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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1998 Week 6 Hansard (1 September) . . Page.. 1644 ..

MR SMYTH (continuing):

Our targets commit us to stabilise ACT emissions at 1990 levels by the year 2008 and then reduce that level of emissions by 20 per cent by the year 2018. Congratulations to the previous Minister, Mr Humphries, who announced these targets at the World Local Government Leaders Summit last November, are in order. The targets drew strong support from the Assembly at the time, and we seek that same level of continuing support for the draft strategy. Achieving these targets means developing measures that will have major impacts on reducing energy and fuel consumption by the ACT government, commercial and residential sectors.

This draft strategy describes the greenhouse problem and why we need to take action, details the sources and size of greenhouse gas emissions in the ACT and proposes a variety of energy efficiency measures that can be implemented to help meet the target. It also incorporates those nationally agreed measures relevant to the ACT from the national greenhouse strategy, which the Government endorsed in July this year. The greenhouse gas reduction target having been set, the challenge is to meet it. The answer to this challenge lies in a fully cooperative effort across government, industry and the community.

We now seek community input on the draft so that the most beneficial and effective measures can be identified and implemented. It is critical that the entire community work together to develop the initiatives it is willing to commit to, while maintaining the enviable quality of life and environmental reputation which the ACT has built. Community discussion will be critical to this strategy, so last Thursday I agreed to hold a joint public forum with the Conservation Council upon releasing this draft report, to explain the complexities of the greenhouse issue and discuss the measures proposed in the draft strategy.

The final strategy will be released next year after consideration of community input and full evaluation of the costs and benefits of the proposed measures. While a lengthy process, the energy efficiency measures that will be introduced will represent community consensus obtained by involving all the players. Some of the measures have already been implemented by the Government or are about to be implemented. We are about to introduce a new route and fee structure for ACTION buses to encourage people to transfer from car use to public transport.

A new independent Energy Advisory Service, funded jointly by the Government and the Master Builders Association, will be launched on Friday week. This exciting new community service will provide ACT residents with free, independent advice about home energy efficiency measures, including insulation, house design, retrofitting and efficient appliances. Other measures implemented by the Government include the requirement that all new residential buildings and major extensions must now have roof insulation. A requirement that the energy ratings of dwellings being sold must be disclosed to potential buyers will be introduced at the end of this year. Similarly, full disclosure will be required to prospective tenants.

The program of capturing methane from the Belconnen and Mugga Lane landfills to generate electricity is scheduled to start next year and will have a major impact on reducing our greenhouse gas emissions. ACTEW is examining alternative renewable energy production sources and the eco-workplace program for ACT government

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