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Helter smelter

THE Note has always been cautious about throwing stones in glass houses, but a missive from Liberal environment and climate change spokesperson Robyn McSweeney left us with no choice. Mrs McSweeney said she agreed with the Australian Workers Union – doesn’t politics create strange bedfellows – that there should be a delay in an emissions trading scheme to allow WA’s aluminium industry time to ready itself. “The government seems to have forgotten that we have aluminium smelters in the west and that these employ many regional people,” she said in a statement. Being good people we thought we’d point out that we don’t have an aluminium industry here. What we do have is refineries which supply alumina to smelters elsewhere, such as Victoria, that then make the aluminium. Its technical talk, we know, but it’s hard to score political points when you get that kind of detail wrong. Clearly the opposition spokesperson got half our point. We noted media releases were changed to reflect that we have an alumina industry, but it seems our point about having refineries, not smelters, was lost. You just can’t help some people.

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