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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2003 Week 13 Hansard (26 November) . . Page.. 4675..


MR STANHOPE (continuing):

about that in the context of the issues that are involved. It is a New South Wales water supply. At this stage the ACT does not even have a cap. There is no notion fully developed yet in relation to how we would trade water with New South Wales.

There is an awful lot of work being done in relation to all of these issues. Work is being done incrementally. We are working with New South Wales to develop a regional approach to catchment management. We are working with New South Wales at the moment in relation to some of those possibilities for enhancing an all-of-region storage capacity. For instance, New South Wales is now alive to the fact that Yass, with a most marginal and problematic water supply, would be perhaps interested in joining the ACT in some collaboration to ensure a water supply for Yass into the future.

These are issues that are all being discussed. We simply are not in a position in the water strategy that we have developed to deal now with some of the direct or more pressing issues in relation to water policy and strategy to go into detail in relation to each of those issues. Work has stated on each of them. Actew is about to complete a major piece of research in relation to the need, or the potential need, for additional water storage in the future-a decision that has not yet been made. When we make those decisions, of course we will be very open and very transparent about all of the issues you raise.

MS TUCKER: Mr Speaker, I ask the Chief Minister a supplementary question. Can you assure the Legislative Assembly that you will make available to the community and the Assembly a full environmental cost analysis of each option?

MR STANHOPE: Yes. We have no reason not to be fully open and transparent in this entire process. I think we are all aware, Ms Tucker, of the issues around the construction of any new major water supply facility for the ACT, whether it be a dam at Tennent or Corrie, whether it be a pipeline, whether it be some other option. You would know of the option that Paul Perkins has floated. He is something of a champion of the prospect of reusing water from the Lower Molonglo water treatment works by pumping it back into the Cotter catchment, allowing it to filter through the catchment back into our dams and for us to recycle in that way. Professor Perkins does not have, as I understand it, all that many disciples in relation to this proposal. It new, it is done in other places, it is innovative, it is challenging and perhaps it is a possibility.

As I say, that is the stage we are at in relation to this whole issue. None of these ideas, I think, should be dismissed at this stage or dismissed out of hand. But certainly we all know of the major environmental issues that any decision we take will raise for us. I think we are all aware of the vigorous community debate that we can expect around all of the costs of pursuing any of these options.

Ms Tucker: And downstream as well?

MR STANHOPE: Yes.

Civic Square

MRS CROSS: My question is to the Chief Minister, who is representing the minister responsible for public places, Mr Wood. Chief Minister, recently there have been announcements about revamping various sections of the Civic area. The City West plan


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