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

20 June 2003

Two Weeks Left To Apply For Environment Funding


Community groups and individuals have just two weeks left to apply for Australian Government Envirofund grants of up to $30,000 to carry out on-ground environmental work.

Federal Minister for the Environment and Heritage, Dr David Kemp, and Federal Minister for Fisheries, Forestry and Conservation, Senator Ian Macdonald, today reminded the public that applications for the first round of Envirofund funding for this year close on Friday, 4 July.

The popular Envirofund is the community component of the Howard Government's $2.7 billion Natural Heritage Trust which helps thousands of Australians carry out important on-ground works.

Applications for the first round of funding were invited in early May.

"Through the Envirofund, community groups or individuals can apply for grants of up to $30,000 to carry out on-ground environmental work be it tree planting, collecting seeds or weed control, or to improve their skills and knowledge to address local problems such as salinity, water quality, protection of native vegetation and coastal erosion," Dr Kemp said.

"This funding is in addition to the one-off $10 million Drought Recovery Round which is funding targeted works now underway across the country to protect land, water and vegetation from drought-induced damage and which is making a real difference."

Senator Macdonald said two rounds of funding are offered each year through the general Envirofund with the calling of the second round to occur later this year.

"Around $30 million has funded some 1869 environmental projects Australia-wide since the Envirofund was introduced in April last year," Senator Macdonald said.

"The success of the Envirofund hinges on the commitment of regional communities in identifying local environmental and natural resource management problems, developing local solutions and working cooperatively to implement them.

"And by funding small local projects, the Australian Government Envirofund helps all Australians to do their bit in protecting the environment and our natural resources. It is an excellent example of the Federal Government and local communities working in partnership to manage and protect our precious environment."

Envirofund projects currently underway around Australia include habitat protection for waterbirds, swans and platypus at Lake Inverell in NSW; removing weeds and rubbish, and tree planting on the Tiwi Islands north of Darwin; and growing and planting trees to link sections of native rainforest at Atherton in far north Queensland.

More information on the Australian Government Envirofund and application forms for funding is available by calling 1800 065 823 or visiting www.nht.gov.au. For a list of Envirofund projects underway, visit the Natural Heritage Trust web site www.nht.gov.au/projects.

Commonwealth of Australia