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Media Release

Senator the Hon Ian Macdonald
Parliamentary Secretary to the
Minister for the Environment

EFFLUENT REUSE SCHEME INSPECTED


25 June 1998

Senator Ian Macdonald, the Federal Parliamentary Secretary for the Environment has praised the Maryborough City Council's proposal for an Effluent Reuse Scheme during a visit to the project with the city's Mayor Cr Alan Brown today (Friday).

Senator Macdonald discussed the Council's recent application for Federal Government funding as part of the Coasts and Clean Seas Program with Council and Maryborough Sugar Factory representatives.

"The Coasts and Clean Seas Program will provide funds to local councils and community groups to undertake activities to repair, protect and enhance their local coastal environment.

"One of the aims of the Program is to reduce wastewater pollution of estuaries and costal waters by innovative approaches like this proposal to reduce the nutrient flow into the Mary River system," Senator Macdonald said.

The Coasts and Clean Seas Program is part of the Federal Government's $1.25 billion Natural Heritage Trust – Australia's largest ever environmental program.

Senator Macdonald said he was impressed with the proposed development as it would help the environment and also will create jobs in the local community through the projects development and from increased sugar production.

"The Maryborough area requires particular environmental considerations because of its close proximity to the Great Sandy Straits National Park and to Hervey Bay with its popular whale watching industry," Senator Macdonald said.

This project will allow 500 hectares of sugarcane to be irrigated earning over $1 million extra annually for the District.

"The application for funding will have to proceed through the normal assessment process but I was pleased to be able to use my visit today (Friday) to see at first hand what is proposed," Senator Macdonald said.

Senator Macdonald was in Maryborough as part of the Prime Minister's visit to the region.

ENDS
25 June 1998

For more information contact Philip Connole (02) 6277 3665 or 0417 063 605

Commonwealth of Australia