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Labor Policies

The Australian Labor Party Tasmanian Branch State Platform is a constantly evolving statement of principles and policies, underpinned by enduring

Labor values.

Tasmanian Labor Platform is made up of six chapters;

Growing Tasmania’s Economy

Maximising Tasmania’s Resources

Caring for Tasmanians

Educating for Tasmania’s Future

Strong Responsible Government

Valuing our Natural and Cultural Resources

Resources Policy






1. Labor believes Tasmania’s exploration, mining and minerals processing sector is a vital and lasting component of our economy.

2. Supporting new mines that have undergone a rigorous state and Commonwealth approval process.

3. Labor recognises Tasmania is one of the most highly and diversely mineralised places on earth.

4. Labor recognises the need to grow a sustainable minerals industry that creates jobs for Tasmanians and wealth for our state.

5. Labor supports new investment in historic mining projects to create jobs and improve our environment.

6. Labor believes “Minerals Resources Tasmania (MRT)” and Tasmanian Minerals and Energy Council plays a critical role in identifying, promoting and managing our mineralised assets.

7. Labor will work “facilitated through Minerals Resources Tasmania” with Tasmanian Minerals and Energy Council and industry to ensure all past, current and future mine sites are fully rehabilitated.

8. Labor believes Workplace Health and Safety is the highest priority.

9. Labor recognises the need for Unions and Business to work together with each other on WHS issues. 10. Labor will work with industry and Unions to achieve our shared goal of zero work related illnesses and injuries in Tasmania.

11. Labor will work with industry to ensure the protection of the safety, health and welfare of workers in the mining industry as well as the populations living in proximity to their operations.

12. Labor believes in a sensible balance between land access, industry development, environmental impacts and community wellbeing.

13. Labor recognises the need for all stakeholders to be consulted in any developments or environment impacts at a community level

14. Labor will work with the industry to manage the rising challenges of climate change, emissions reduction and energy efficiency.

15. Labor believes that ‘fracking’ unnecessarily threatens Tasmania’s reputation as a producer of clean, fresh produce and is not consistent with the aspirations of our rural communities.

16. Labor recognises it is unlikely that Tasmania has economically viable coal seam gas or unconventional hydrocarbon resources. Tasmania’s only known identified area of potential resource is located in the southern central Midlands and covers an area of high-value agricultural land that is subject to significant irrigation investment.

17. Labor supports a permanent ban on hydraulic fracturing (fracking) for the purposes of hydrocarbon extraction.

18. Labor will continue to support closely regulated hydraulic extraction for the purposes of geothermal energy production in appropriate locations.

19. Encouraging greater exploration by developing incentives in partnership with proponents and the Tasmanian Minerals and Energy Council

20. Investigation of legislative tools that could be used to protect approved mines from vexatious protest activity

21. Ensuring Tasmania has the right infrastructure in place such as further Burnie Port development to allow for greater efficiencies in the movement of mineral products



22. Labor strongly supports Tasmania’s sustainable native forest industry and the thousands of regional jobs across the state that depends on it.

23. Labor believes in securing market access, guaranteeing wood supply and building broad community support for the timber industry

24. Tasmanian Labor supports the 2019 policy developed by Federal Labor to grow Tasmania’s forest industry.

25. Labor notes the policy recognised that the Tasmanian timber industry needs long term certainty and resource security.

26. Labor supports the national Regional Forest Agreement (RFA) Framework, including the Tasmanian RFA that was extended last year, as the best way to balance the social, economic and environmental benefits that flow from the sustainable management of our native forests.

27. Labor also believes Tasmania now has the appropriate balance between timber production and conservation of its forests.

28. Labor does not support the establishment of any new reserves such as a Tarkine National Park, Tarkine World Heritage Area nor the transfer of any other timber production forests into reserves.

29. Labor believes decisions about the management of the state forest resource must be led by the State Government in partnership with industry subject to the requirements of the Tasmanian Regional Forest Agreement and the EPBC Act as they apply.

30. Labor believes there are huge opportunities to grow our fibre industries: timber, wood products, furniture, paper products manufacturing, as well as developing newer materials like carbon fibre, light-weight materials, bio-products and advanced polymers.

31. Labor believes the industry will not meet its future growth potential if it cannot obtain the resources it needs.

32. Labor supports a further expansion of Tasmania’s plantation forest resource to create more jobs and inject millions into the Tasmanian economy as part of a national goal to achieve an additional 400,000 hectares of new plantations. 

33. Labor supports the development of a National Forestry Strategic Plan, to support the growth of a more sustainable and prosperous forestry industry.

34. Labor supports the removal of the Carbon Farming Initiative (CFI) water rule, a policy vital for the sustainability of the forestry industry that currently is a barrier to the expansion of the industry in Tasmania. 35. Labor supports the establishment of regional forestry hubs in the north, north west and south.

36. Labor supports reform of the National Forest Industry Advisory Council by broadening its membership to include broader industry and worker representation.

37. Labor supports the restoration of proper Commonwealth and State relationships by re-establishing the COAG process for the Standing Council on Primary Industries.

38. Labor supports providing funding for forestry and forest products industry worker safety initiatives.

39. Labor supports providing funding to address identified skill shortages in the forest and forest products industry.

40. Labor supports Regional Forest Agreements that are based on the best available science as it applies to the proper consideration of social, economic and environmental factors.

41. Labor supports the expansion of export opportunities by working with industry to improve trading opportunities for the wood and paper products sectors.

42. Labor recognises the role of bio-energy and bio-mass as a renewable resource and work with the forestry industry to ensure bioenergy plays a responsible role in Tasmania’s future renewable energy economy.

43. Labor supports investigating whether state legislation can be used to ensure Australian Standards are applied when local manufactured plywood and engineered wood products are being considered in construction projects.

44. Labor believes Tasmania’s forest management and practices are world leading.

45. Labor understand that a wood-first policy would encourage the use of timber as a construction material in public projects. This would allow for the further development of wood processing technology such as CLT (cross laminated timber) to compete on a commercial basis with prefabricated concrete and steel.

46. Labor recognises it is important the application of the Forest Practices Code leads to sustainable forest practices.

47. Labor believes Sustainable Timbers Tasmania should remain as a stand-alone entity responsible for management of production forests.

48. Labor supports the attainment and retention of Forest Stewardship Council certification for public native forest management and harvesting in Tasmania.

49. Labor recognises Sustainable Timber Tasmania needs to maintain the capacity to employ world leading forest scientists to ensure the sustainable management of production forests.

50. Labor believes Sustainable Timbers Tasmania’s capacity to fight bush fires and maintain forestry roads is vital, and has been eroded by the Liberal Government’s cuts.

51. Labor will facilitate new, regionally-based investment projects that add value to our forests and forest products and create jobs, including research and development into alternative uses for forest residue. This includes exploring innovative opportunities to use genuine forest residues to generate thermal energy in place of fossil fuels.

52. Labor supports the nomination of a Tasmanian Government representative to the International Union for Conservation of Nature to ensure we are well represented in discussions over land use and the Tasmanian Wilderness World Heritage Area.

53. Labor supports the integration of tourism initiatives into multiple use planning for our forests.

54. Labor supports research to better understand how Tasmania’s forests contribute to the State’s carbon balance.

55. Labor believes in the economic, cultural and brand value of Tasmania’s special species timber.

56. Labor recognises the importance of specific policies to support special timber craftspeople.

57. Labor recognises the importance of an ongoing supply of timber to the woodcraft industry.

58. Within existing legislative frameworks, Labor will investigate the creation of new special species timber banks for the boat building and craft industries to provide greater certainty of supply to the industry.

59. Labor supports research that minimises the environmental and health impacts of regeneration burns.



60. Labor believes Tasmania’s abundance of clean energy provides significant advantages to support existing and attract new industries that create high quality, full time jobs.

61. Labor recognises the potential for greater utilisation of sustainably sourced and genuine biomass residues for the generation of thermal energy.

62. Labor supports the development of further renewable energy to protect our energy intensive industries, provide energy security in times of drought and enhance the case for a second Bass Strait interconnector. 63. Labor supports the development and implementation of new energy storage technologies, including battery storage, hydrogen and more strategic utilisation of existing water storages.

64. Labor supports low interest loans for commercial scale solar installations and community solar grids. This will allow more homes and businesses to benefit directly from behind the meter renewable energy installations.

65. Labor encourages exploration for the identification of geothermal energy hotspots.

66. Labor supports the development of micro-grids and community solar hubs as a means to allowing individual communities to harness renewable energy and potentially reduce their power bills.

67. Labor believes electricity should be accessible to all Tasmanians at the lowest possible cost.

68. Labor recognises full retail competition in the Tasmanian electricity market, and therefore choice for all customers, will contribute to the lowest sustainable electricity bills for customers.

69. Labor will continue to support the provision of concessions to assist lower income households in meeting their utility bills.

70. Labor will provide information and advice to small businesses and low income households to encourage energy efficiency.

71. Labor recognises Tasmania’s renewable energy expertise is highly sought-after and therefore should be retained and enhanced.

72. Labor will ensure the State’s core electricity generation and network assets remain in public ownership. 73. Labor believes Entura and its skilled staff should remain in Tasmania so that they can be fully utilised in the pursuit of new renewable energy opportunities.

74. Labor recognises staff within Hydro Tasmania’s consulting arm, Entura have provided expert advice on renewable energy developments right around the world.

75. Continue working with Entura to ensure there is a growth strategy that focuses on energy security and economic returns. Energy growth, security and development that benefits the Tasmanian economy.

76. Maintain ownership of Hydro Tasmania’s mainland retailer, Momentum.

77. Empower TasNetworks to work with renewable energy storage developers to future-proof their network and assets and take advantage of technological advances in renewable energy generation and storage.

78. Labor believes electric vehicles represent both a new industry and an industry enabler for Tasmania.

79. Labor recognises the opportunity for Tasmania to lead the way in electric transport technology.

80. Labor supports the roll out of a carefully planned network of electric vehicle charging stations and the purchase of electric vehicles in the government fleet.

81. Labor recognises rather than being seen as a threat to the business, new energy storage systems – based on batteries or hydrogen fuel cells – can complement the storage capabilities of our existing hydro system and can be deployed to strengthen our networks.

82. Labor supports private enterprise to facilitating the deployment of hydrogen technologies in the State and establishing supply chains that will enable us to seize on these new opportunities. 83. Support the installation of hydrogen refuelling infrastructure and a trial fleet of fuel cell buses and service trucks for Metro, councils and Government Business Enterprises to guarantee sufficient demand for these assets during the initial years of operation.

84. Labor believes a cost-effective secure energy supply can be enhanced by generation at the community or premises level where this contributes to delivering an efficient and cost effective network and consumer price outcome.

85. Labor recognises current regulations do not incentivise or support the development of community based energy generation.

86. Tasmanian Labor supports communities to generatetheir own energy needs in order to place downward pressure on prices.

87. Labor believes natural gas is a vital energy source for major industry, households and maintaining energy security.

88. Labor recognises gas users face major cost increases without coordinated policy responses at both a state and federal level.

89. Labor will continue to support the reticulation of natural gas to additional areas of the state where it is economical to do so.

90. Labor believes that the Tamar Valley Power Station is critical to Tasmania’s energy security.

91. Labor will investigate regulation of gas prices for household consumers based on the Western Australia model.

92. Labor believes Tasmania should aspire to become a centre of excellence for small scale, high value industry, advanced manufacturing and food production.

93. Labor recognises renewable energy investment will help attract complementary industries to the State, much in the same way as the wind turbine industry has seen growth in the past.

94. Labor supports the attraction of industry based on renewable energy and security of supply. New opportunities could include manufacturing hydrogen storage, electric charging stations and phased in public transport which maximises renewable energy.


Fisheries / Aquaculture

95. Labor believes Tasmania marine environment should be carefully managed to ensure the amenity , employment opportunities and environmental standards are maintained for current and future generations 96. Labor recognises the important economic and social contribution that marine farming, commercial and recreational fishing make to Tasmania’s regional and coastal communities, and supports the use of management strategies to sustain this contribution.

97. Labor believes an ecosystem-based approach to fisheries management based on the principles of ecologically sustainable development should be used.

98. Labor believes the use of management plans for the all sectors are important to monitor and maintain the sustainability of fisheries.

99. Labor recognises the need to support an expanding aquaculture industry, subject to appropriate environmental controls, to produce and export more of Tasmania’s world class salmon and create regional jobs.

100. Labor will work with and support industry to achieve international environmental certifications from bodies such as the Aquaculture Stewardship Council.

101. Labor supports the development of a balanced strategy that includes the Tasmanian Marine Protected Areas Strategy whilst providing fair and equitable access and appropriate infrastructure to all those with interest in fish and fishing.

102. Labor supports research and assessment of Tasmania’s fisheries and their habitats.

103. Labor will work closely with the Australian Government to ensure that Tasmania’s fisheries are not detrimentally impacted by offshore fishing practices or other activities such as seismic testing.

104. Labor believes the Environment Protection Authority needs to be adequately resourced to meet its obligations in respect to all aspects of commercial and recreational fishing.

105. Labor will work closely with industry to articulate its long term plan for the continuation and growth of the aquaculture industry in Tasmania, in particular developing farming practices that minimise environmental impact.

106. Labor will continue to work with industry to protect the Tasmanian marine environment from pests and diseases.

107. Labor will ensure fisheries are included as part of Labor’s Primary Industries and Forestry Industry Advisory Council

108. Labor will support the Tasmanian seafood industry by delivering a trial of country of origin labelling for seafood in the food services sector.


Recreational Fishing

109. Labor’s ongoing support for Tasmania’s marine and freshwater recreational fishers will be further achieved by:

(a) investing in infrastructure such as improved boat ramps, parking, jetties and other facilities

(b) in consultation with the recreational sector review all recreational fishing licence fees and investigate new ways to give recreational fishers a better say in freshwater and marine fisheries management decisions

(c) further resource the Inland Fisheries Service to finally eradicate European Carp from Tasmania, rehabilitate Lake Sorell and also provide for increased opportunities for trout fishing in Tasmania.


Climate Change

110. Labor recognises climate will continue to affect the agricultural, forestry and fisheries sectors.

111. Labor acknowledges climate modelling suggests volume and patterns of rainfall will alter over time and rising sea temperatures will impact upon the marine environment.

112. Labor notes climate modelling suggests that some areas of Tasmania will see positive effects for farm production and there will be some areas of Tasmania negatively impacted, primarily due to water retention rates.

113. Labor believes greater support for research is also needed to give our agricultural producers the strategies and tools to deal with climate change. Labor also believes similar research is needed from our marine and freshwater environments

114. Unlike the Hodgman Government, Labor will strongly lobby the Commonwealth for greater investment in climate change research and its impact upon our resource based industries.

115. Labor recognises this is a national issue that needs national leadership.



Primary Industries

116. Labor recognises water is a valued commodity and one Tasmanian farmers can access.

117. Labor led the development of Tasmanian Tranche I and II irrigation schemes and again led the way calling for the Commonwealth Government to properly fund all Tranche III irrigation projects.

118. Labor notes the failure of the Hodgman Government to ensure the Commonwealth properly investigate all Tranche III Tasmanian Irrigation projects.

119. Labor recognises that for future primary industries growth and agricultural security we need to work with Tasmanian Irrigation, the TFGA, industry groups and other stakeholders to identify and investigate:

(a) Ways to protect producers from drought and develop strategies to deal with drought

(b) The potential removal of any restrictions on the development of on farm water storages

(c) Keeping the cost of irrigation water affordable for the sector

(d) Tranche IV irrigation projects

(e) Ensuring a quality supply of water by reducing pollution 120. Labor will investigate current regulation/legislation that restricts the development of farm water storage systems other than those required to protect the environment

121. Labor will work with Tasmanian Irrigation to ensure that irrigation water is affordable, and that the cost of irrigation water does not become a brake on further investment and development.



122. Labor believes that all Tasmanians have the right to access a clean, affordable supply of reticulated water where possible as a priority. Where households are unable to access the current system, Labor will support alternative water catchment equipment.

123. Labor recognises that Tasmania requires significant ongoing investment in water and sewage infrastructure.

124. Labor will continue working with Federal, State and Local Government stakeholders to fund the process of structural water and sewerage infrastructure reform.

125. Labor believes that improving the conservation of water requires solutions at a state, regional and household level.

126. Labor recognises that drought and climate change threaten the supplies of water in Tasmania.

127. Labor supports equitable catchment management regimes for water use and allocation.

128. Labor will encourage water authorities to utilise grey water for appropriate uses.

129. Labor will encourage the development and adoption of on-site systems for households and businesses to increase their water storage, conservation and recycling and reduce their water usage.

130. Labor will work with industry to reduce pollution of Tasmania’s waterways to levels that avoid significant adverse impact on Tasmania’s land, fresh water and marine environments.

131. All Tasmanians have the right to a clean affordable supply of reticulated water and Labor remains committed to working with key stakeholders to ensure this basic right is achieved



132. Labor believes agriculture plays a critical role in Tasmania’s economy including its significant contribution to employment, exports and growth.

133. Labor recognises that a strong agriculture sector relies on its ability diversify and adapt to changing markets and environmental conditions.

134. Labor will develop effective marketing strategies that capture and respond to information about national and international market trends, concentrating on changing consumer preferences, and will pay particular attention to capturing opportunities to market agricultural products to global markets.

135. Labor recognises the importance of a properly resourced biosecurity system that addresses the pest and disease risk across the biosecurity continuum (pre-barrier, barrier and post barrier)

136. Labor supports the need for ongoing our clean , green image through strict primary production food safety laws and the moratorium on commercial release of genetically modified food crops and animals into the environment

137. Promote ongoing, effective stewardship of environmental values on private land.

138. Labor supports world –leading animal welfare standards in food production, including restrictions on sow stall and cage-egg production, and will assist industry to adapt to changing consumer preferences in this area.

139. Labor will continue to build community partnerships to improve the capacity and confidence of rural and regional areas.

140. Labor recognises the need for a properly funded animal welfare inspectorate service.

141. Labor believes Tasmania-specific research, development, extension, education and evaluation are important to support Tasmania’s unique agricultural sector.

142. Labor will support organisations who play a vital role in the care and wellbeing of all animals, whilst continuing to educate the community on the expectations of Animal welfare.

143. Labor recognises the need to have trained employees is vital to the success of small and large business operating in the Agriculture industry.

144. Labor supports the development an employment plan that will provide opportunities for Tasmanians, whilst supporting farmers and their industry. This will include discussion around transport, accommodation, skills and subsidies available to both the employer and the employee.

145. Labor believes climate change will have a significant impact on agriculture into the future.

146. Labor recognises the need to look at continuing to support water and energy access that includes a plan to decrease the effects of climate change.

147. Labor will support the agricultural industry in dealing with the challenges and opportunities associated with climate change and climate policy.


Land Management

148. Labor will consider a full and proper review of crown land services is warranted to ensure it operates in an open and transparent way but is also properly resourced to do the best job it can on behalf of Tasmanians. Such a review could also look at future opportunities for the use of crown land.

149. Labor believes in developing a terms of reference for any such review it is vital all stakeholders have input.

Recreational Fishing
Climate Change
Primary Industries
Domestic Commercial
Land Management
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