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Joint Media Release
Senator Warwick Parer, Minister for Resources and Energy
Senator Robert Hill, Minister for the Environment
Peter McGauran, MP, Minister for Science and Technology

Boost for Greenhouse Challenge

27 November 1996
(DPIE 96/96 PJ),

Efforts by Australia's mining industry to reduce emissions of greenhouse gasses were boosted today with the launch of a step- by- step guide on how to develop a Greenhouse Challenge cooperative agreement to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

The Greenhouse Challenge is a program of cooperative agreements between government and industry under which companies undertake to reduce or abate their greenhouse gas emissions.

Over ninety of Australia's leading companies and industry organisations have sent letters of intent advising of their commitment to develop a cooperative agreement with the Government. To date, the Government have signed cooperative agreements with seventeen companies and five industry associations.

The Greenhouse Challenge is an important plank in Australia's national response to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

The detailed Greenhouse Challenge Minerals Workbook was launched in Canberra by the Minister for Resources and Energy, Senator Warwick Parer, the Minister for the Environment, Senator Robert Hill and the Minister for Science and Technology, Peter McGauran.

Development of the workbook was funded jointly by the Greenhouse Challenge Office, the Australian Coal Association and the Minerals Council of Australia.

The workbook focuses on cost- effective actions that can be taken by minerals companies to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. It provides guidance on how to compile a greenhouse gas emissions inventory, develop cost-effective actions to reduce emissions, forecast emissions savings, develop performance indicators and how to monitor, review and report on progress in reducing emissions.

The Workbook includes a computer disc with spreadsheets to simplify the process for companies.

"The mining sector has made a good start with the Greenhouse Challenge. Several major coal and minerals companies have signed cooperative agreements and a number of companies are currently developing their agreements," said Senator Parer.

BHP, CRA and Shell have signed cooperative agreements with the Government. Another eight companies: ARCO Coal, Central Norseman Gold, North Limited, Pasminco, Peabody Resources, Powercoal, Western Mining and FAI Mining are currently developing their agreements.

"These companies have demonstrated that a win-win situation, a win for industry and a win for the environment, is feasible and achievable," Senator Hill said.

"Australia has significant strengths in minerals research and development and in applying new technologies relevant to the global environment challenge," said Mr McGauran.

As well as producing the workbook, the Greenhouse Challenge Office, the Australian Coal Association and the Minerals Council of Australia are also running workshops around Australia to complement the Workbook.

Workshops have already been held in Newcastle, Adelaide, Melbourne and Sydney. The next workshop is in Darwin tomorrow and others will be held in Queensland and Western Australia over the coming months.

The Ministers commended the Australian Coal Association and the Minerals Council of Australia for producing the Workbook and for their active efforts in encouraging the mining companies to join the Greenhouse Challenge.

Further information: Bob Baudino, Senator Parer's Office, 0419 438 818

Matt Brown, Senator Hill's Office, 0419 693 515

Carmel Christiansen, Mr McGauran's Office, 018 624 082

Louise Vickery, Greenhouse Challenge Office, 06 271 6633, 015 483 052

Commonwealth of Australia