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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 2008 Week 10 Hansard (Wednesday, 27 August 2008) . . Page.. 3790 ..

the next challenge as we work towards the overall policy of carbon neutrality. These programs and outcomes are a demonstration of the government’s commitment to reducing energy use and thus the territory’s greenhouse gas emissions.

A sustainable environment depends on the availability of water. The sustainable management and use of water is a core component of sustainability policy and implementation for the ACT. Future water security and sustainability for the ACT and the region has been one of the most critical challenges facing the government and indeed the ACT. The ACT has a plan to manage and use its water resources sustainably. This is reflected in the development of the water strategy “Think water, act water”.

The government has been implementing a comprehensive and integrated approach to supply and demand components of water sustainability and “Think water, act water” sets significant objectives and targets which are being met. Canberrans, it has to be said, have done extraordinarily well in conserving this precious resource and have reduced water use by 13 per cent. We have developed and implemented catchment management plans for Namadgi and the lower Cotter catchment.

These are just some of the successes of this government in relation to its absolute commitment to pursuing a sustainable future for Canberra now and into the future.

MR PRATT (Brindabella) (4.25): I welcome the MPI as an opportunity to shoot down the government’s claims that they are effectively maintaining a sustainable environment. In fact, with all the claims made by Mr Gentleman, I would love to see him go through that list and prove these claims.

Let us go through a number of issues. With waste management, for example, the no waste by 2010 strategy has been allowed to languish. The government have even stopped talking about it, but then they probably have to because they have committed $850,000 in the 2008 budget to identify a new site for yet another landfill. They keep digging up the territory. There is no other commitment in that budget of any substance for any other broad-ranging initiative that might substantially diminish the landfill requirement. This should be seen by all in the ACT as a clear departure by this government from the ACT no waste by 2010 strategy.

This government has lost any credibility on waste issues and lacks the vision needed to take us beyond unsustainable fixes and into the future. Where is the consideration of expanded options for recycling and other sustainable treatments for waste? The option of green waste collection from households as well as commercial operations should have been investigated and costed well before now. Why has no active consideration been given to biomass recycling of putrescible waste?

Minister Hargreaves confessed on radio last week that he had not even bothered to travel the short distance to the ANU to look at their HotRot system. I suppose if he is unable to understand that his department’s assessment of 29,700 cars in 2006 probably means that a minimum of 29,000 cars can be anticipated to be on the GDE in 2008, which he grossly underestimated, he is to be forgiven for not walking one kilometre to view one of the few biomass recycling plants in Australia. There were no travel allowances available, I suppose.

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