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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2003 Week 9 Hansard (27 August) . . Page.. 3238 ..

MR HARGREAVES (continuing):

Mr Speaker, the Cooleman Ridge park care group, the Mount Taylor park care group and the Farrer Ridge park care group came together and won the Alcoa Landcare community group award. It is interesting, of course, that those ridges are almost a series of saddles, and I was pleased to see that the Mount Taylor park care group featured in that. Birdwatch Greening Australia won the Telstra country-wide Landcare research award. The bush friendly nursery scheme won the Landcare Australia local government award.

I was really chuffed, I have to say, Mr Speaker, when Lanyon High School won the Westpac Landcare education award. It's nice to see one of our schools actually compete and win this sort of recognition.

Dr and Mrs Griffin from Uriarra Station won the Rural Press Landcare primary producer award. Southern ACT catchment group won the Sensis Landcare catchment award, and Friends of Grasslands won the bush care nature conservation award. You'd almost expect the Friends of Grasslands to win something because they're just brilliant, in my view.

Mr Speaker, protecting the condition of our land and our water is a serious issue for the whole community. Our recent experience with the January bushfire and the continuing drought highlights the importance of commitment and direct involvement by the community, and I'd like to once again congratulate those winners.

I think one of the other things that struck me about Landcare, Mr Speaker-there are certainly some people that are paid employees of Landcare-was that, essentially, they're volunteers. Essentially, they're like us. What would we do on a Sunday morning or a Saturday morning, after or just before we've done the shopping? Do we go for a walk, do we go and play footy, do we go and watch footy? Why not go and plant a tree? Why not go down to the wetlands and clean up the plastic bags that are floating around. Loads of people come out on Clean Up Australia Day, and I'm encouraged to see loads of people come out for Landcare.

I ask the Assembly to raise the profile of the activities of Landcare. Indeed, if that occurs, then I will have been successful with this motion. As I say, I don't see this as a political footy; I don't see this as a table tennis game. I invite members who feel so inclined to support the work that Landcare does and to support the provision of awards to recognise the people who are leaders in these fields. Many of us do our little bit, but not too many of us are called for leadership roles in these things. You see the quality of our community, Mr Speaker, when you see the sorts of people that have taken out these awards. Mr Speaker, I commend the motion to the Assembly.

MRS DUNNE (11.35): Mr Speaker, I commend Mr Hargreaves for bringing this matter to the notice of the Assembly, as it is very important. I am glad that, as a recent convert to the virtues of Landcare, he is enthusiastic, and I hope that that enthusiasm will increase.

There are a few things I feel that I need to correct, Mr Speaker. Perhaps it was a bit rude of me to say "Der!"across the room, but it does say something about the environmental credentials of the Labor Party that one of its longstanding, elected members had not realised that Canberra is the biggest city inside the Murray-Darling Basin. This is the

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