Logan & Albert Conservation Association

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Opportunity to comment on the Draft River Recovery plan

Last Updated on 29 May 2014

Opportunity to comment on the Logan City Draft River Wetlands Recovery Plan 2013 - 2023  closes Friday 30 May 2014


Logan City Council's Draft Logan Rivers and Wetlands Recovery Plan 2013-2023 is a Council document that will guide and facilitate the Plan Vision:
"Working together to support healthy rivers and wetlands that sustain Logan’s culture, lifestyle and livelihood" 
This vision is to be achieved through three strategic outcomes which support community connection and stewardship; sustainable, best practice industry and innovation; and building the health and resilience of our waterway assets

Read 2 documents from this link: http://lcc-consult.objective.com/portal/environment__sustainability/riverrecovery?tab=files


 Logan and Albert Conservation Association (LACA) commends the Council on its plan for river and wetlands recovery. The underpinning strategy of re-engaging the community with Logan’s rivers and their associated waterways is very sound and is deliverable over time through the beautification and access/engagement actions outlined in the Plan. 

LACA does, however, have concerns related to the ongoing implementation of the plan with respect to rebuilding the natural values of the waterways. 
These concerns are:  
1. Current restoration practice on Slacks Creek, where extended areas of creek bank vegetation are being entirely removed and replanted in one action.  
Clearing of weeds must be staged in order to retain biodiversity values along these sites over the restoration period, limit damage and erosion along to creek banks resulting from intense storm events (as has already occurred along a 200 metre stretch at Timothy Park). 
In this respect much of the current restoration practice to date along Slacks Creek lacks consistency with the Recovery Plan’s Strategic Outcome 3: ‘Delivering iconic demonstration projects’. 
2. The reference to the use of offsetting as a means of building/securing riparian corridors. 
Offsetting represents a net loss of biodiversity across the city landscape. It is unacceptable to LACA to allow the sacrifice of one ecologically valuable natural area with the objective of securing another through an ‘offset process. Each area has unique ecological values and functions which cannot be replaced, and each must be strongly protected through regulation, not commodified and monetised to enable a landscape ‘transaction’ process to occur. 
Furthermore, Council’s ‘ecological significance scoring’ – which provides the basis for calculating the ‘cost’ of offsetting -  has been demonstrated by LACA (see submissions to the DLPS) to be significantly flawed and anomalous, due to Council’s failure to use the second stage  ‘expert panel’ process to finesse 2007 BAMM derived GIS mapping data. This failure of due process has been exacerbated by unwillingness on the part of Council to build a genuine database by funding long term fauna/flora survey work across Logan. 
3. Loss of valuable wetland area under the 2014 Planning Scheme: 
LACA has noted that the area of the Loganholme Wetlands under Conservation Zone 11 in the 2006 planning scheme has been reduced in the 2014 Draft Planning Scheme – with certain private properties and other Council-owned areas now not covered by a conservation overlay. The removal of a conservation overlay from the private properties off Beenleigh Redland bay Road appears to be related to allowing full property development to occur off an extended Vincent Street. 
Towards the river, Logan Water – not known for its environmental sensitivity - now has control of a large area of the wetlands. 
The adjacent Council-owned section is proposed as an ‘animal safari’ site. Since this is 67% flood prone, Council may be inclined to allow filling of this site for the proposed safari zoo. 
LACA asserts that these roll-backs of conservation intent across this important Logan River wetland are entirely inconsistent with the positive aspirations expressed in the ‘Strategic outcomes’ statement in Council’s Draft River Recovery Plan:
ENVIRONMENTAL: ‘The health and resilience of our creeks and wetlands has improved’ and ‘Desired regional outcomes and policies: Targets include restoring ecosystem health and ecological processes to waterways and maintaining and increasing wetland condition.’
 To be consistent with Draft River Recovery Plan aspirations such as ‘With increasing pressure on our waterways, it is essential we protect, enhance and celebrate these natural assets’, LACA would urge Council to begin building a complete inventory of the associated waterways and wetlands which are crucial to the success of the plan.
In this respect LACA would see, for example, the inclusion and priority protection of Jerry’s Downfall/Flesser’s Reserve; Ferry Road Carbrook wetland to the river; Reidel Road Carbrook wetland to the river; Serpentine Creek to the river south of Beenleigh Redland Bay Road to the river; Loganholme wetlands to the river. Other associated wetlands and creek systems need to be identified and added to the inventory. 
Of particular concern to LACA are the rollbacks of environmental protection discussed above and the threat of major road construction through Jerry’s Downfall and the general use of this and other wetland areas as corridors for power and other infrastructure.  
All wetland and waterway areas need to be identified and prioritised for protection and ultimate ‘enhancement’ as part of the River Recovery process, before the Logan Planning Scheme is formally adopted.
The proposed use of offsetting to build and secure corridors along the city’s waterways must also be discussed.
Advice and provision of sound ecological advice around cost effective strategies which will help maintain biodiversity values both during and beyond the restoration stage must be secured from experts in the field - outside of council eg .  Logan and Albert Conservation Association (LACA).
Postal address:
General comments: Use above information as a guide / suggestion for what you can say
Do you want feedback and preferred method.
If you require further information regarding this project or form, please contact council by:
Phone: (07) 3412 3412  Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Council website for this CONSULTATION requires people to ‘register’ which is a bit of a nuisance and may put you off because you have to fiddle around.  To get around this council staff person Britt Rogers is happy to take the submissions directly to her email, so perhaps you and others could just send  submissions to her -  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Council has done a great job with this recovery plan - aside from the reservations LACA mentions above.  We should tell them. Remember the summit from a few years ago? this is part of the outcome.

Koala Conservation in Logan - comment by Friday 16 May

Last Updated on 16 May 2014

 Logan City is home to a significant koala population and has one of the world’s largest koala conservation centres located at Daisy Hill Conservation Park. This facility is a Queensland state government conservation park. The social and economic value of koalas to our city and nation is difficult to quantify however, it is undoubtedly significant. This Koala Conservation Strategic Plan aims to ensure the long-term viability of koalas in Logan City and demonstrates Council’s commitment to koala conservation over the long term. How well does Logan do it now and will koalas in Logan and surrounding areas be protected by implementing this 10 year strategic plan 2013-2023?

                                     Have your say on the Koala Conservation Strategic Plan by completing the online survey before Friday 16 May 2014.

The link to this survey is  http://lcc-consult.objective.com/portal/environment__sustainability/lkcsp?tab=info

For more information you can email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  or phone 3412 44 91

Although there is no direct invitation - you can also email your submission to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. . Online process will probably close at 5pm. Please send any late submissions also. Remember to include name/s and address/es of submitter/s and signing is preferred. You can also email cThis email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

You will need to read this document  http://www.logan.qld.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0006/287691/2014-Logans-Koala-Conservation-Strategy.pdf to be able to comment on the 4 strategic outcomes - 28 page document with captivating images of koalas.

 In summary, the plan is based on achieving the following key strategic outcomes:

• SO 1 – Improved science of koala ecology and habitat requirements in Logan;

In Logan, koalas are most frequently sighted in the eastern suburbs of the city including Daisy Hill, Shailer Park, Carbrook, Priestdale and Cornubia. Residents of Greenbank, Logan Village, Browns Plains especially Berrinba Sanctuary, Jimboomba, Munruben, Mundoolan and others will not agree.

It is important to note that current data on koala presence in Logan is mostly anecdotal and not a result of targeted scientific surveys. Council has little knowledge of koalas from former Beaudesert areas and as there have been no funded onground field studies, residents reported sightings are regarded as "anecedotal". 
• SO 2 – Increased quality protected koala habitat in Logan;

To achieve a net increase in koala habitat in the city and South East Queensland it is essential that a regional approach is undertaken and areas of koala habitat are connected through ecological corridors.

• SO 3 – Improved koala safety and health;

Logan City is expected to grow by more than 200,000 residents over the next 20 years and beyond. Logan City will continue to be one of the fastest growing areas in Queensland with dramatically increasing urban development and increasing pressure on the natural environment and koala habitat.

• SO 4 – Increased positive community engagement and awareness of koala conservation actions.

To achieve the strategic outcomes of this Plan it is essential that it is supported by an active, engaged and supportive community including residents, land owners, businesses and the Development industry  

 The online survey basically asks you to answer same 4 questions about each outcomes

1.       Are these actions the right actions to ....                                

2.       Are there any actions that need to be changed to .....

3.       Are there any additional actions you think we should be doing?

4.       What ideas do you have to support the delivery of these actions?

and finally any extra comments. Please consider a submission regarding any point / points you are concerned about.

These could include - 

Importance of using best possible and latest mapping. ie SEQCatchments Koala Habitat Map for  Logan - with Regrowth map and Observations, Genome Barrier and  Pinch Point Maps as has been done for Brisbane City Council.

Koala policies, programs, zones, map layers  and legislation  should be included in town plan  not merely as offsets opportunities

Undertake and publish Natural Areas Management Plans 

Invest in Koala Research 

Use citizen scientist programs like Great Koala Count to track sightings and include results in mapping

Develop stronger land stewardship programs with community to reward incentivise residents to retain and extend bushland habitat.

Place higher value on existing habitat with existing koala populations being retained in perpetuity for wildlife ie such areas are not suitable for industry and housing developments. Rezoning of such land at Browns Plains for conservation is critical if Logan wants to consider itself - and be considered by others as a "proactive koala-friendly" community

Educating community on living with wildlife - especially koalas has to be a high priority to remove any misconceptions that exist 


Koalas in SEQ are not protected and there in no connectivity not in Logan's new planning. The new Queensland Government SPP is a disaster for koalas and wildlife.

DECLARATION as ENDANGERED is needed. It won't happen unless community makes it happen!!

Please send your submission asap 

Your choice to complete online - or write your signed submission and send to

Chief Executive Officer
Logan City Council
PO Box 3226
Logan City DC Qld 4114

or email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

While both Logan and state government support an OFFSET scheme to "pay for" koala habitat to be cleared, neither Logan and Albert Conservation Association LACA nor Australian Koala Foundation AKF supports a general offset policy,

LACA's document http://www.laca.org.au/images/Planning_Scheme_Environmental_Submission_writing_kit.5points_docx.pdf also has some points relevant to Koala Conservation Strategy

The Australian Koala Foundation has recently requested a change to Australia’s environmental offset system, which poses serious issues for the conservation of koalas. The current system allows the government to approve environmentally damaging building projects if the business pledges to make up for destruction of native habitat by providing similar habitat elsewhere. Deforestation has led to the decline in the genetic diversity of koalas, but has also increased disturbance, injury, stress, and competition for food or territory due to overcrowding. It also creates barriers that prevent koalas from roaming for mating purposes, and the addition of another habitat does not even ensure that koalas will migrate there.


The koala is considered a threatened species in three parts of Australia, but their habitat is being destroyed by removing irreplaceable foliage that they depend on. The destruction of native habitat creates major gaps or breaks across the koalas’ landscape. A recent study from the University of Queensland revealed the importance of maintaining at least 30% of forest land to ensure the koalas' survival. Results point to the importance of the species access to wide landscapes, because habitat isolation can threaten genetic diversity which is necessary to conservation. Researchers found that genetic diversity “dropped rapidly” once the country’s amount of forest land fell under 30%. It is important that the Australian government take measures to increase the amount of forest land to a level suitable for conserving the rapidly declining species koalas.

 Many thanks to all the wildlife carers who rescue rehabilitate and release - from turtles to owls to koalas and kangaroos. They are always confronted with issue - where to they release and they are required to relocate to home territories of each animal. Will this endanger the wildlife - koala or other again. Lets reduce the risk by having a good conservation strategy - with teeth - in our town planning. Up to us to ask. Council does not have all the answers.


Environmental Submission writing kit for the Draft Logan Planning Scheme

Last Updated on 28 April 2014

 Environmental Submission writing kit for the Draft Logan Planning Scheme

due: deadline 5 pm Wednesday 30 April

Logan and Albert Conservation Association have 5 key concerns relating to the strategic planning that underlies the planning documents. We have explained the background behind each concern and make a recommendation for how those values - which are core values for our organisation - could be improved. Please read the following document to read all 5 points. The first 3 points are covered in the pdf document lower down the page. Regional biodiversity corridors and Priority Development Areas (PDAs) are the last 2 points added.


Do not include attachments (which would have to be digitally signed) unless you need to

Submissions must be properly-made for Council to consider your feedback. A properly made submission means:

•          You must include the full name and address of each person making the submission

•          Submissions must state the grounds for the submission and the facts or circumstances to support the grounds. See text in red below

Apart from email submissions (preferred)  written submissions - posted letters or email attachments, but NOT emails, must be signed by each person making the submission

So the simplest and best option for submissions is to direct email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Submissions can also be made Via post to Logan City Council, PO Box 3226, Logan City DC, Qld 4114, but have to arrive by 5 pm Wednesday 30 April

 Significant environmental concerns to comment on include

Koala mapping not included as statutory overlay in Draft Planning Scheme

Offsetting and the Council’s flawed Ecological Significance scoring

Limited locally significant flora and fauna mapping

Background information for each is provided to explain why Logan and Albert Conservation LACA and others are concerned.

1. Koala mapping not included as statutory overlay in Draft Planning Scheme

Background: While out of date mapping of Koala habitat does appear in the Draft Planning Scheme, this is not legally supported mapping (ie not statutory) and therefore has little chance of being defended in a court challenge. 

This is because, while the Draft Logan Planning Scheme (DLPS) must adhere to the State Government’s ‘Single State Planning Policy (SPP)’, there is no requirement in this for the Council to incorporate statutory Koala mapping in the planning scheme.
Therefore there is no legal support in the planning scheme for the protection of koalas in the DLPS. This again underscores how hollow the State Government’s concerns are for protecting the environment – where they say they will ‘protect’ but then provide legislation which is toothless. However, by putting a comment on this into your submission you help send a strong message to both Council and the State Government that the community wants stronger legal protection for Koalas and their habitat in Queensland. 
2. Offsetting and the Council’s flawed Ecological Significance scoring
Background: So-called ‘offsetting’ is now a core part of State Government ‘environmental’ policy. It is emerging as their principle propaganda tool around environment issues in Qld. Yet it is a ‘sleight-of-hand’ process that results in a net loss of biodiversity each time it occurs. It is a way of soothing concern over development in critically sensitive areas by promising that something will be done in the future to balance (and somehow make acceptable) the loss of crucial wetlands, rainforest, reef etc. The State Government is now so chuffed about the righteousness of this idea that they are even pointing to the possibility of National Parks being ‘offset’ if a coal miner wants to take them out. The Federal Government supports this too. Five million tonnes of port dredge spoil dumped on the Great Barrier Reef will now be OK because Federal Minister Hunt has said this can offset by reducing the flows of sediment out of the Burdekin River – a vague promise into the future that will more than likely never happen in any real sense. ‘Environmental offsets’ can more accurately be called ‘environmental setbacks’. 
Council has devised its own ‘offsets’ policy based on ecological scores for each property across the Logan landscape.  To do this they have created an ‘ecological significance’ map which assigns ecological values to various ecosystems across Logan. The trouble is most of this was ‘desk top’ – based on mapped and recorded data that was already 7 or more years old. There is little inclusion of fauna and flora survey data and other knowledge that has been recorded for Logan since 2007. We have found significant flaws, deficiencies and anomalies in the Council’s ecological scoring, which will be directly used to calculate the ‘cost’ of an offset to a developer. As a result, there are potentially many high biodiversity areas in Logan that score very low (therefore cheap to offset) just because amazing new data since 2007 hasn’t been included.  We cannot support the concept of offsetting and we certainly should not, by omission, give tacit approval to an offset policy that is based on flawed and deficient data.
3. Limited locally significant flora and fauna mapping
Background: Logan has responsibility for a number of rare and endangered plant and animal species that require attention through the Planning Scheme if they are to survive the next decade on our watch. So it is alarming that the Draft Planning Scheme has only mapped two ‘locally significant’ threatened plant species (Gossia gonoclada and Melaleuca irbyana), and one ecosystem type (vine forest) as worthy of special consideration under the new Planning Scheme, which will be operative possibly until the mid 2020s.
By then it may be too late to do anything about the vulnerable to extinction Persicaria elatior, a flowering plant that is now only recorded in tiny numbers in one site in Logan City and nowhere else in mainland Queensland. And it may be too late to provide tree hollow homes in old growth trees for the Powerful Owl, which helps control flying fox numbers.   And the endangered Glossy Black Cockatoo may not find any of its special food trees left anywhere in Logan. And rapid clearing of essential habitat for the endangered Quoll will mean this very special marsupial may needlessly disappear from this part of Australia, on our watch.  And of course there is the Koala. 
Mapping the location of the essential habitat of these plants and animals across Logan adds another check on reckless clearing of sites critical to the survival of these species. It is not enough for the planning scheme to recognise only two plant species with special mapping - there are a number of other plants and animals that need ongoing layers of protection provided by statutory mapping in the Planning Scheme.
 Open the following document

Here you find an example of what you can write:  

 In your email submission, you could copy and paste the text in red below the background, or say the same things in your own words.

Make sure you include the second part -  ‘My proposed change to the Draft Logan Planning Scheme’

It is important that you make a submission to protect the biodiversity of our region - the flora and fauna - endangered threatened rare and common that together with our waterways make SOUTH EAST QUEENSLAND  the special ecological region that it is.




Are your values reflected in Logan's planning?

Last Updated on 28 April 2014

Logan's draft planning scheme has been widely publicised online and at libraries. Comments /submissions

close Wednesday 30 April 2014 5pm

A full calendar of events was / is provided at this link http://www.logan.qld.gov.au/planning-and-building/planning/draft-planning-scheme/upcoming-draft-logan-planning-scheme-events. It is unfortunate that most of these opportunities were between 9am - 5pm, challenging for those working a fulltime day job.


“Planner Desk” may still be available at Council customer service centres and council's administration building.

A form for your completion is available from council's website. For your convenience this is the form LoganPaperSubmissionForm2014.pdf

You can have your say on the draft planning scheme by writing a submission.  You can make a submission: 
  • Online: www.logan.qld.gov.au/draftplanningscheme [ not really as pdf has to be printed out - filled in - and posted - or scanned and emailed]
  • Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  
  • Post: PO BOX 3226, Logan City DC, Qld 4114 
  • There are blank forms available at Logan City Council admin and all /most libraries.
There is space then to write your submission - about half a page - or attach extra pages. So your submission can be as short and succinct or longer and more detailed as you wish.
It is important to note that for
a submission to be considered it must: 
- be signed by each person making the submission; 
- be received on or before 5.00pm on 30 April 2014; 
- state the name and address of each person making the submission; 
- state the grounds of the submission, and facts and circumstances relied on in support of these grounds. [preferably]
Our values are reflected in our submissions.
As a conservation organisation  Logan and Albert Conservation Association LACA  has as our guiding value the protection and further enhancement of places and species of environmental significance - locally nationally and globally.
To this end the policy of OFFSETS is not supported at any level. It is disappointing that the Ecological Significance mapping and score system is not readily accessable. . This 'policy' allows for an area to be cleared for development - shopping centres - housing - sporting field - road - water pipeline - electricity - even schools. depending on the score a 'replacement' cost is calculated. No offset can mitigate against loss of old growth habitat trees.
The Planning scheme policy 3–Environmental management contains the information. Read it at  http://www.logan.qld.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0009/286974/Planning-scheme-policy-3-Environmental-management.pdf
Did you know there were f
ive reference groups have been established to provide feedback on the draft planning scheme. Details and minutes of these meetings can be accessed from the links below: 
  • Community Services Reference Group
  • Development and Industry Reference Group
  • Environmental Reference Group
  • Local Residents Reference Group - decided not to make joint / collaborative submission. 
  • Rural and Agricultural Reference Group
  • http://www.logan.qld.gov.au/planning-and-building/planning/draft-planning-scheme/community-and-industry-reference-groups
  • Lots to read if you are concerned. It is assumed that most residents / submitters will be interested in their own area and this may reduce what you choose to read. It is almost impossible for non planning / development industry people to understand the significance of all documents.

It is noteworthy that all planning schemes have to be accepted by Queensland State Government and also align with South East Queensland Regional Plan which is currently being reviewed with the new plan to be completed by the end of 2014.

 How will the new regional plan work?

The Queensland Government is reforming the planning and development system to ensure the state’s continued growth and prosperity. In the context of the review of the regional plan for South East Queensland, the most relevant of these
reforms is the

The Queensland Government is reforming the planning and development system to ensure the state’s continued growth and prosperity. In the context of the review of the regional plan for South East Queensland, the most relevant of these
reforms is the single State Planning Policy (SPP).Two pages worth reading at  http://www.dsdip.qld.gov.au/resources/factsheet/regional/seq-regional-plan-fs5.pdf


Remembering Tomorrow

Last Updated on 21 March 2014


Rise-and-rise-of-zombie-politics BarryFitzpatrick Econews Dec2013Discussing his memoir Remembering Tomorrow, veteran political activist Michael Albert talks about the stages in public awareness that gave rise to the 60s anti-establishment movements. These included growing realisation that corporations were often crooks and environmental plunderers, governments were not always honourable, politicians told lies, many women suffered physical and sexual abuse, lawyers did not always represent justice, and birds were disappearing.

Sound wearily familiar?

But for people living through the Pollyanna world of the 50s and 60s this was shocking. Environmental movements, along with feminist, black power and anti-war campaigns, quickly sprouted in response. There was growing conviction that things had to change - or be changed.

In the 21st century this is broken. Mass ecocide, corporate corruption, political impropriety and sexual abuse routinely fill-out the 24 hour news cycle.  Contrasting the present with the past, Michael Albert believes the average citizen’s propensity now for coping with these daily horrors can be neatly summed up in the statement “I don’t want to hear this because I can’t do anything about it”.

 Which, as a self-defence strategy, is tantamount to adopting a state of corpse-like torpor. 

 But it is voter torpor that has provided fertile ground for backward looking conservatives and development interests wanting to exploit a politically numb and easily spooked public. Following Tony Abbott’s margin-of-one-vote arrival as leader of the Liberal party, and with the willing support of a small army of shock-jocks and lobotomised journalists, conservative spinners and strategists in Australia began the earnest task of eating the brains of their target audiences, cheered on of course by industry interests.  The objective was to create a receptive Australia where it would remain possible in the 21st century (as economist John Quiggan puts it in his book Zombie Economics) for dead ideas to continue to ‘walk among us’ – at least until all the coal gets pulled out of the ground.  

And certainly, when it comes to zombies -  defined variously as ‘animated corpses raised by magical means’ or ‘one who looks or behaves like an automaton’ - who better than zombie puppet-master Abbott to raise the dead and breathe some sort of life back into the decaying political ideas of the extreme right?    

So what is the game plan employed by government and industry to keep the undead in a state of unthinking about environmental threats such as climate change and coal ports on the Great Barrier Reef?



Last Updated on 21 March 2014

There have been some 450 ENVIRONMENTAL DISPUTES arising out of previous free trade agreements which include ISDS provisions similar to those proposed for the TPPA:
By the end of 2011, corporations like Chevron, Exxon Mobil, Dow Chemical, and Cargill had launched 450 investor-state cases against 89 governments, including the US, to fightcommon-sense environmental laws and regulations. Among these cases were challenges to bans on toxic chemicals, fracking, timber,mining regulations, programs that incentivised green jobs and renewable energy programs.

Recently Peru has been required to pay Renco the largest ever damages award of USD$ 4.2 billion for banning products that had contaminated the La Oroya, Peru environment and had poisoned 95% of children there. An incredible outcome protecting the polluter!!
The US Lone Star Mining company is currently using ISDS provisions in the North American Free Trade Agreement to sue the Canadian Quebec provincial government because it has suspended coal seam gas fracking pending a study of its environmental impact.
Ethyl vs Canadian Government 1998-99: US company Ethyl successfully challenged a Canadian ban on gasoline additive MMT which the Canadian government claimed was harmful to human health and the environment. The Canadian government agreed to withdraw the ban and pay Ethyl $13 million
On August 25, 2008, Dow AgroSciences LLC, a U.S. corporation, served a Notice of Intent to Submit a Claim to Arbitration under Chapter 11 of NAFTA, for losses allegedly caused by a Quebec ban on the sale and certain uses of lawn pesticides containing the active ingredient 2,4-D. The tribunal issued a consent award as the parties to the dispute reached a settlement
In the United States and Canada the reality is that federal governments are often willing to "lose" these cases in order to discipline provincial, state or municipal governments that have adopted progressive social and environmental policies.

The proposed TPP foreign investor privileges would provide foreign firms greater 'rights' than those afforded to domestic firms. This includes a 'right' to not have expectations frustrated by a change in government policy
In the US, the powerful corporate lobby position on the Australian Labor Government's position is, quote: 'American companies should be able to side-step the Australian legal system in the event of certain legal disputes'
Under ISDS rules, even when governments win, they often must pay for the tribunals' costs and legal fees, which average $8 million per case.
The TPP would expand the scope of policies that could be attacked. For example, in health, the office of the United States trade Representative has also proposed patenting surgical procedures - a move that would force Congress to change IP law and one that could force surgeons to obtain permission from patent-holders before performing surgery!
Australia is already experiencing the effects of ISDS provisions with Phillip Morris, having failed in Australia's High Court, now attacking Australia's cigarette labelling policy off-shore using a 1994 'Investment Agreement' with Hong Kong that contained ISDS provisions. This could cost Australia hundreds of millions of dollars.


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