PoMC splurges on multi-media advertising campaign

Sad isn’t it that the PoMC can spend perhaps $millions on jaunty advertising, but not a few thousand dollars to test Yarra sediments for radionuclides.

By now you will probably have been hit by the PoMC’s PoMC advertising blitz on TV, radio and print media claiming how important the channel deepening project is to our economy and our future, and assuring us that “before we deepened the channels we deepened our knowledge".

It really makes you wonder why the spin campaign has revved up at this point in time doesn’t it? Perhaps it is because the two massive dredges will be back in the Bay full time for most of 2009, or perhaps it is because they have no good answer for why they failed to test the Yarra sediments for radionuclides, or perhaps the new economic order has revealed that the project’s pie-in-the-sky projections for ongoing growth for the next 30 years - and which the project’s economic justifications rely upon - are just over enthusiastic conjecture. A number of Bay watchers have commented that they have noticed less container traffic in the last few months, and it seems their observations are correct (see next item) ….the Port’s business plan is staggering under the global financial crisis – and it doesn’t look like they will be getting all these big fully laden ships that they have been dreaming of for so long.

Sad isn’t it that the PoMC can spend perhaps $millions on jaunty advertising, but it can’t seem to see its way clear to spend a few thousand dollars to test the Yarra sediments for radionuclides. (See our previous news items on radionuclide risk in the Yarra at www.bluewedges.org )

Also interesting is the recent addition to the Port’s usual logo is the appearance of the words “A Living, Working Bay”. Although we understand and accept that the PoMC is responsible for the shipping channels and port waters in the Bay, and we do not challenge their current need to access to Port of Melbourne via the Bay and Yarra River, we are surprised that they now seem to be staking a claim for the whole Bay!

A supporter has drawn a comparison between the wording used by the PoMC and wording used to describe our damaged waterways, saying that Government spin doctors some time ago began describing trashed rivers - notably the Murray, Goulburn, Campaspe, etc - as 'working rivers,' apparently meaning by this that a working river could not be expected to have a natural life. Perhaps a 'working' bay can be expected to work with us giving no consideration to its health? 

Is the PoMC becoming an untouchable entity - not government, not private, able to be one or the other as the occasion demands, and being given an ever-expanding scope of operation, now including channels, ports, bay infrastructure, and roads and rail lines?

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