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Joint Media Release
Mr Tony Abbott, MP
Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister for
Employment, Education, Training and Youth Affairs
Senator Ian Macdonald
Parliamentary Secretary to the
Minister for the Environment

SIX NEW GREEN CORPS TEAMS SET THEIR SITES ON RURAL AND URBAN VICTORIA


19 December 1997

Bush regeneration, land care, habitat protection and wildlife preservation will be among the new six Green Corps projects announced today for Victoria.

The Parliamentary Secretary for Employment, Education, Training and Youth Affairs, Tony Abbott MP, and the Parliamentary Secretary for the Environment, Senator Ian Macdonald, announced 33 new projects, to begin across Australia in April, which will provide places for 330 young Australians aged between 17 and 20 years.

Senator Macdonald said the projects complemented the Howard Government's environmental rescue plan, the $1.25 billion Natural Heritage Trust.

"The habitat protection, bush regeneration, land care and wildlife preservation projects are directly linked to Trust programs such as Bushcare and the Endangered Species Program.

"Five of the new Green Corps projects are based in rural Victoria at Benalla, Maryborough, Warrnambool, Bendigo and Ballarat.

"The urban-based project is at Lilydale, east of Melbourne, where a team will develop the Quinn Flora and Fauna Reserve through weed control, reforestation and the upgrading of existing trails.

"The Benalla project highlights the important role Green Corps teams play in restoring habitat and preserving wildlife.

"The main aim of the project is to protect, restore and enlarge one of the State's three Ironbark communities, which is a habitat for the nationally endangered Regent Honeyeater.

"Another example of wildlife preservation will occur at Warrnambool. The Green Corps team will capture 1000 koalas from Framlingham Forest where over-population has damaged their habitat.

"The koalas will be relocated to areas of similar habitat in south-western Victoria."

Mr Abbott said the program will do more than assist young people to join environmental projects. Green Corps helps young Australians to reach their potential by boosting their future employment and education prospects.

"Green Corps team members will receive accredited environmental training, providing nationally recognised skills transferable to other courses," Mr Abbott said.

The announcement of the fifth round of Green Corps projects marks the continued delivery of a key election commitment by the Howard Government and the commitment of $42 million to provide opportunities for 3500 young Australians over the next two years.

Media Contacts:
For Mr Abbott, Maxine Sells (06) 277 4337
For Senator Macdonald, Paula Randall 0419 238 756

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