Canberra faces even bigger fire disaster

Opinion: Canberra faces even bigger fire disaster

Opinion
John Carter says the Canberra fire disaster of 2003 has apparently been forgotten, as they continue to plant explosive eucalyptus trees. Photo by Shutterstock.

John Carter says the Canberra fire disaster of 2003 has apparently been forgotten, as they continue to plant explosive eucalyptus trees. Photo by Shutterstock.

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The Canberra "bubble" tells us that we are pushing for carbon neutrality by 2030 or 2050 - depending on which side of parliament is discussing it.

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The Canberra "bubble" tells us that we are pushing for carbon neutrality by 2030 or 2050 - depending on which side of parliament is discussing it.

The proponents of 2050 will mostly be long forgotten octogenarians in 2050 and be nearing a different day of judgement - a decision on the temperature at which they will endure eternity. It is said to be warm downstairs.

Down the hill, National Farmers' Federation tells us we will get $100 billion from agricultural exports by 2030.

The same applies to the Red Meat Advisory Council, which aims to double red meat value by 2030. Their four-year Meat Industry Strategic Plans (1996), of which RMAC is "the custodian", is now embarrassing reading in its utter waffle and vagueness.

RMAC, MLA etc, won't touch a full beef industry audit, as has been done in the US, to give a base from which to measure any improvement. It is impossible to deliver anything over which one has no control or knowledge. Remember Bob Hawke's, "no child will be living in poverty by 1990".

Having read all 80 pages of the 'Australian Beef Sustainability Framework', I was concerned by the involvement of Sustainable Agriculture at the ANU. They apparently have the motto: "Return to our 1788 landscape". Their influence on Landcare management continues to see the insistence on the exclusive planting of the explosive eucalyptus, with their short lifespan and accompanying soil degradation.

This contrasts with the fire protective, soil building, deciduous trees that Charles Weston and Lindsay Pryor had planted in Canberra from its inception, until urban academic insanity descended on the capital.

Canberra has now planted shallow rooted eucalypts on both sides of the new Northbourne Avenue light rail tracks and in all the fast expanding new outer suburbs. The Canberra fire disaster of 2003 is apparently forgotten, as they fuel up for a much bigger one whilst talking about reducing emissions!

Farmer representatives have a solitary seat at the "framework table". And apparently can't see the contradiction in reducing farming land and increasing production by 2030. If the government listens to these people, I see a scary return to the environment, where less than one million indigenous people were fed as we now try to feed more than 25 million.

The framework paper says there were 45,921 businesses with cattle in 2018 and 550,000 rural holdings larger than 10 hectares. Apparently the 200,000 odd cattle producers with PICs contain more than 150,000 phantom cattlemen! They are ignored, but still have to pay levies to finance these expensive players of virtual reality.

My eyes did light up as I read of $1.66 billion in payments from the government's Emissions Reduction Fund. I look forward to my sustainability reward cheque in the same way that Paraway received their $100 million.

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