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Media Release
Senator the Hon Robert Hill
Leader of the Government in the Senate
Minister for the Environment

Hill Launches World Leading Eco Design Products


2 October 2 1996
(124/96)

Federal Environment Minister Robert Hill has unveiled state-of-the-art household and office equipment that leads the world in environmental sustainability.

Beginning with a $760,000 Federal Government grant, the Centre for Design in Melbourne and six key companies used environmental protection as the focus for new designs of everyday products, such as dishwashers and office furniture.

"Industry followed the Government's lead and invested another $15 million in product development and production," Senator Hill said.

"Goods produced for the EcoReDesign project have significantly reduced environmental impacts.

"Less water, power and raw materials have been used during the manufacturing stage for some of these products, while others such as the dishwasher have been redesigned to reduce the raw materials used during operation.

"At the end of their useful life, products, such as the office furniture, can be disassembled, recycled, reconfigured and updated.

"The environmental and cost benefits of some products are outstanding," Senator Hill said.

"The estimated savings of the dishwasher in the emission of the greenhouse gas, carbon dioxide, would be more than 700 thousand tonnes if it replaced all dishwashers in Australia. The same dishwasher would save 10.6 billion litres of water, if used nationally.

"We have shown through the EcoReDesign program, that quality products can incorporate environmental features while maintaining market appeal.

"For business, this is the way of the future. Being on the leading edge of environmentally sustainable design will increase our national and international competitiveness while protecting the environment and saving valuable natural resources," Senator Hill said.

Media inquires: Matt Brown (06) 277 7640; 0419 693 515

Products being launched today:

EcoReDesign Companies:

Caroma -- to develop a water-saving device;

Email -- a whitegood designed for maximum performance and resource efficiency;

Blackmores -- environmentally preferred packaging;

Imaging Technologies -- an office vending machine for collecting and recycling toner cartridges from computer printers;

Southcorp Whitegoods -- Dishlex dishwasher designed for resource efficiency;

Schiavello Commercial Interiors -- modular office furniture, made from environmentally preferred materials, designed for long life and recycling.

Grants from the Australian Research Council and the Energy Research and Development Corporation to the EcoReDesign program enabled MEC-Kambrook to design a kettle and drinks-vending machine.

Commonwealth of Australia