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

23 December 1999


Tackling marine pollution and protection of whales, dolphins and giant kelp beds are among 11 new Natural Heritage Trust projects for Tasmania announced today by Federal Minister for the Environment and Heritage Robert Hill.

The projects have received a total of $860,932 from the Trust's Coasts and Clean Seas initiative.

According to Senator Hill, these new projects will address stormwater and waste water pollution, marine biodiversity, coastal and marine planning, and water quality issues throughout the State.

"Through Coasts and Clean Seas the Howard Government is supporting a range of projects that use innovative technology and promote the reuse and better treatment of waste water," Senator Hill said.

"For example, Huon Valley Council has received $196,190 funding to install a leading edge pre-treatment process in the front of an existing sewage treatment lagoon at Dover.

"With the assistance of $96,500 funding, Hobart City Council will undertake construction works to allow the reuse of treated sewage effluent from the Selfs Point Water Reclamation Plant to irrigate the grounds of the Royal Tasmanian Botanical Gardens.

"In order to reduce pollution entering Ralphs Bay, Clarence City Council will use its $155,080 funding to construct a wetland to reduce nutrient levels in stormwater before it is discharged into the Bay.

"The Tasmanian Aquaculture and Fisheries Institute has received $26,990 to survey and map seagrasses, macroalgae and wetlands within the Derwent Estuary and enhance existing information on beach, dune, intertidal flat and reef habitats in the area.

"With $94,894 funding the Department of Primary Industries, Water and Environment will attempt to conserve the critically threatened giant kelp beds along the State's east and south coast.

"The Department has received a further $74,800 to install whale rescue trailers and equipment on four Tasmanian beaches to allow for a quicker response by rescuers when whales and dolphins strand themselves on remote Tasmanian beaches.

"The end result of all these exciting projects will be cleaner beaches and lakes, improved water quality and a better understanding of the impact of human and natural activities on marine biodiversity."

The projects are funded under the Natural Heritage Trust's $141 million Coasts and Clean Seas initiative to support the conservation, repair and sustainable use of Australia's coastal and marine environment.

This latest round of Coasts and Cleans Seas funding brings to a total of $4,973,042 dedicated to clean seas, coastal monitoring and marine species protection projects in Tasmania.

In the cooperative spirit of the Trust, the Federal Government's 1999-2000 contribution will be boosted by $2.39 million funding from State and local governments and the community.

A list of funded projects is attached.

Media contacts:
Rod Bruem (Senator Hill's Office) 02 6277 7640 or 0419 258 364
Kristy Blackburn (Tasmanian Coasts and Clean Seas Coordinator) 03 6233 3742
Conall O'Connell (Environment Australia) 02 6274 1466

Commonwealth of Australia