Page 1429 - Week 05 - Wednesday, 6 April 2005

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effectiveness of the National Folk Festival’s efforts to reduce the amount of waste to landfill arising from the festival?

MR HARGREAVES: I am pleased to inform the Assembly that the National Folk Festival’s organisers were very successful in achieving their target of a 75 per cent recycling rate. Of the 14.22 tonnes of waste generated at the five-day event, 6.9 tonnes of commingled recyclables—paper, bottles, et cetera—3.56 tonnes of compost and 784 kilograms of used cooking oil were recovered. As a result, there was a significant reduction in the amount of waste to landfill. That was a significant achievement and one that has sent a message to the organisers of the ACT’s other major events.

It was the fourth year in a row that the National Folk Festival worked with the Department of Urban Services to reduce the amount of waste to landfill and better educate volunteers and participants about recycling. During the festival, there were bins in a number of locations throughout Exhibition Park clearly marked as being for compost or organic material for recycling, exactly the same as for ACT households, and other garbage. The printed festival program also prominently displayed information on how to use the recycling system and encouraged patrons to use it wisely.

The organisers of the National Folk Festival should be congratulated. It is great to see such a major event using innovative methods to promote recycling. The many thousands of people who attended the event also deserve recognition for so enthusiastically playing a role. The government intends to use the folk festival as a model for other major events in the ACT. A case study will be developed, along with a new policy on recycling at public events. Other major events could then follow the folk festival’s lead.

Mr Speaker, this is a classic and fine example of how the community, event organisers and the government can work together to achieve the no waste strategy, to change the throwaway culture and to get people to think about recycling and reuse. I am pleased to be able to report that the target of 75 per cent for waste recycling was well and truly exceeded. It is very heartening to see that, if we provide the facility for people to throw their unwanted organic material into a receptacle provided for the purpose, they will actually do so. We did also see a very large uptake in the number of people throwing things such as paper cups and plastics into bins for recycling. It seems to me to be a fantastic pointer to what can be done.

As I have said, it was the fourth year in a row that these people have been doing so, which is fantastic, but to date we have not had empirical data that we can point to in order to show the success of it and therefore adopt yet another plank in our no waste strategy. I am please to say that, if we could achieve a recycling rate of 75 per cent at major events such as Summernats, the National Multicultural Festival and the Canberra Festival, we would be well on the way. I would like to record my thanks and the Assembly’s congratulations to those people behind the system.

Disability services—insurance claims

MR STEFANIAK: My question is to the Minister for Disability, Housing and Community Services. Minister, you said yesterday that Disability ACT had not refused to provide adequate details about potential claims for compensation to the insurance

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