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The Hon Dr Sharman Stone MP
Federal Member for Murray
Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister
for the Environment and Heritage

2 June 2000

Banskia Awards Bloom for World Environment Day

Innovative solutions and community involvement are two of the characteristics that make up this year's outstanding group of Banksia Environmental Award finalists, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for Environment and Heritage, Dr Sharman Stone MP, said today.

Dr Stone said the private sector's environmental achievements would be showcased as major corporations, small business and the community vied for the prestigious Banksia Foundation Environmental Awards in Sydney on Saturday night.

"The Banksia Environmental Awards recognise the leadership and contribution of the private sector, community and statutory authorities who have made an outstanding contribution to the environment over the past year," Sharman Stone said.

"The finalists are the unsung heroes of the environment, Australia's volunteer community groups and businesses who work tirelessly and often anonymously to help restore and protect our country's unique and fragile environment."

Among last year's winners were community groups honoured for their efforts to protect the rare Superb Parrot, Glossy Black Cockatoo and Peregrine Falcon, and a NSW schools education program called Hands on Learnscapes. Past winners include Ian Keirnan for his Clean Up Australia Campaign.

This year award categories include community, communications, flora and fauna conservation, waste minimisation, business practice, innovation and Local Agenda 21 among others.

"I'm delighted to see that once again this year finalists from the Goulburn Murray Region are strongly in contention for a number of awards," Sharman Stone said.

"Goulburn Murray Water and the Goulburn Valley Regional Water Authority have made an outstanding contribution to the environment in rural Victoria, particularly in the areas of salinity reduction, reducing and recycling effluent run-off, improving drainage and water quality in the Murray River's major tributaries."

Other finalists include Greening Australia Victoria, Hornsby Shire Council, Ford, The Olympic Coordination Authority, Healesville Sanctuary, and The Environmental Manager. Finalists from all states are represented.

Dr Stone said the Federal Government was proud to be a sponsor of the 2000 Banksia Environmental Awards. The Federal Government has contributed $60,000 in funding from the Natural Heritage Trust.

"It's our chance to say well done to those people and companies in our community who, through their creativity and commitment, are helping to make the Australian environment healthier and more sustainable," Sharman Stone said.

The Banksia Environmental Awards are held annually to coincide with World Environment Day on June 5.

Dr Stone said that recognising and celebrating the achievements of Australia's top environmental achievers helped to inspire others in the business and broader community.

Media Inquiries
Nicole Johnston, Assistant Adviser, 02 6277 2016 or 0419 219 415

2 June 2000

Commonwealth of Australia