Oct 11, 2005

Campbell’s Alpine National Park proposal is all about politics

Campbell’s Alpine National Park proposal is all about politics

MEDIA RELEASE – ANTHONY ALBANESE MP

11 October 2005

Today’s proposal by the Environment Minister for a Greater Alpine National Park is more about politics than it is about protecting heritage or the environment.

On 10 June 2005, the Environment Minister announced emergency protection for cattle grazing in the Victorian Alpine National Park, despite expert advice that cattle grazing damages the unique alpine environment.

Since then, the Environment Minister has twice tried to get out of the political bog he made for himself by offering variations of the same proposal to the Victorian Government.

The Bracks Government wants to protect the alpine areas. It has not accepted Ian Campbells’ dodgy deals to allow cattle grazing in environmentally sensitive areas.

If the Howard Government was genuinely interested in protecting our alpine environment, they would work with the Bracks, Iemma and Stanhope Governments.

The National Parks Associations of Victoria, NSW and the ACT have an existing proposal for the creation of a Greater Alpine National Park that would assist with the process of World Heritage Listing.

This is yet another example of the Howard Government’s lack of respect for Australia’s heritage.

The Howard Government had a six month grace period to put Australia’s 16 World Heritage sites on the National Heritage List. That didn’t happen because the Environment Department didn’t understand their own legislation.

Only one Australian World Heritage site has been listed on the National Heritage List.

The Howard Government is confused and complacent when it comes to protecting our heritage.

The Howard Government will always put politics before protecting the environment.