Take note Mr Morrison, thousands of quiet Australians attended the rally and marched for climate action across Australia today. I am a 72-year-old grandma and I proudly marched and chanted alongside my 18-year-old year 12 granddaughter. We are not going to sit in silence.
Caroline Coombes, Macgregor
More to be done on environment
The achievement of more energy from sustainable sources is without doubt worthwhile given the strength of the advice across the world about carbon pollution ("Policy targets cars, gas", September 17).
While there is merit in the energy plan there is a serious gap with no mention of action to deal with plastics, which in the ACT are buried in landfill.
We still do not recycle plastic waste like polystyrene foam packaging, polyester materials, poly pipe used in water, power and drainage; corflute and shade cloth signs, garden hose, irrigation pipes, nylon chopping boards and toothbrushes, toys, plastic boxes - the list goes on.
Our quaint planning rejected a proposal to establish a plastics recycling plant said to produce fuel: instead of rejection the project should be studied with a view to solving deficiencies.
In another project rubbish is to be burned to produce electricity. The projects were proposed for Hume and Fyshwick respectively.
Fyshwick is not the right location and this proposal should be steered to Mugga Lane recycling centre and the Government build an extension to the rail line so that rubbish sent by rail to the Tarago pit is efficiently assembled and loaded on a train, away from the retail centre that Fyshwick has become.
We know overseas destinations are refusing foreign rubbish and recyclables, the ACT could become a regional processing centre for glass and all plastics. Once plastic recycling is successfully established within the ACT the rubbish train can start bringing recyclable plastics back from the Tarago big pit.
We should progressively exhume our landfill and sort better to remove plastics, "polys", masonry and whatever else will not decompose. Landfill rubbish should have all decomposed now, from that dumped 20 years ago and more. All that landfill can be reclaimed and the space filled again.
Dumping plastics into landfill may not affect climate directly as does carbon but it is certainly pollution and we should be ashamed of our dumping.
Warwick Davis, Isaacs
Stop sniping from your armchairs
In relation to the article (September 20) about the Young Labor people taking the mickey out of themselves with an Aldi bag, I would like to suggest that people chill out about this issue. Firstly, one can't put a 40-year-old head onto 20-year-old shoulders. Secondly, youth comes with a sense of the ridiculous. I did many things when I was young that were un-PC, a bit out there and a bit silly. I challenge all readers to say differently. Let us acknowledge that the Young wings of all political parties have among their membership, young people who are engaged in the political process, are intelligent and articulate but are also allowed to be youngsters at the same time.
Old fogies should celebrate these young people as the leaders of tomorrow, who are going through the learning process. I for one am proud of the Young Labor group. Old fogies should take a leaf out of their book and become engaged in the political process instead of sniping from their armchairs and wheelie-walkers.
However, I am not proud of the comments from the ACT branch secretary regarding the election of the National Young Labor secretary. He has no mandate for such comments and does not speak for me, nor my ALP colleagues in matters outside the ACT ALP. I would suggest that the secretary of National Young Labor was elected by his peers and enjoys a greater respect and support than Mr Byrne. Whether Mr Byrne is disappointed by the election of an official, in another arm of the party, in which he is not engaged, is an irrelevance.
I congratulate Mr Douros on his election. Having an ACT Young Labor member being elected to national office is a compliment to the ALP members in the ACT.
John Hargreaves, Ex-MLA and Life Member of the ALP
Rates pain continues
My 2019 rates notice from the ACT government has just arrived. On top of the rates rises of earlier years, this current one is up by a further $445 on the 2018 rates notice, a 19 per cent rise in one year!
The $445 increase is made up of a fixed charge increase of $60, a fire levy increase of $8, and a valuation based charge increase (based on Average Unimproved Value or AUV) of $377.
The AUV is identical on both the 2018 and 2019 notices. The AUV is used with a rating factor to calculate the valuation based charge, so an increased "rating factor" must have been applied.
The ACT government on its ACT Revenue Office website states that in 2017 it updated the methodology for calculating general rates on units. Following community feedback, it states the government introduced further changes to improve fairness in how unit rates are calculated.
Given the 19 per cent increase in my rates from 2018 to 2019, can someone please explain how this is improving fairness.
Murray May, Cook
Government milking us dry
Like many Canberrans I have recently paid my annual rates. Realising that rates have increased markedly over the last few years I did an analysis.
The gross amount of my rates assessments has increased by an average of 10.6 per cent each year over the last five years. Quite remarkable, given I thought inflation is low at this time. However I receive an age pensioner rebate, which I appreciate. What impact does that have? It means that the net amount I actually pay for rates has only risen by 13.4 per cent each year over the last five years! The ACT government has exceeded its wildest dreams.
You ask "Why?" Answer - apart from a modest increase in the pensioner rebate between 2014 and 2015 of $29, the rebate has remained unchanged for the last 5 years at $399. Where is the "milk of human kindness"?
Ron Reeson, Nicholls
Hanson wrong for inquiry
The Canberra Times reported (September 20) that Pauline Hanson is set to be the deputy chair of the Inquiry into the family law system.
Her appointment is absurd as Pauline Hanson is totally bereft of the empathy needed for such a sensitive inquiry.
The appointment is obviously supported by Prime Minister Morrison to court One Nation. It is just another example of cronyism and lack of judgement by the Morrison government.
Michael Lucas, Conder
Kick in the guts
My nephew has worked at a Woolworths supermarket in a medium size regional town for the past 10 years. In June this year, a directive from head office stated that managerial positions would be halved (from 8 to 4). Managers would need to apply for the new positions. He was unsuccessful in securing a new restructured managerial position but was eventually offered a position very similar to his old job at a basic hourly rate. In the case of my nephew this meant a drop in annual salary from $64,000 to $44,000. He also used to get an annual bonus of approx $6000 which will no longer be available. He has in fact lost 30 per cent of his salary.
I doubt that anyone on a mid-range income would be able to sustain a 30 per cent drop in salary. His mortgage and expenses will remain the same and the chances of securing other employment in a regional town are limited.
So, what of our PM's catch cry "have a go to get a go". What hollow words they are in the real world for those people whose jobs are being sacrificed for corporate greed. This type of cost-cutting by large corporations is not new or isolated however less wages means less tax therefore the government loses out on additional revenue which will have a huge impact in the future as more and more people are forced into lower wages or dare I say it, Newstart.
All employees affected by this restructure felt like they were "kicked in the guts" for years of loyal service.
Barbara Godfrey, Lyneham
Pie in the sky
Scott Hannaford ("Green energy plan to make Australia power plant of the Pacific", September 19) should ask Dr Ken Baldwin to explain some of the detail for this daft plan. Details like who will pay for the undersea cables and renewable energy subsidies etc. Also what is he proposing should be used to produce the hydrogen. All known methods are extremely expensive and handling hydrogen is very risky. Scott couldn't be bothered to ask any of the difficult questions! Sounds like pie in the sky to me.
John McKerral, Batemans Bay
Choose friends carefully
I can remember receiving parental advice/warning that you may be judged by the company you keep. Given their forthcoming meetings in the United States, I wonder who should be more concerned - Scott Morrison or Donald Trump?
Ted Tregillgas, Flynn
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