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Joint Media Release
Federal Minister for the Environment and Heritage
The Hon Dr David Kemp, MP
&
Federal Minister for Fisheries, Forestry and Conservation
Senator Ian Macdonald

7 May 2003

$19,728 for Northern Territory Drought Recovery Measures


Ecologically sensitive mulga woodlands and sand dune ecosystems under threat from feral camels and exacerbated by drought conditions will be the focus of a major project south west of Alice Springs, thanks to a $19,728 grant from the Howard Government's Australian Government Envirofund.

Federal Minister for the Environment and Heritage, Dr David Kemp, and Federal Minister for Fisheries Forestry and Conservation, Senator Ian Macdonald, today announced a further $6.7 million in funding nationally from a special drought recovery round of the Envirofund which includes $19,728 for a project in the Northern Territory. This is in addition to $3.3 million in priority drought recovery funding announced in March.

"This special round of funding involves grants of up to $30,000 for community groups to carry out on-ground environmental work in drought-affected areas, some of which is already underway as well as new projects that are about to start," Dr Kemp said.

"For example, the $19,728 grant will fund an important project aimed at reducing damage caused by feral camels in ecologically sensitive mulga woodlands, grasslands and sand dune ecosystems on property about 400 kilometres south west of Alice Springs. The project will involve mustering and removing feral camels by transporting them to more suitable environments."

The $10 million drought recovery round is part of the popular Australian Government Envirofund, which is the community component of the Howard Government's $2.7 billion Natural Heritage Trust. The drought recovery round is also an element of the $900 million package of measures introduced by the Government to help drought-affected Australian communities.

"It is only through community-driven projects that we can effectively manage the effect this drought is having on our environment. This is why funding is channelled directly to community groups, because they have the local knowledge, expertise and enthusiasm to deliver on-ground results," Dr Kemp said.

"Encouragingly, applications were received not only from groups seeking to maintain and build upon their existing on-ground work but from a large number of new community groups, working in partnership with the Natural Heritage Trust for the first time," Senator Macdonald added.

"Applications for grants under this round were very competitive and of a very high standard. The successful applicants are to be commended for their outstanding efforts and we look forward to seeing the results of their hard work."

Further funding is now available from the Envirofund with the next round closing 5pm, Friday 4 July 2003. Application forms are available by calling 1800 065 823 or visiting www.nht.gov.au.

For further information about projects funded in the Northern Territory, visit the Natural Heritage Trust web site at: www.nht.gov.au/projects

Media Contacts:
Catherine Job (Dr Kemp's office) 02 6277 7640 or 0408 648 400
Phil Connole (Senator Macdonald's office) 02 6277 7270 or 0417 063 605

Commonwealth of Australia