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The Hon Dr Sharman Stone
Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for the Environment and Heritage
Federal Member for Murray
5 December 2001
The latest 9 graduates from the Federal Government's $90m Green Corps program were acknowledged in a graduation ceremony today in Bendigo by Dr Sharman Stone, Parliamentary Secretary for the Environment and Heritage.
6 months hard work on a range of minor projects from Ballarat to Nhill, as well as the major task of restoring plains and grassy woodland vegetation communities around Bendigo will leave the graduates with great memories, as well as new skills and practical knowledge of the local environment and natural resources.
"We hope that the important work that this group of young people have been involved in will result in rare and threatened species like the Legless Lizard and Bush Curlew having a greater chance of survival", Sharman Stone said.
"By linking patches of native vegetation around Bendigo, the Green Corps participants have created new wildlife corridors for these rare and endangered species as well as reducing the effects of salinity and erosion".
The North Bendigo team were involved in a number of activities during their 6 months, including weed reduction at Sovereign Hill, planting of indigenous species at Conservation Volunteer Australia's new Bendigo office, work on the Hindmarsh Biolink at Nhill and the internationally recognised wetlands of the Barmah Forest.
Shaman Stone said that the environmental outcomes of the Bendigo Green Corps project were impressive.
"The team have planted over 42,000 plants, completed 13 kilometres of fencing and undertaken 500 square metres of weed control", Sharman Stone said.
"They also shared the knowledge they have learnt from their experiences, by participating in National Tree Day activities with the local Huntly Primary School".
Shaman Stone encouraged young people interested in finding out more about Green Corps to contact the National Green Corps Hotline number on 1800 633 844 or visit the Green Corps web site at: www.greencorps.org.au.
December 5th 2001
Simon Frost 0419 495 468