Polls measuring opposition to Gunns proposed pulp mill (October 2005 to July 2007)

October 2005 West Tamar Council elector poll

West Tamar Council held a voluntary elector poll with the question - are you in favour of the proposed pulp mill? 8700 voters responded. Results:

  • Yes 44%;
  • No 56%.

Source http://www.electoral.tas.gov.au/pages/LocalGovernment/LG2005/LG2005FirstPref/LG2005_WestTamar.htm     24 April 2007 TasPoll poll on support for the mill

TasPoll was commissioned by TAP to survey 1 000 Tasmanians in the northern 63 telephone district with the question - are you in favour of the current proposal to build a pulp mill in the Tamar valley? Results:

  • Yes 36.2%;
  • No 45.7%;
  • Don’t know 18.1%.
  • On a two answer preferred basis; yes = 44%, no = 56%.

Source www.tapvision.info

Analysis by Prof. Richard Herr, University of Tasmania re 24 April 2007 TasPoll results

Nearly half the residents of the 63 telephone district (45.7%) have expressed opposition to Gunns’ current proposal for a pulp mill in the Tamar Valley. Just over one third of the respondents (36.2%) say they favour the mill. Almost two in ten (18.1%) had not made up their mind or were unwilling to express an opinion.

Opponents may be disappointed that they did not secure an outright majority against the mill but, if the undecided were either excluded or distributed in the usual manner for polls, they would claim more than 55% of respondents against the mill. The mill’s supporters, on the other hand, would need more than 76% of the undecided responses to be able to claim a majority.

This result will disappoint the proponents of the mill since it demonstrates that all the efforts to sell the mill and its benefits to these residents have borne so little fruit. Educational campaigns, informational buses and the like have fallen well short of securing the widespread support that the Government and Gunns have alleged.

Although reasons for the decision behind the responses have not been solicited, the mill’s proponents will almost certainly seek to dismiss these results as motivated primarily by a “NIMBY” (not-in-my-back-yard) attitude rather than an opposition to the mill proposal itself.

In reality, the motivations of the respondents who opposed the proposed mill will include the gamut of complaints already in the public domain since the respondents come from across the northeast Tasmania region. The location, the approval process, the type of mill, access to timber resources and the like will certainly have all contributed in various degrees to this result. For further information: Richard Herr 03 6226 2335

    25 September 2006 EMRS poll on support for the mill


EMRS was commissioned by the Forest Industries Association of Tasmania to survey 1000 residents with the question - would you support the pulp mill if it met RPDC environmental standards? Results:

  • Yes 60%;
  • No 28 %;
  • Unsure 12%.
  • On a two answer preferred basis, yes = 67%, no = 33%.

Source Examiner newspaper.     April 2007 Polls measuring the impact on tourism

The Tourism Industry Council of Tasmania commissioned poll of 1000 Tasmanians to ask - which industry had made the biggest contribution to economic growth? Results:

  • Tourism was ranked in first place by 44% of respondents.
  • 51% of people believed tourism had the greatest potential to drive economic growth.

Australian Bureau of Statistics data for February 2007

  • Employment in cafes, restaurants and accommodation was 16 200.
  • Employment in forestry and logging was 3 900.
  • Direct employment in the whole Tasmanian tourism industry is 22 900.
  • Direct employment in wood and paper product manufacturing, logging and forestry is 7200 or less than a third of the number employed in tourism.

    25 July 2007 EMRS poll

The Tourism Industry Council Tasmania commissioned EMRS to poll accredited tourism operators from across the State about the potential impacts of the proposed pulp mill. 700 operators responded. Results:

  • 58 per cent believed the proposed pulp mill would have a negative effect on Tasmania’s brand;
  • 34 per cent believed the mill would have a negative effect on their business if it went ahead;
  • 75 per cent felt there should be an increase in national and international marketing to support the Tasmanian brand if it was found the mill had a negative impact on the industry.

Operators were concerned that compensation should be addressed, should the pulp mill negatively impact on Tamar Valley businesses. Source Tourism Industry Council of Tasmania.     May 2007 Secret State Government poll

A Sydney based polling company was commissioned by the Tasmanian State Government. Various questions were asked about the pulp mill. The specific questions and results have not been released, however.

Source community member reports.

    9 July 2007 WIN Television phone poll


WIN TV conducted a telephone poll asking interested members of the public to phone and register their answer to the question - do you think the pulp mill should proceed? More than 9000 responded. Results:

  • Yes 25.2%;
  • No 74.8%.

Source WIN television.