Apr 1, 2004

Howard Government gives Grayndler no envirofund projects


MEDIA RELEASE: Anthony Albanese – 1 April 2004

The Government has announced a plan to start 765 Round One Envirofund projects with a total allotment of over $11 million, with just over $5 million of that total to be spent on water quality improvement projects.

Yet in all of the Government’s generosity they have failed to provide funding for any environmental projects in the Grayndler area. This includes a failure to provide additional funding for cleaning up of the Cooks River or the Harbour Foreshore.

I am extremely disappointed that the Federal Government has failed to allocate any funding, particularly given the damage to the environment caused by Sydney Airport.

The Government plans to concentrate on the four areas of Bushcare, Coastcare, Landcare and Rivercare.

The Government says that its goal in this program is to have a duel effect on each program location (each program is to have both a main and secondary objective). For example, The Government plans to sponsor a project which includes providing fencing along the Mulga Grasslands which will reduce the stock which impacts the Nebine Creek and the Darling River; thereby spending money on cleaning a river which suffers from pollution.

However, the Cooks River falls under three of these four categories. It compromises parts of 13 local councils but is not receiving any funding. It is one of the most polluted waterways in Australia and should be a priority of the Government.

Envirofund projects are the community element of The Government’s Natural Heritage Trust.