Page 3487 - Week 12 - Tuesday, 31 October 2023

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Tuesday, 31 October 2023

MADAM SPEAKER (Ms Burch) (10.00): Members:

Dhawura nguna, dhawura Ngunnawal.

Yanggu ngalawiri, dhunimanyin Ngunnawalwari dhawurawari.

Nginggada Dindi dhawura Ngunnaawalbun yindjumaralidjinyin.

The words I have just spoken are in the language of the traditional custodians and translate to:

This is Ngunnawal Country.

Today we are gathering on Ngunnawal country.

We always pay respect to Elders, female and male, and Ngunnawal country.

Members, I ask you to stand in silence and pray or reflect on our responsibilities to the people of the Australian Capital Territory.

Leave of absence

Motion (by Mr Gentleman) agreed to:

That leave of absence be granted to Mr Pettersson and Mr Davis for this sitting week due to their attending a Commonwealth Parliamentary Association regional conference.

Environment—urban conservation areas—update

Ministerial statement

MS VASSAROTTI (Kurrajong—Minister for the Environment, Minister for Heritage, Minister for Homelessness and Housing Services and Minister for Sustainable Building and Construction) (10.03): I rise to provide the Assembly with an update on the work of the government in response to the motion about urban conservation measures that was proposed by Ms Clay and presented in the ACT Legislative Assembly on 2 August 2022.

This motion, led by Ms Clay, focuses on the protection, maintenance and enhancement of our urban conservation areas to benefit the ACT’s incredible native wildlife as well our community’s wellbeing. I thank Ms Clay for bringing the Assembly’s attention to this important environmental matter. While many of us enjoy our local urban parks for the wonderful recreational opportunities that they offer, it is easy to overlook the significant services that these areas provide to our city and our native flora and fauna.

Urban conservation areas, including protected areas in and around cities, are critical tools in maintaining biodiversity and a healthy, balanced ecosystem. Effectively managed areas provide ecosystem benefits that contribute to conservation goals and support human health, including building resilience to climate change, reducing flood risk, filtering air pollutants and providing clean drinking water.

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