The full text of the Letter to the Editor of the Comment News, sent on 09 June 2005, is below.
I refer to the article published in the Armadale Comment News on 7 June 2005, relating to the Armadale Redevelopment Authority (ARA) "testing a planning technique to ensure all new buildings reach satisfactory levels of sustainability", in which the minister responsible is reported to have said "Homes will be designed to use land efficiently and have minimal impact on the environment" and "Businesses will adopt industrial ecology principles...reducing transport, storage and pollution".
What a lot of political rubbish!
This is just another action to make the autocratic and unaccountable ARA even more powerful, and to give a warm, fuzzy feeling about the environment, without taking any real substantial action to protect the environment.
Local governments will still be able to deliberately inhibit the use of energy saving devices, like our solar water heater that is deliberately shaded by the city council, which the council has been knowingly doing for several years, and for which the city council is unaccountable.
Local governments and the state government, will still be able to grow trees into overhead powerlines, causing disruption to the electricity supply, and the extra pollution caused by having to repair the disruptions to the electricity supply.
The rubbish about reducing pollution, and being environmentally sustainable, conflicts with the minister's approval of the new coal fired power station, designed to further increase pollution in WA.
And, as the minister is also responsible for road transport in WA, if the minister was at all sincere in dealing with pollution, we would have mandatory, regular roadworthiness testing for all motor vehicles, which would include emissions control regulation. But then, road safety is apparently also of little importance to the minister.
And, instead of limiting the planning to new buildings (significantly coming after approving the new coal fired power station), the actions should include restricting urban development of any local government, until all of the roads in the built-up areas covered by a local government, have footpaths and cycle paths, to encourage residents to walk or cycle, rather than driving short distances due to the lack of safety in walking and cycling.
And, there is also the matter of the smog in Armadale and Perth, from wood-fires and oil-fires, for heating, etc. If the minister was sincere about reducing pollution, something like hearth taxes would be implemented, to discourage burning these fuels, and to finance interest-free loans for cleaner heating of houses.
And, instead of the government increasing pollution with extra coal and diesel fuelled electricity generation, the state government would be implementing clean electricity generation systems, such as wind farms.
But then, sincerity is not a feature of the minister or of the state government.
I can be contacted by email by clicking on the link at Bret