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Canberra Today 8°/10° | Sunday, August 14, 2022 | Digital Edition | Crossword & Sudoku

Shame on you, Minister Vassarotti. Shame. Shame. Shame.

One of reader Sonia Cottee’s photos of trails of blood left by injured and dying kangaroos on Red Hill.

Reader SONIA COTTEE, of Red Hill, is very, very upset with the Environment Minister. And she’s unafraid to tell her so. 

Dear Minister Vassarotti, After 10 days interstate, today I returned to my daily walk up Red Hill.

Write to

The calm and serenity of my walk was shattered beyond belief when I came across the BLOODY EVIDENCE left by injured kangaroo/s from your so-called, “humane cull”. I am shocked, sickened and appalled by what I saw.

I read two letters to the editor published in “CityNews” (June 23) describing the horrors of the kangaroo cull on Red Hill. I couldn’t believe I was reading about such cruelty occurring in my neighbourhood. 

Are you really employing people to come in and wash away the blood trails left by injured and dying kangaroos? If you are, the attached photos show there are areas they have missed. The BLOODY evidence is sickening. SHAME ON YOU. SHAME. SHAME. SHAME.

This cruelty must stop – NOW.

Yours in absolute disgust.

Sonia Cottee, Red Hill

Kangaroo rights as sentient beings

THE ACT government introduced a bill in 2019 to legislate animals as sentient beings. It’s also introduced a broad range of reforms to strengthen animal welfare laws. Given this, isn’t it time for it to apply to kangaroos that are gunned down every year? 

The ACT community strongly values animals and science tells us that animals are sentient, they feel emotion and pain and that is now being recognised in law.

We then have no doubt that shooting thousands of Canberra’s kangaroos day after day in the months of May, June, July affects that entire population of beings. 

It states, we have a duty to care for the mental and the physical welfare of the animals. 

So, there you have it, the law has spoken. 

Alex Kuch, via email

So, tell us, how did the CIT board lose its moral compass?

IN view of the continuing integrity and funding debacle at CIT (“’Stan’ Steel stumbles into ‘another nice mess’”, “Seven Days”, CN June 30), it is reassuring to discover that CIT’s “CEO along with the board chair regularly meets with the Minister for Skills and representatives from ACT government directorates.“ (CIT annual report 2021, Page 28).

The minutes of these meetings should reveal how well the minister‘s formal notification of concern 15 months ago about a particular CIT contract with a Patrick Hollingworth company was followed up and monitored over subsequent meetings and how forthcoming the CEO and board chair were about additional funding flowing in the same direction at later dates. 

The annual report also talks up processes like CIT’s new “Strategic Compass 2025”, but fails to indicate external inputs for this claimed transformative approach and what has been gained and lost so far from the various sets of “weekly sessions” that staff have endured to “understand the new perspective of dealing with increased complexity in our work and the industries and community we serve”. 

Hopefully current inquiries will shed much light on the links between the troublesome contracts and the development and implementation of this strategy and all that hangs off it. 

The 2022 report will need to steer clear of waffle words, plus back up claims about “transformation work through our ‘evolving together’ approach to understanding the complexities of the CIT system” and avoid blithely repeating a stated key performance achievement from 2021: “enhancing management capability through ongoing transformation work with the senior leadership team” (Page 20). 

Given the lack of lucidity and transparency to date on all these matters, the next CIT annual report may need to also include a special chapter about how and why the CEO and board lost their moral compass in recent years. 

Sue Dyer, Downer

How Steel could save us billions!

THE complexity thinker Patrick Hollingworth’s message is simple: adapt to change or fail. If Mr Steel, in his capacity as transport minister, took this advice, he could save us taxpayers billions. 

With the manufacture of increasingly high-tech electric buses in Australia, the tram from Spain has become redundant. So has high-density housing producing the urban heat island effect. 

The resulting extensive use of air conditioning causes high energy consumption, and for those who can’t afford this or work outside, these temperatures can be fatal.

Could Mr Steel please pay me $8 million for this important piece of mentoring?

Robin Underwood, via

Trade commissioners a ‘waste of money’

THE media storm about the NSW government attempting to appoint John Barilaro as a state trade commissioner to New York has not touched on the cost/benefits of states appointing their own trade commissioners overseas and paying for their upkeep out of state taxpayers’ money. 

The issue as to whether such positions are necessary at all, apart from providing largesse for ex-politicians and the like, has not been addressed by the media.

The federal government already provides trade commissioners throughout the world and it is my view, based on my time in the Trade Commissioner Branch and on the promotion of trade in the old Department of Trade and Industry, that such appointments are a waste of money, a view supported by my high-level contacts in DFAT and Treasury.

It is time for pressure to be put on state governments to justify such expenditure and explain the selection process used to determine these appointments which must be open to independent scrutiny.

Ric Hingee, Duffy

Moore ignores two telling facts 

MICHAEL Moore’s enthusiasm for the election of Senator David Pocock (“Pocock’s job is to build trust for ‘all the people’”, CN June 22) ignores two telling facts.

Firstly, a comparison of aggregate senate primary votes received by Labor, the Greens and Liberals in the ACT at the 2019 and 2022 elections shows that the Labor vote fell by 5.9 percentage points from 39.3 per cent to 33.4 per cent, the Greens by 6.8 percentage points from 17.7 per cent to 10.9 per cent, and the Liberals by 7.5 percentage points from 32.3 per cent to 24.8 per cent. These votes moved largely to Pocock who scored 21.2 per cent of the primary vote.

Rather than showing “an extraordinarily poor showing for the Liberal Party [Zed Seselja]” as Moore claims, it was a poor showing by the three major parties.

Secondly, this voting swing, resulting in the election of Pocock, was primarily the result of the “teal” climate-action bandwagon that had no implementation plan.

If Senator Pocock is “to build trust” he must first enunciate a realistic energy policy in place of the default misinformation on which he was elected, that ignored the long and expensive task ahead to bring about a low emissions electricity grid.

John L Smith, Farrer 

Sceptics can rely on Sky News 

THE ongoing climate-change alarmists featuring in CityNews continue to ignore the elephant etcetera undermining their reliance on “climate science” .

Fortunately, we sceptics can rely on the Sky News team to drive a media “bulldozer” through their dodgy “climate solutions” that threaten to drive us all into power blackouts and financially unacceptable taxes and bills!

Colin Blair, Curtin

Where’s the climate evidence?

DR Douglas Mackenzie (Letters, CN June 23) claims that a previous writer, Max Flint, was giving a catalogue of false and misleading claims in regard to climate change. 

Well, a lot of people say the same about the people pushing renewables.

I think it’s time the climate-change proponents read the article by emeritus professor of earth sciences Ian Plimer, Australia’s best-known geologist, in “The Spectator”, June 18. A professor of geology, mining and ore deposits, he has been asking the scientists that Dr Mackenzie has written about, to provide evidence that climate change has been caused by humans. To date none have provided any evidence. 

How much of Australia do the proponents of renewables want to be covered with wind turbines and solar panels? The cost may come as close as the $10 billion Dr Mackenzie claims the nuclear power plants will cost. 

Then there is the disposal of the turbines and solar panels. They have to be buried not be recycled, and this is done every 15-20 years. So where do they all go? In the US it is too hard to remove them, so they are left insitu falling apart and a blight on the countryside.

Vi Evans, MacGregor

I was pointing out where he was wrong

MAX Flint (Letters, CN June 30) claimed that I “disparaged” him. I was pointing out where he was wrong and what is the truth. 

He continues to wander away from the truth in his latest epistle. Climate scientists and other experts have known for decades that emissions of carbon dioxide from fossil fuels (coal, oil and its derivatives) initiated the process of global warming – now heating – 160 years ago, and continue to cause higher average global temperatures at an ever-increasing rate. That rate is now about 100 times faster than at any time in the last ~1 million years.

Carbon dioxide is now being joined by increasing volumes of methane from the thawing Arctic permafrost seafloor sediments in warming oceans, our mountains of waste, coal mines and fugitive emissions from natural gas wells and pipeline networks.

Mr Flint also greatly exaggerates the warming influence of water vapour and cloud. As any meteorologist knows, both are too transient to have a longer-term influence on Earth’s climate.

Dr Douglas Mackenzie, Deakin

When the bus trumps the car

RE Leon Arundell’s letter “Public transport emissions a ‘myth”’ (CN June 23): A car emits 2.7kg emission for a 10km journey; and with an average load of 1.46 passengers, the emission per passenger (including driver) is 2.7/1.46kg or 1.85kg.

Buses cause 2.5kg emission per person for a 10km journey. If the bus

is carrying 60 people, the emission is the same, resulting in 2.5/60 or .04 kg emission per passenger. In fact, the emission per person decreases as the number of passengers increases. 

Transport Canberra’s result is thus better than individual cars’ result as soon as the number of passengers exceeds three, which is almost always the case, especially in the daily commuting situation, which is being considered.

Jack Palmer, Watson


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2 Responses to Shame on you, Minister Vassarotti. Shame. Shame. Shame.

S. Draw, K. Cab. says: July 6, 2022 at 7:35 pm

@ Vi Evans, MacGregor,

Reaching for the celebrity geologist Ian Plimer to support your arguments for denial of human induced climate chaos, is about on par with reaching for Godwin’s Law. His assertions for increase in atmospheric CO2 from volcanic sources have been well and truly debunked by his own peers in science. I think you’ll find most of them now simply ignore him which might answer your question about lack of evidence forth coming.

Pushing renewables has nothing to do with any of this. No need to mix your arguments. One could agree with you about un-costed impact of renewable technologies, but the above would still be true (debunked part).

I’ll go so far as to admit it was once this lapsed geologist’s very own skeptic position shared with Ian Plimer. In the earlier days before general public awareness (although scientific consensus was well established) I decided to look into it to confirm my position. Well, I didn’t have to go very far before I changed my views. I’m not embarrassed to say so; I try to keep an open mind. But for the most part the science continually indicates it is HEAVILY weighted toward it being human induced, to the point of little doubt. There is no need for “belief”.

Here is a key bit of the puzzle that anyone with doubts should try and get their head around: “rate of change”.

motojohnno says: July 6, 2022 at 11:17 pm

Your correspondents protesting the ACT Government’s kangaroo cull have every reason to be angry. In the case of Red Hill nature reserve, the ACT Environment Directorate claims that there were 1,300 kangaroos inhabiting this reserve in 2022. Regular walkers there are incredulous at this number. The inflating of kangaroo population estimates by ‘extrapolating’ the counts made in transects or sections of the nature reserves is resulting in massive increases in the numbers of kangaroos they calculate should be killed.
The government’s kangaroo cull is called into question by your second correspondent who rightly points out that this same government passed ‘sentient animal legislation’ in 2019. They did not specifically exclude eastern grey kangaroos from this legislation, other than by enacting Controlled Native Species legislation which technically decrees that they are a ‘pest’ in the land they have inhabited for millions of years. The ACT Government MLAs do not perceive the obvious hypocrisy, but the rest of us do.


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