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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1996 Week 1 Hansard (22 February) . . Page.. 231..


MINISTER FOR THE ENVIRONMENT, LAND AND PLANNING

LEGISLATIVE ASSEMBLY QUESTION

QUESTION NO. 88

Soil Quality Data

Mr Wood asked the Minister for the Environment, Land and Planning - in relation to soil quality -

(1) What data is collected, and by whom, to assess soil quality.

(2) What work is being done further to develop indicators for more accurate and comprehensive information.

(3) When will the Government provide the resources necessary for collected data to be electronically stored.

Mr Humphries - the answer to the Member's question is as follows:

(1) Soil quality data for the ACT has been collected by many organisations over many years. Recent soil profile and landform data have been collected for selected rural areas of the ACT. Data collected from these surveys includes soil depth, horizons, texture, colour, pH and classification, as well as slope, terrain type, degree of rockiness and evidence of erosion. From this data an indication of soil quality can be obtained. This survey data has been collected by the ACT Parks and Conservation Service. Other agencies within the Government also collect soil data for various purposes such as to determine the presence of contaminated sites.

(2) The 1995 Land Reference Group for the ACT State of the Environment Report (SOER) commenced development of indicators for the ACT which would provide a basis for determining changes in land quality. A summary of these indicators is contained the 1995 SOER (page 112). CSIRO and other organisations are also developing indicators to measure sustainability which may be useful for future assessments.

(3) Data is being transferred to electronic form as resources permit. The Government is keen to speed up this process and is looking at cost effective measures to expedite the process.


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