Page 2425 - Week 08 - Thursday, 6 June 2013
Section 18 of the act provides for the Treasurer to authorise expenditure from the Treasurer’s advance. This package includes one such instrument signed under section 18. The instrument provides an increase of $433,000 in expenses on behalf of the territory (territorial) appropriation for the Office of the Legislative Assembly to reimburse employee termination and leave entitlement expenses incurred following the 2012 Assembly election.
Additional details regarding all instruments are provided in the statement of reasons accompanying each instrument I have tabled today. I commend these instruments to the Assembly.
Commissioner for Sustainability and the Environment report—government response
Paper and statement by minister
MR CORBELL (Molonglo—Attorney-General, Minister for Police and Emergency Services, Minister for Workplace Safety and Industrial Relations and Minister for the Environment and Sustainable Development): For the information of members, I present the following paper:
Commissioner for Sustainability and the Environment Act, pursuant to section 21(2)—Commissioner for Sustainability and the Environment—Report on the state of the watercourses and catchments for Lake Burley Griffin—Government response, dated June 2013.
I ask leave to make a statement in relation to the paper.
MR CORBELL: I am pleased to table the government’s response to this report from the Commissioner for Sustainability and the Environment. The government is committed to sound catchment and waterway management. The government referred the issue of the condition of the watercourses and catchments for Lake Burley Griffin to the Commissioner for Sustainability and the Environment following a resolution in this place.
The events that triggered this, of course, were increasing frequency and duration of algal bloom events in Lake Burley Griffin. These events significantly impact on recreational use of the lake and its amenity, as well as its national significance for our city.
The commissioner found that the key water quality issues for Lake Burley Griffin, in its assessment of conditions from 1978 to 2010, were: low dissolved oxygen levels caused by the release of the decomposition of organic matter in urban stormwater flowing into the lake; blue-green algal blooms caused by the release of phosphorous from sediments, when dissolved oxygen is low with a poor mixing of the water column, especially during dry periods; and the loss of submerged and fringing water plants caused by increasing levels of turbidity which contributes to low dissolved oxygen levels.