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Media Release
Minister for the Environment and Heritage
Senator the Hon. Ian Campbell

10 May 2005

Waste and pollution targeted in 2005-06 Budget

The 2005-06 Federal Budget includes $10.4 million for initiatives to address waste and pollution issues, the Minister for Environment and Heritage, Senator Ian Campbell said today.

"The Australian Government is continuing its practical and focused approach to addressing environmental issues, both by working with industry and by making sure Australians are well-informed," Senator Campbell said.

"Minimising the impact of waste and pollution on the environment is an issue for all Australians and there are things we can all do as part of our daily lives.

"The Australian Government is investing $2 million over three years to work with industry to promote the use of new technologies to recycle used oil. Technologies such as hydrogenation mean used oil can be recycled again and again.

"Recycling in other forms is also a priority of this Budget. Australians have embraced waste recycling and, with $300,000 over three years for a National Recycling Hotline to be run by Planet Ark, the community will have greater access to information about what waste can be recycled in their local areas.

"The Australian Government will deliver on its election commitment to build on and strengthen its successful Green Stamp Programme with $900,000 over three years. This programme encourages the automotive industry to step up recycling, reducing its resource and energy use and the use of toxic materials. The programme will be managed through an extension of the Department of the Environment and Heritage's existing Eco-Efficiency Agreement with Motor Trade Associations."

Senator Campbell said the Budget also focused on air pollution, providing $1 million over three years to scope the use of hydrogen buses and the establishment of hydrogen fuel depots in Australian capital cities.

"We will look at the potential for hydrogen applications in urban bus fleets and the longer-term use of sustainably-produced hydrogen," he said.

"In line with delivering practical solutions at a community level, $1 million will be spent over the next three years to improve air quality in Launceston. Each winter, there are a number of days when air quality in Tasmania's Tamar Valley fails the national air quality standard for particles, and there is strong evidence that exposure to smoke particles has serious health effects, including increased mortality and respiratory illnesses.

"The National Pollutant Inventory (NPI) will also receive $1.3 million in 2005-06 with a total of $5.2 million over four years . This is an example of the Australian Government working with industry to give Australians access to information about pollutant emissions in their local area."

For more information

Media Contact:
Senator Campbell's office: Renae Stoikos (02) 6277 7640 or 0418 568 434

Commonwealth of Australia