Page 3841 - Week 10 - Thursday, 27 August 2009

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To facilitate the safe disposal of any consumer fireworks which members of the public may still have in their possession, the government is providing an opportunity for people to surrender their fireworks at the Callam offices car park in Phillip on the following three weekends, commencing this Saturday, 29 August, and ending on Sunday, 13 September this year, between the hours of 10 am and 3 pm without the threat of a criminal prosecution.

It is important to note that the direction will not protect members of the public from prosecution if they use or let off fireworks during this period. The direction will only protect members of the public who have fireworks in their possession from prosecution if the Director of Public Prosecutions reasonably believes that the person will surrender them or intends to do so within the hand-in period.

Planning and Environment—Standing Committee

Report 30—government response

MR CORBELL (Molonglo—Attorney-General, Minister for the Environment, Climate Change and Water, Minister for Energy and Minister for Police and Emergency Services) (3.05): For the information of members, I present the following paper:

Planning and Environment—Standing Committee (Sixth Assembly)—Report 30—The Proposed Nomination of the ACT as a UNESCO Biosphere Reserve—Government response.

I move:

That the Assembly takes note of the paper.

I am pleased to table in the Assembly today the ACT government’s response to the Sixth Assembly’s inquiry into the proposed nomination of the ACT as a United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation biosphere reserve. The Sixth Assembly’s Standing Committee on Planning and Environment undertook an inquiry into the feasibility of the ACT becoming a UNESCO-endorsed biosphere reserve.

The government has looked carefully at the feasibility and the merits of the ACT becoming a biosphere reserve. The standing committee’s report highlights the importance of community engagement in developing and managing a biosphere reserve, but then indicates that there is a lack of a broad community understanding about biosphere reserves and a lack of interest from some key stakeholders. The lack of engagement by Indigenous and youth sectors was noted as being of particular concern.

The report proposed a high level of government involvement to engender the required community support and engagement to proceed with a biosphere reserve in the ACT. The government recognises that biosphere reserves need to have strong community support if they are to be successful and has decided that it would not be appropriate at this time for the ACT government to lead or fund a biosphere reserve nomination.

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