Page 3685 - Week 10 - Wednesday, 26 August 2009
Greens in the ACT. I believe that is quite appropriate. I acknowledge and recognise the Greens’ rigid support for triple bottom-line decision making.
If there were any decision that demanded a rigorous application of triple bottom-line—in other words, environmental as well as economic and social considerations—it is one relating to issues around the operation of the Canberra airport and, most particularly, in relation to the imposition of a curfew. I believe that before we support a curfew at Canberra airport we must genuinely, objectively and rigorously attend to the environmental implications as well as the economic implications and the social implications of a curfew. Before we can make those decisions on a pure, proper, objective bottom-line basis we need the evidence. I believe that part of that evidence is a final, formal report from an independent noise assessor in relation to the level of existing noise and, through that, perhaps an extrapolation on other aspects of the noise implications of a 24-hour freight hub.
It would be different if we were talking about, other than a freight hub, a fully operational, 24-hour international airport. It might be then that some of the considerations we take into consideration might change. But the Canberra airport master plan and planning, as I understand it, is that there should be capacity for the airport to operate as a 24-hour freight hub. But, Ms Hunter, we do not have a final report. I must say, I have been led to believe that the final report would be available this month. I now understand that that will be another couple of weeks. It is not available. Always in relation to delays in the delivery of reports there is frustration. But I do not think it is reasonable for the government or, indeed, the Greens or this Assembly to rush to a position on a curfew for Canberra airport without having all of the evidence that we are actually deliberately gathering in relation to the issues that we need to take into account, most particularly noise.
Even when we take into account the issue of noise, we should not allow that to be the only consideration. We should be looking at those other aspects of the triple bottom-line decision making which you continually advocate—namely, a need to look at the economic implications of a curfew as well as the social implications of a curfew along of course, with the most reasonable assessment of the environmental implications, most particularly noise. That is the attitude we have adopted. It is the attitude we will maintain.
MR SPEAKER: Members, before we proceed with further questions, I would like to point out that we have a delegation from Kurdistan with us in the chamber this afternoon. They are visiting the Assembly to observe how we undertake our business. I welcome them to the ACT Legislative Assembly.
Members: Hear, hear!
Questions without notice
Gaming—sale of Labor clubs
MR SMYTH: My question is to the Chief Minister. Chief Minister, the Ministerial Code of Conduct states: