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Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Stropping Straterra

(From the Nelson Evening Mail 'letters to the editor' column)

Sir, I have just read a questionaire commissioned by Straterra ( a mining industry, mostly coal industry advocate) who have subsequently released the ‘results’ which are ‘that NZer’s support mineral exploitation & mining’. 
 The Questionaire however, creates misleading questions to elicit a predetermined response, most especially about Solid Energy’s proposal to mine lignite in Southland.
 I can only extrapolate that Solid Energy is attempting to ‘image build’ in preparation for being sold as an SOE.
 Though it didn’t fool me the poll has certainly fooled people who responded to the questionaire. 
 It makes comfort statements about lignite mining, cleverly implying environment protection, no greenhouse emissions, the environment returned to the way it was before, the community getting special benefits, lower price diesel, great jobs. 
 It’s the most shocking piece of ‘green wash’ misinformation I have ever read. 
 The poll would do the tobacco industry proud! 
 I just hope that that the desperation revealed in the way this questionaire was framed, is symptomatic of an industry in its last dying struggles to survive. 
 No attempt to whitewash lignite extraction (a cross between peat and coal but choked full of pollutants) can disguise its drastic effect on climate change and the Southland community.

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