Page 2888 - Week 07 - Wednesday, 29 June 2011

Next page . . . . Previous page . . . . Speeches . . . . Contents . . . . Debates(HTML) . . . . PDF . . . . Video

The Greens believe this is a wasted opportunity, and I think it is a poor decision by the government, if I have read it correctly. They have taken the status quo approach rather than striving for something better. I would urge that that matter be given further consideration because I think there is great opportunity there.

I want to talk a little bit about parks reporting for Namadgi and budget indicators. As I have already said, while I acknowledge that staffing levels are absolutely not the only indicator of the state of natural areas, the truth is that we do not seem to have any other indicators. I am disappointed to see once again no funding for a state of the park report for Namadgi. Nor did the Namadgi management plan have ecological reporting requirements in it, and we are still relying on anthropocentric indicators for the budget process.

The indicators of land management in budget paper 4 are all about “customer satisfaction”. I believe we do need some measure of environmental performance. I have been told that state of the park reporting is resource intensive, but I am still at a loss to know how we are able to tell if we are tracking okay in terms of ecological or biodiversity outcomes in Namadgi and, for that matter, other nature reserves, with the current range of indicators we have.

I am sure that those implementing the pest and weeds management plan have some specific indicators as to the success, but I imagine that they are more focused on the presence or otherwise of these destructive species rather the actual health of the park. I would again urge the government to revisit this issue to give it consideration, and perhaps we will find more about this in the commissioner for the environment’s report on the state of the nature parks.

I would like to briefly talk about Mulligans Flat and Jerrabomberra. It has been welcome progress this year that the Mulligans Flat and Jerrabomberra boards have been set up, although I am surprised that the trust itself has not yet been established. I assume that we are to hear some news of progress on that front soon.

I think it is also good news regarding the allocation of $1 million over four years for woodlands restoration, which is to occur right across the landscape and be supported by work in the connectivity study coming from the planning and research team. This project will be a welcome opportunity to implement strategies to maximise the restoration of box gum woodland under-storeys, which we know are important habitats that include native grasses and orchids, and are home to species such as the small purple pea and the button wrinklewort.

Welcome also is the work on connectivity, although I do understand that some of this work has already been undertaken in years gone by, so I do hope that it gets put to good use this time and actually gets integrated into the planning instruments properly and does not just become another report left in the cupboard to gather dust.

Connectivity issues are clearly going to affect how and where we can continue urban infill. It was an issue of concern with the eastern broadacre study, for example, as connectivity from north to south could be quite significantly compromised should

Next page . . . . Previous page . . . . Speeches . . . . Contents . . . . Debates(HTML) . . . . PDF . . . . Video