Page 629 - Week 02 - Thursday, 24 March 2022
enables us to shape a different future—for a patch of dirt, a local community and much more than that. When groups of people come together across the planet to undertake these actions, we see that local impacts contribute to a much bigger positive change.
It was inspiring to see the enthusiastic community involvement all along the way, including consultation with local primary schoolkids, who wanted tunnels and hiding places, as well as a bird habitat and water play. It was inspiring, too, to see how the community have engaged deeply with the country in which they live. This recognises not only what we can learn from First Nations wisdom in respect of caring for country but the obligations that we all have to land—the respect we must give it, as well as striving for a deeper understanding of how it connects with us and how we are nurtured by caring for country.
As it grows, the Watson micro-forest will contain trees, shrubs, climbers and ground covers, densely planted to create a mini-ecosystem that will have a cooling effect and dramatically improve the amenity of the area. It will capture carbon and, in its small way, help to mitigate climate change. It will create habitats for native animal species, promote the growth of particular plant species, enable the community to experiment with planting techniques, and test water harvesting and management strategies.
It will create a space that can nurture our bodies and our minds—a space for quiet contemplation, a space to move through as part of the landscape, a place to nurture and care for. It also provides new opportunities for play, learning, meeting and connecting.
Being part of the launch was an inspiration on so many fronts. It was fitting, too, that the event was held on World Rewilding Day. This is a relatively new day of global recognition that commenced last year and celebrates the act of helping nature to heal by restoring the species and the land it needs to thrive. I hope we will see many more similar projects coming to fruition. There are many more micro-forests in the planning and implementation phases. I hope more people come to understand just how vital this kind of work is for our future.
Advance Aus Ltd—interest group
MR PETTERSSON (Yerrabi) (4.18): I rise today to bring to the attention of all members in this place the recent political activity of the group known as Advance Australia, which has risen to prominence through its billboards in Canberra depicting the Chinese leader Xi Jinping voting for the Australian Labor Party. Rightly, these campaign tactics have been disavowed by many for undermining Australian national security and pandering to xenophobia. I, like all other good people, condemn it. There is no place for racism in our country or our politics and it is distressing to see these ads on our streets.
Somewhat fortunately, the algorithms of social media exclude me from the far-right echo chambers which this group and its messages seem to succeed in, which is why I was unaware of its activities until now. If you want to get a flavour for some of the things that this group campaigns for, here are a few good examples straight from its