalism in Australian education, 2009

Jack Keating | Education Foundation, Foundation for Young Australians
27 July, 2009 | This report proposes a national reform agenda for Australian schooling.

Childhood Education and Care, Australia

Australian Bureau of Statistics
30 July, 2009 | Seven out of ten young children attended a preschool or a preschool program in 2008.

Identifying and teaching children and young people with dyslexia and literacy difficulties

Jim Rose | Department for Children, Schools and Families
25 July, 2009 | This UK report focuses on the identification of dyslexia among students and the possible intervention approaches that can be made by teachers and parents.

Environment & Planning

Climate change discussions and negotiations: a calendar

Nina Markovic, Nick Fuller | Parliamentary Library
26 July, 2009 | This background note will be updated to include any new developments on the formal negotiations are taking place within the meetings and working groups that have been established under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change and Kyoto Protocol framework.

A quiet revolution: City governments tackle global warming

Stephen Jones | Australian Review of Public Affairs
26 July, 2009 | While Australia’s federal and state leaders have been stuck discussing the introduction of the emissions trading scheme, some of our local governments have been trying to do something about the impact of human activity on global warming.

Health

Oral health impacts among children by dental visiting treatment needs

Jason Armfield | Australian Institute of Health and Welfare
24 July, 2009 | This report provides information on the oral health impacts experienced by Australian children during the period 2004-06.

Why public hospitals are overcrowded: ten points for policymakers

Jeremy Sammut | Centre for Independent Studies
28 July, 2009 | The three-hundred page reform ‘blue print’ from the National Health and Hospital Reform Commission has endorsed a range of health reform measures that will not solve the hospital crisis in this country, argues Jeremy Sammut.

Indigenous

Staying strong on the outside: improving the post-release experience of Indigenous young adults

Robyn Gilbert, Anna Wilson | Indigenous justice clearinghouse
27 July, 2009 | This research brief draws on international research to identify current understandings of good practice in prisoner reentry generally as well as issues particular to Indigenous prisoner reentry.

Bridges and barriers – addressing Indigenous incarceration and health

National Indigenous Alcohol and Drug Committee | Australian National Council on Drugs
24 July, 2009 | This report argues that the strong links between substance misuse and Indigenous incarceration highlight an urgent need for government to address this disturbing problem.

International

Force 2030: China drives Australia toward its first strategic missile system

Ron Huisken | Nautilus Institute
24 July, 2009 | This essay argues that the strikingly different dimension of Australia’s recent Defence White Paper, stems from a disjointed, inconclusive but unmistakably alarmist assessment of China’s potential impact on order and stability in East Asia.

Middle East outlook and energy security in the Asia-Pacific region

Leanne Piggott | Australian Strategic Policy Institute
24 July, 2009 | This report explores the issue of energy security in the context of a growing dependence of the energy-hungry Asian economies on Middle Eastern supplies.

China: stumbling through the Pacific

Fergus Hanson | Lowy Institute for International Policy
26 July, 2009 | This paper suggests that China’s Pacific aid-giving is unpredictable, secretive and is mired in a vicious cycle of short-termism that is a legacy of its long-running diplomatic battle with Taiwan.

Beyond the nuclear issue: North Korea and non-traditional security challenges

Jeffrey Robertson | Parliamentary Library
26 July, 2009 | Since September 2008 North Korea has undertaken a series of measures to demonstrate the health of Kim Jong-Il, yet at the same time has demonstrated signs that succession plans may be underway.

New voices 2009: Networked

Angela Evans | Lowy Institute for International Policy
27 July, 2009 | This report is an overview of the Lowy institute’s recent conference on the ways in which network relationships, structures, and technologies affect different parts of our world.

Justice

Intimate partner abuse of women in a Central Queensland mining region

Heather Nancarrow, Stewart Lockie, Sanjay Sharma | Australian Institute of Criminology
25 July, 2009 | Perceptions about the mining industry and the rapid growth of mining communities in Australia has led to concerns that these communities are prone to higher rates of intimate partner violence than the general community.

Suspended sentences in Tasmania: key research findings

Australian Institute of Criminology
27 July, 2009 | While offenders given suspended sentences were less likely to be reconvicted, the imposition of these, rather than non-custodial sentences, on first time offenders may have serious repercussions if they are subsequently reconvicted.

Politics

State of denial

Richard Denniss | The Australia Institute
27 July, 2009 | While the Commonwealth will receive a windfall of more than $10 billion per year in revenue from auctioning pollution permits, state and local governments will transfer more than $2 billion a year to the Commonwealth Government.

A fair-weather friend: Australia’s relationship with a climate-changed Pacific

Louise Collett | The Australia Institute
27 July, 2009 | Climate change will bring significant challenges to the island nations of the Pacific. This paper examines Australia’s attitudes to climate change in the region under the two most recent federal governments.

Putting the politics back into Politics: Young people and democracy in Australia

James Arvanitakis, Siobhan Marren | The Whitlam Institute
27 July, 2009 | Young people are changing the way they engage with politics and Politics is going to have to change as a consequence.

Social Policy

Just scraping by? Conversations with Tasmanians living on low incomes

Social Policy and Research Team | Tasmanian Council of Social Service
24 July, 2009 | The voices of low income Tasmanians are reproduced in this report talking in their own words about the daily struggle to make ends meet on inadequate incomes and with limited access to health care and other services.

Managing in a downturn

Centre for Social Impact
24 July, 2009 | This report is the first comprehensive research to assess the effect of the economic downturn on Australian charities and nonprofit organisations.

Compendium of social inclusion indicators

Australian Social Inclusion Board
28 July, 2009 | Developed by the Board to generate discussion and debate on the question of how to measure disadvantage and social exclusion, these indicators are first steps towards comprehensive performance measurement and evaluation of social inclusion in Australia.

A healthier future for all Australians – final report

National Health and Hospitals Reform Commission | National Health and Hospitals Reform Commission
27 July, 2009 | The Federal Government’s health review has called for a major shake-up of the national health system, with the Commonwealth taking over the funding of most services.

New audio

Who stopped the music?

25 July, 2009 | The parlous state of music in public schools means not only are our children missing an important dimension in life, but they miss out on something that promotes brain function and social skills.

Video killed the video star

27 July, 2009 | If everyone is a producer, what role will video play in our lives in the future?

New video

2 live 2 deadly

23 July, 2009 | This video documents the historical struggle of Indigenous radio in Sydney.

Libraries of the future

30 July, 2009 | This UK documentary showcases interviews with leaders from JISC, Oxford University and LSE as well as students and academics who discuss what the library of the future will look like.

New jobs

Lecturer in Asian Studies

The Australian National University 26 July, 2009 | The Faculty of Asian Studies, College of Asia and the Pacific, wishes to appoint an outstanding scholar to lead in the coordination and teaching of its undergraduate and graduate foundational Asian Studies courses.

PhD Scholarship – MARCS Auditory Laboratories

University of Western Sydney 26 July, 2009 | MARCS Auditory Laboratories is undertaking a wide range of projects as part of a prestigious $3.4M ARC/NHMRC “Thinking Systems” grant to develop a ‘thinking head’. This is a breakthrough system that can learn from humans and will lead to advances in everything from hearing aids to mobile phones and video games. UWS is leading a consortium of Australian universities to develop the groundbreaking project including RMIT, Macquarie, Flinders and University of Canberra, with international input from the Technical University of Denmark,

Postgraduate scholarship in Chinese film and media studies

University of Sydney, School of Media and Communications 26 July, 2009 |

An ARC funded scholarship is available for a full-time Masters candidate who is undertaking research in a topic pertaining to Chinese Film and Media Studies (with a special focus on posters of the Cultural Revolution and /or film representations of contemporary Chinese history/memory)

Analyst, Credit team, Stakeholder Group

Australian Securities and Investments Commission 24 July, 2009 | The Credit team is building from the ground up.

Manager, Government Relations

NRMA Insurance 23 July, 2009 | A new position is now available for a strategic, Corporate Affairs professional to influence government policy in areas that impact on the business profitability, sustainability and reputation of NRMA Insurance.

New submissions

Collaborative and challenge-led innovation

01 March, 2010 |

New events

five: fashion musing & Innovation: Management, Policy and Practice launch

LOCATION: The Glasshouse QUT, Creative Industries Precinct, Z2, Level 4, Musk Avenue, Kelvin Grove
ORGANISED BY: CCI – ARC Centre of Excellence for Creative Industries and Innovation

20 August, 2009 | Please join us for the joint launch of two new titles. five: fashion musing and Innovation: Management, Policy and Practice a special edition on Innovation in the Creative Industries.

Official Launch of the Indigenous Policy and Dialogue Research Unit and ‘So, what?’ Lecture with Professor Patrick Dodson

LOCATION:

20 August, 2009 | You are warmly invited to the Official Launch of The Indigenous Policy and Dialogue Research Unit in conjunction with the So, what? public lecture with Professor Patrick Dodson

Green Building and Design Conference 2009 – Green Materials

LOCATION: Melbourne Convention Centre
ORGANISED BY: Centre for Design, RMIT University

09 September, 2009 | Attendance in-person or online

Learning Technologies Conference

LOCATION: Mooloolaba Campus of Sunshine Coast TAFE, 34 Lady Musgrave Drive, Mountain Creek Qld

19 November, 2009 | The objective of the two day 2009 Learning Technologies conference is to challenge and extend your thinking about the ways educators can use learning technologies to challenge, inspire, motivate, and encourage learners.

New books

After the crunch

30 July, 2009 | In this 100-page book, 42 artists, entrepreneurs, commentators, analysts, policy-makers, policy-sceptics, academics, financiers – and citizens – set out their hopes and fears for the future.

Beethoven or Britney : The great divide in music education

25 July, 2009 | Most children have little or no access to quality music teaching. And nothing is being done about it.

Innovation policy in the creative industries

30 July, 2009 | This special issue of Innovation: Management, Practice and Policy will explore some empirical and analytic connections between creative industries and innovation policy. Seven papers are presented. The first four are empirical, providing analysis of large and/or detailed data sets on creative industries businesses and occupations to discern their contribution to innovation. The next three papers focus on comparative and historical policy analysis, connecting creative industries policy (broadly considered, including media, arts and cultural policy) and innovation policy.

five: fashion musing

30 July, 2009 | Visually beautiful, the book explores fashion theory, practice and pedagogy through five key themes – mind, heart,hand, eyes and body.

New guide

Children and privacy complaints – a guide for parents and guardians

26 July, 2009 | This Privacy Victoria information sheet outlines the privacy rights of children under Victorian law.

New websites

Open video conference

27 July, 2009 | As internet video matures, we face a crossroads: will technology and public policy support a more participatory culture or will online video become a glorified TV-on-demand service?

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West Australian Government sacrifices more of your environment for big business

News

MEDIA RELEASE 30 July 2009

Faragher undermines the EPA… again: Greens

The Greens have accused Environment Minister Donna Faragher of continuing an emerging pattern of undermining her own lead environment agency after late yesterday’s announcement of final environmental approval for the massively expanded Gorgon gas proposal for WA’s fragile Barrow Island.

Map of the Montebellos and Barrow Island
Image via Wikipedia

“The Minister has taken advantage of this long winter break to clear through some of the most contentious environmental appeals in her in tray, but unfortunately that burst of productivity has come at the expense of the credibility of our Environmental Protection Authority,” said Greens MLC for the Mining and Pastoral Region, Robin Chapple.

“Mines Minister Norman Moore’s penchant for attacking WA’s environmental approvals system is well-known, and it now seems his ministerial protégé is getting in on the act as well.”

“This sends an ominous signal to anyone in WA who thought we still had a meaningful, independent source of science-based environmental approvals advice.”

Mr Chapple noted that just five days before this Gorgon decision the Minister overrode the EPA by allowing mining in the area surrounding the unique and vulnerable Mungada Ridge, in the Blue Hills Range about 200 km east of Geraldton.

“We are concerned of course that this de facto sidelining of the environment in decision-making on key WA projects will eventually lead to Parliament being presented with a Bill that formally guts the EPA.”

“It will be interesting to see whether the Minister will do anything in this portfolio other than to make her area of responsibility the subject of weaker and weaker protections,” Mr Chapple concluded.

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posted by tony serve in support of Robin Chapple & Greens (WA)

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Police taser sets Aboriginal man on fire – ABC News Article link.

See today’s story and Op-ed below

A 36-year-old man has burst into flames after being shot by a police Taser in Western Australia.

Police say they were trying to arrest the Aboriginal man for petrol sniffing at the Goldfields Aboriginal community of Warburton yesterday when he turned violent.

To view on a PC/Mac please use this link

http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2009/07/21/2631566.htm

To view on a mobile please use this link

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Op-ed – tony serve

  • Police and Justice authorities in remote parts of Western Australia have a tough job dealing with violence and substance abuse in Aboriginal and mixed communities – no doubt about it.

  • The tragedy is that Aboriginal people too often die because authorities like police and  justice staff are clearly not trained and equipped to deal with the issues in a humane and effective way.

  • In the case above, which follows the “cooking” death of an elder in a prison van during a desert journey, it’s clear that the officer involved couldn’t put 2 and 2 together. That is;  petrol + spark = fire.

  • Systemic racism has a long history here, and that plays a part, but it really is about the comfortable white folk in Perth not being moved to provide even BASIC health resources to deal with substance abuse and violence.

  • Authorities can’t even provide proper health care to all here in the city – so imagine, just imagine, what it’s like in the remote desert communities where quick fix politicians visit in the wake of endless tragedies, and leave with empty promises still drying on their lips.

  • A half-baked call for input on the next ten years of mental health policy is a start, but efforts to reach out and listen to traumatised Aboriginal communities are notably absent.

  • If I were a Yamatji man instead of a white boy born on their land, I would have been dead 16 years ago – life expectancy for Aboriginal males is 37!

  • Meanwhile 68% of juvenile prisoners in our jails are Aboriginal yet they make up less than 10% of the population.

  • Let me draw a long bow now as the Uranium industry meets tomorrow in Fremantle to plan new mines and even nuclear power stations on land owned by Aborigines.

  • Is the lack of political will to deliver even the most basic health services linked to the powerful mining lobby’s ongoing efforts to override the wishes and needs of traditional land owners in their quest for profit.

  • See here for the most recent example of miners running roughshod over taditional landowners

  • There’s no point in blaming the coppers, the miners or the state and federal Governments – it’s about our cosy apathy and on the “turning away.”

Shame on us all.  :/

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Uranium Industry meets to plan new mines AND nuclear power, whether you want it in Western Australia or not! join the *ACTION* Wednesday 22 July, 8am, Freo

speaking on July 4

Defend Fremantle‘s Nuclear Free Zone

Wednesday 22 July 8.00am – 9.30am
Esplanade Hotel, Fremantle

Fremantle’s nuclear free zone is being undermined once again by a global uranium forum being held at the Esplanade Hotel.

Join us for muffins and music as we defend Fremantle’s stance against the nuclear industry.

We want to give a powerful message that the forum and the uranium mining industry is not welcome anywhere in Western Australia.

For more information contact Kerrie-Ann Garlick Fremantle Anti Nuclear Group 0402 180 737

clip0000

Iconic Activist, former Senator Jo Vallentine

July 4 appeal to the US



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More nuclear accidents, dangerous leaks, waste risk and mismanagement won’t stop the RUDD Government’s approval of a huge new Uranium mine

Environment Minister Peter Garrett has formally approved the new Four Mile uranium mine in South Australia, saying it poses no environmental risks’.

The premier of South Australian, Mike Rann, welcomed the decision saying operations at the state’s nearby Beverley mine ‘show that uranium c

an be mined without damaging the surrounding environment’.

Which means neither man can have read the South Australian governments own figures into spills at the Beverley mine. Here are just a few [http://www.wise-uranium.org/umopaus.html]

Apr. 22, 2006: spill of 14,400 litres of solution containing approx. 0.5% uranium

Oct. 31, 2005: spill of 23,700 litres of mining solution, containing approx. 0.06% uranium
Aug. 8, 2005: spill of 13,500 litres of extraction fluid containing approx. 0.01% uranium

Mar. 7, 2005: spill of 50,000 – 60,000 litres of injection fluid

Dec. 8, 2004: spill of approx. 2,300 litres of mining solution, containing 0.028% uranium

June 13, 2002: spill of 1,750 litres of brine solution

June 7, 2002: spill of 1,500 litres of injection fluid in the well field

May 5, 2002: spill of 14,900 litres of water containing 0.0018% uranium

May 1, 2002: spill of almost 7,000 litres of brine solution containing some uranium

January 11, 2002: spill of 60,000 liters of groundwater containing acid and uranium, after pipe rupture

Fancy the premier of South Australia being so ignorant of such worrying safety violations going on in his own state. Scandalous.

In fact, that’s the word to sum up the whole Four Mile story: scandalous. Peter Garrett is a former campaigning rock star who fought doggedly against nuclear power before entering politics (‘Why would Australians support an industry that produces radioactive waste, toxic waste?’ he said just three years ago), And with the local Aboriginal communitie

s being (yet again) left out of the negotiations and decision-making over Four Mile, this all has a horribly familiar ring to it.

Click the pic for more from Greenpeace on uranium & nukes

from Greenpeace…Full Story here – please share

http://weblog.greenpeace.org/nuclear-reaction/2009/07/the_history_of_uranium_mining.html

Meanwhile back in Germany the Uranium lobby is on the rise despite the following revelations of safety and management fiascos
http://www.earthtimes.org/articles/show/277622,damaged-rod-found-at-crippled-german-nuclear-site.html

excerpt;
Berlin- A damaged fuel rod sought since last week has been located inside one of Germany’s 12 nuclear power stations, regulators said Wednesday.

The jinxed plant at Kruemmel near Hamburg was shut down for two years by a transformer fire.

It was crippled again July 4 by a short circuit and was then reported to have a problem in one or more of its 80,000 fuel rods. Engineers took the lid off the reactor to find the damaged uranium rod.

The problems at Kruemmel have led to calls to retire the station and re-ignited debate in Germany about nuclear power as an election approaches. Anti-nuclear activists are also highlighting mismanagement of nuclear waste dumps in old salt mines.

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tony serve blogs Tsunami warning issued for SE Australia & ABC News Article link.

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Uranium and Nuclear Industry swings big club, claims opposition are “cavemen” leaves major questions UNANSWERED

How are we to believe that people who make huge amounts of money digging up and selling uranium are “experts?”

The article below seems to take the claim at face value and totally ignores ALL of the unanswered questions.

It’s time for nuclear power: “experts”

Cathy Alexander  July 15, 2009 – 4:49PM

Australia should drop the “caveman” approach to electricity and build some nuclear power stations, experts say.

The uranium industry is booming, with the federal government approving a new mine for South Australia on Tuesday. Full article here  http://news.theage.com.au/breaking-news-national/its-time-for-nuclear-power-experts-20090715-dlac.html

Meanwhile, real experts who have no VESTED interests are not mentioned! See the lionk below for some counterbalance.

See here for stories on Uranium Mining and Nuclear Power plants from Greens (WA) Senator Scott Ludlum, former Senator Jo Vallentine and video/audio from other sources such as Greenpeace

Click here for information from BUMP, ( Ban Uranium Mining Permanently )

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tony serve blogs Uranium mine given not-so-green light by fallen activist Peter Garrett, Greens say his Beverley decision is ‘delusional’

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West Australian Mental Health Review – vital meetings July 20, 21 for families and those from diverse backgrounds

Please ignore the WASP-only Pic  THIS IS ABOUT ETHNIC DIVERSITY 7 MENTAL HEALTH
Please ignore the WASP-only Pic THIS IS ABOUT ETHNIC DIVERSITY & MENTAL HEALTH

Mental Health Consumer advocacy group for Western Australia to be more effective because of YOUR involvement

Mental Health Consumer advocacy group for Western Australia to be more effective because of YOUR involvement


please share, DIGG and circulate this info

click here to download the info as a PDF to share     –  CoMHWA Information

CoMHWA Information
CoMHWA Information
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