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Senator the Hon Robert Hill
Leader of the Government in the Senate
Minister for the Environment and Heritage
12 October 2001
The Australian Antarctic Division (AAD) has teamed with Vivendi Environnement, a leading international environmental services company, in a multi-year effort to fulfil a long-standing commitment by Australia to clean up and manage waste in Antarctica.
Federal Minister for the Environment Robert Hill today welcomed the initiative between the AAD and Collex/Onyx Australia, a subsidiary of French-based Vivendi Environnement.
"This is a significant commitment from a major international company towards protecting one of the world's most precious environments," Senator Hill said.
"Australia is committed to protecting the Antarctic environment. Collex/Onyx brings to this work a wealth of experience in waste management which will be very welcome in this long and important task," he said.
"This cooperative endeavour between the Australian Antarctic Division and the French company Vivendi continues a record of cooperation between Australia and France in protecting the Antarctic environment, dating back to their joint instigation of the historic 1991 Protocol on Environmental Protection to the Antarctic Treaty.
"I look forward to the expertise and equipment being utilised for this joint government-private sector initiative being made available to other Antarctic nations to ensure this vital process is continued well into the future," Senator Hill said.
Senator Hill said the initiative provides a boost to Australia's work under the Antarctic Treaty to remediate waste in Antarctica.
Vivendi will provide 240 purpose-built containers to transport waste collected from Antarctic sites, as well as donating environmental management expertise.
After their initial use at Australia's Casey station from next December, the containers will be made available for future work by Australia and other Antarctic nations over the next ten years.
12 October 2001
Belinda Huppatz (Senator Hill's Office) 0419 258 364