Liberals move to disallow Fremantle plastic bag ban

Lynn MacLarenLiberal MLC Hon Peter Katsambanis today moved to disallow the City of Fremantle regulations to ban plastic bags, said Greens MLC Lynn MacLaren.

“The motion aimed to initiate a local law which would ban retailers from providing shoppers with single-use, non-biodegradable plastic bags,” Ms MacLaren said.

“This evidence-based policy has been strongly supported by businesses and the community in Fremantle as it aimed to reduce the overall amount of plastic bags used.”

“Single-use plastic bags can take hundreds of years to break down in landfill and, even worse, often end up polluting out natural environment and becoming a major threat to wildlife.” Read more »

Shark-proof enclosure funds welcome but councils should choose design

Greens MLC Lynn MacLaren has welcomed funding of $400,000 in the 2015-2016 State Budget for two new shark-proof enclosures to be built at unspecified “high use areas along the Western Australian coastline” but says that local councils who co-fund the projects should get a choice over the design and technology.

“Shark-proof enclosures in suitable swimming locations are a much better way to address people’s safety concerns than lethal shark drum lines,” Ms MacLaren said.

“I hope this time we will see a transparent and fair process for deciding which WA coastal locations receive this funding and local governments and their communities will be able to choose which type of enclosure design and technology suits them, be it a grid or net-style barrier, rather than have this decision made by the State Government. Read more »

Proposed port sale highlights unsustainable Freight Link spending

The proposed sale of Fremantle Port throws the Government’s ill-considered investment of $650 million of scarce State Government revenue in the Perth Freight Link into abysmal relief, Greens South Metropolitan MLC Lynn MacLaren says.

“The community is already deeply divided over plans to plough a total $1.6 billion of scarce State and Federal public funds on the Perth Freight Link, which will destroy precious wetlands and lock Perth into a truck-dominated , polluted future for decades to come,” Ms MacLaren said.

“Now we hear that the State Government intends to sell off a historic, public asset – the Fremantle Port – to raise cash to address its Budget deficit, even as it invests heavily in its short-sighted roads agenda.

“If the port is sold, the publicly-funded Perth Freight Link, connecting Roe Highway to the port of Fremantle, will service a private corporation. Read more »

Greens aim to refocus RSPCA debate on animal welfare concerns

The Government today bowed to the wishes of the shooters and fishers and the live export lobby to launch a committee inquiry into the operations of the RSPCA, said Greens MLC Lynn MacLaren.  

"I opposed the motion to establish the inquiry, as I believe the RSPCA has sufficient checks and balances through existing accountability mechanisms, and there is no evidence they do not meet or exceed community expectations outside the complaints of disgruntled former employees and board members who didn’t survive the organisation’s restructure,” Ms MacLaren said.

“By rejecting my motion to expand the terms of the inquiry to include the Government’s own operations in animal welfare in the Department of Agriculture and Food, the Government exposed that they have little interest in improving animal welfare in WA.

“This inquiry seeks only to intimidate the RSPCA, not improve enforcement and compliance of welfare.” Read more »

State Government steering the wrong way with Perth Freight Link

The State Government is steering the wrong way by moving onto the next stage of the Perth Freight Link project, Greens Transport Spokesperson Lynn MacLaren MLC says.

“Rather than solving the long-term freight problems in Perth, the Minister seems hell bent on creating a confrontation in our southern suburbs the like of which this city has never seen,” Ms MacLaren said.

”A recent report from Peter Newman and research fellow Cole Hendrigan from Curtin University Sustainability Policy (CUSP) Institute has already described the proposed project as a waste of taxpayers’ money, with the money being better spent on road and rail connections to a new container port.  

“As this government faces its worst economic crisis, instead of rethinking the Perth Freight Link, it continues it plans to plough scarce dollars into expensive road-building. Read more »

Shooters and Fishers try to shoot down RSPCA

A motion by the WA Shooters and Fishers Party for a Parliamentary inquiry into the operations of the RSPCA appears to be a thinly-disguised attempt to discredit a respected charity viewed by the Party as a major obstacle to its broad hunting agenda, Greens MLC Lynn MacLaren said.

“The Shooters and Fishers Party has repeatedly attacked the RSPCA recently, ranging from complaining how the RSPCA spends publicly donated money on advertising to suggesting that the RSPCA is improperly using the $500,000 it receives from the State Government to conduct compliance activities under the Animal Welfare Act,” Ms MacLaren said.

“So far, the Shooters and Fishers Party has been scant on detail in demonstrating the RSPCA has done anything wrong. Read more »