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

28 January 2005

Alpine National Park heritage must be protected


The Victorian Government is on notice to ensure the heritage values of the Alpine National Park are protected, the Minister for Environment and Heritage, Senator Ian Campbell said today.

While the park would not be emergency listed on the National Heritage List at this stage, Senator Campbell said the Alpine National Park added outstanding heritage value to the nation.

He said his decision took into account evidence of the natural and cultural heritage of the park, including the history of alpine grazing.

"The Mountain Cattlemen's Association of Victoria has my support in their pursuit of a standard nomination on the National Heritage List," Senator Campbell said.

"The application for an emergency listing was unsuccessful because it did not meet the second requirement of emergency heritage listing — that one or more of the values is under immediate threat.

"However, if the Victorian Government does make a decision that threatens alpine grazing, I will reconsider the question of emergency listing.

"My decision not to emergency list the Alpine National Park does not affect the standard nomination for inclusion on the National Heritage List, or influence its outcome," he said.

The Mountain Cattlemen's Association of Victoria submitted an application to the Minister to emergency list the Alpine National Park in January this year.

It was submitted in response to the Victorian Government setting up a process to determine whether 63 alpine grazing licences should be renewed when they fall due in August this year.

The National Heritage List came into effect under new heritage legislation last year.

Places listed on the National Heritage List must be of exceptional value and importance to the nation as a whole.

The legislation establishes a process for the Australian Heritage Council to assess standard nominations for the National Heritage List over a period of 12 months and present a report to the Minister for the Environment and Heritage. In making their assessment, the Australian Heritage Council does not take threat into account. Emergency listing provides a process for the Minister to protect possible places of outstanding national significance that are under threat. Applications to emergency list places on the National Heritage List are made directly to the Minister to consider.

Further information about Australia's national heritage system can be found at www.deh.gov.au/heritage/national.

Media contact: Renae Stoikos on 02 6277 7640 or 0418 568 434

Commonwealth of Australia