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Tasmania's Tamar Valley pulp mill: a comparison of planning processes using a good environmental governance framework


Gale, F, Tasmania's Tamar Valley pulp mill: a comparison of planning processes using a good environmental governance framework, Australian Journal of Public Administration, 67, (3) pp. 261-282. ISSN 0313-6647 (2008) [Refereed Article]

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Copyright 2008 The Author Journal compilation copyright 2008 National Council of the Institute of Public Administration Australia

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DOI: doi:10.1111/j.1467-8500.2008.00586.x


In November 2004, the Tasmanian government requested the state's planning body, the Resource Planning and Development Commission (RPDC), to undertake an evaluation of a proposal to establish a pulp mill at Long Reach near Bell Bay on Tasmania's Tamar Estuary. In early 2007, Gunns Limited, the project's proponent, pulled out of the RPDC process and the government established an alternative, 'fast-track' process under the Pulp Mill Assessment Act (PMAA). This article evaluates the RPDC and the PMAA assessment processes using a 'good environmental governance' framework composed of eight criteria - transparency, accountability, openness, balance, deliberation, efficiency, science and risk. The comparison reveals that although the RPDC process fell short of the ideal, it was markedly superior to the PMAA process that replaced it. The case highlights how political economic power can be used to the detriment of public planning and the communities and environment that rely on it.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:governance, forest, sustainability, political economy, Tasmania
Research Division:Human Society
Research Group:Political science
Research Field:Environmental politics
Objective Division:Environmental Policy, Climate Change and Natural Hazards
Objective Group:Environmental policy, legislation and standards
Objective Field:Environmental protection frameworks (incl. economic incentives)
UTAS Author:Gale, F (Professor Fred Gale)
ID Code:56040
Year Published:2008
Web of Science® Times Cited:12
Deposited By:Government
Deposited On:2009-03-22
Last Modified:2014-12-10

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