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

10 May 2005

$100 million for environment research


Australia's position as world leader in environment research has been strengthened with Federal Budget funding of $100 million over five years to establish world class hubs of environmental research , the Minister for the Environment and Heritage, Senator Ian Campbell said today.

The funding will be provided under the Commonwealth Environment Research Facility ( CERF ), announced by the Prime Minister in September 2004.

Senator Campbell said CERF was aimed at creating national research hubs and building critical mass in areas of Australia's environmental research strengths and national research priorities. CERF specifically supports proposals that demonstrate strong public good outcomes.

"We need to ensure Australia's unique environment is properly understood and benefits from the development of high-quality environmental research addressing the environmental issues facing us," he said.

"CERF will create national research hubs of Australia's best environmental researchers to build on current strengths and address gaps in our current capacity and represents a further instalment to the national research effort by the Australian Government.

"Under the CERF programme, the Government will invest $40 million to support world-class research on the Great Barrier Reef and tropical rainforests.

"Funding of $3 million will initially be provided in 200506 to establish the Marine and Tropical Sciences Research Facility and to consolidate the work of the Cooperative Research Centre ( CRC ) for the Great Barrier Reef and the CRC for Tropical Rainforest Ecology and Management.

"The remaining amount of $60 million will be allocated through national funding rounds, the first of which will be conducted in 2005-06 with successful proposals receiving funding from 2006-07.

The research facilities will support environmental public policy objectives in a range of critical areas, drawing on multiple disciplines, professional partnerships and existing research efforts. The programme will operate from 2005-06 to 2009-10.

"The programme builds on Australia's capacity to understand and respond to environmental concerns-an outcome that benefits us all," Senator Campbell said.

For more information www.deh.gov.au/about/budget/2005

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

Commonwealth of Australia