Water Week

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Select committee, not EIS, best process to resolve South Australia’s Penola pulp mill scrutiny says MHA

Posted by waterweek on 28 September 2007

An Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) process would not necessarily have been the best way to examine the Penola pulp mill proposal, Souh Australian MHA R.G. Kerin said in the South Australian House of Assembly on 11 September 2007.

EIS result likely to have been the same: “There is no doubt that many issues had to be considered, bearing in mind that this is an alternative planning process that we went through,” said Kerin. “On balance, I am satisfied that this is probably the best process. I know there are some people who very much wanted to see an EIS. I would say to those people that an EIS might not always give them exactly what they want. I think there is an assumption by some people that an EIS would have delivered a different result, but I think that assumption is wrong.

Environment fully considered: “I think that the way this measure sets some very strict environmental restrictions on the plant is an acceptable alternative,” said Kerin, “given the time frames that we are facing and the support for this development as a result of the direction we have taken. Environmental aspects were raised by a range of people, but I think we have addressed virtually every possible environmental issue with respect to restrictions on emissions from the plant. So, there will be some who will be a bit disappointed but, obviously, our job, as a committee representing the parliament of South Australia and therefore the people of the state, was to come up with what we felt was a balance.”

Reference: R.G. Kerin, Member for Frome, House of Assembly, South Australia, 11 September 2007.

Erisk Net, 16/9/2007

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